So you’ve decided to fly to the gorgeous island of Kauai for your adventurous elopement but you’ve probably read horror stories about how strict the island is with combatting the COVID-19 pandemic. Fear not! I have just returned from a nine day trip to the beautiful island and I have all the information you could need or want to elope in Kauai.
The very first thing you need to do to elope in Kauai: choose your dates and book your flights! I got a killer deal from Hawaiian Airlines for only $300 round trip. Don’t get too excited, this price is pretty rare. I suggest using an app like Hopper to watch and wait for the best deals. Once you’ve got your flights booked, it’s time to dig into the requirements for entering the island. Hawaii, in general, is pretty strict but Kauai is even tighter on the restrictions, that’s probably why they have so few cases, huh? The island recently rejoined the Hawaii Safe Travels Program. This means you’re able to enjoy the island without having to quarantine if you follow the proper protocols laid out for you.
Step One: Create a Safe Travels Account. You can find the link here.
Step Two: Add your trip. You need to add every single leg of your flight within Hawaii. For example I flew into Honolulu and then from there I went to Lihue. I had to enter two separate trips in the Safe Travels account. DO NOT MISS THIS STEP. If you do, you risk having to quarantine for the length of your trip.
Step Three: Take a pre-travel COVID-19 test with one of Hawaii’s Trusted Partners within 72 hours of departure of the final leg of your trip to Hawaii (this means your departure flight into Hawaii, not a random layover in the main-land!) Do not go to the random clinic down the street, your test will not be valid and you will have to quarantine. I used the Worksite Labs that partners with Hawaiian Airlines at PDX. It costed $90 but I was guaranteed to have my results within 36 hours. Worth the money if you don’t want to risk not receiving your results in time. Upload your results to your Safe Travels account, (we also printed a copy of ours just to be safe but it seemed as though they preferred the digital copy)
Step Four: Fill out the mandatory Safe Travels Health Form. It’s a pretty straightforward form asking if you have symptoms or have been exposed to someone with COVID-19. You can fill out this form within 24 hours of your departure flight. Again, you need to do this for each leg of your trip. You will receive QR codes to your registered email. Keep these handy, you need them to enter the islands.
Step Five: Wear your mask, wash your hands, and enjoy the beauty that Kauai has to offer!
That’s it! It seems daunting but if you take your time and follow the protocols, it’s quite easy. Both Honolulu and Lihue had everything extremely organized and quick. Be sure you don’t skip a step or it’s a real hassle to fix.
Now to the legalities of eloping on Kauai.
Marriage License: It costs $60 and is valid for 30 days. No blood tests are required but both the bride and groom need to provide proof of age. It is valid on any island in Hawaii.
Permits: If you plan to elope in a state or national park make sure you have proper permits! Each location is different so check with your planner once you choose location.
Officiant: Ensure your officiant is properly registered with the State of Hawaii. You can find that information here. (Choose “performers”).
No witnesses necessary! This makes eloping even easier.
It literally doesn’t matter where on Kauai you decide to elope, because it’s all breathtaking. Each side of the island is unique in it’s own way and it’s up to you to decide priority in deciding your ceremony location. Talk to your photographer to get suggestions based on your dream elopement.
To see more kauai elopement images, scroll down!