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Does CDC have jurisdiction over NCL's Pride of America in Hawaii?


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As I understand it, CDC's jurisdiction is at the US border or between US states.  NCL's Pride of America (PoA) sails wholly inside Hawaiian waters - that is, inside the state.  If Hawaii allows PoA to sail, can CDC force a stoppage?

 

I haven't sailed PoA yet. Do you go through any border controls or customs on this itinerary?

 

Of course, NCL might not want to run afoul of the agency, but FDR (the CEO) is also getting a little impatient...

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15 hours ago, intr3pid said:

If Hawaii allows PoA to sail, can CDC force a stoppage?

First off, as a US state Hawaii is 100% within the jurisdiction of the CDC's no sail order. Even if there was some sort of weird loophole (which there is not), its not like Hawaii has been on the forefront of allowing travel and open to visitors. There was a long time you couldn't even travel inter-island. Only in the next 15 days do they think they will allow visitors without the 14 day quarantine (and thats been extended last minute several times so far).

 

15 hours ago, intr3pid said:

I haven't sailed PoA yet. Do you go through any border controls or customs on this itinerary?

Again, Hawaii is a US state. If you are traveling from the continental US, or inter island, you wouldn't go through any border controls because you haven't crossed any international borders. Hawaii does have an agriculture check which looks like an additional airport screening when departing the islands. 

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1 minute ago, princeton123211 said:

First off, as a US state Hawaii is 100% within the jurisdiction of the CDC's no sail order. Even if there was some sort of weird loophole (which there is not), its not like Hawaii has been on the forefront of allowing travel and open to visitors. There was a long time you couldn't even travel inter-island. Only in the next 15 days do they think they will allow visitors without the 14 day quarantine (and thats been extended last minute several times so far).

 

Again, Hawaii is a US state. If you are traveling from the continental US, or inter island, you wouldn't go through any border controls because you haven't crossed any international borders. Hawaii does have an agriculture check which looks like an additional airport screening when departing the islands. 

To complicate things just  a bit the CDC does not normally have authority over the POA with regard to it its vessel sanitation program, which is in place to specifically for the prevention of the introduction of disease into the US from a foreign country. As POA does not sail in foreign waters or visit foreign ports it is not regulated by the CDC in this regard. Nor does POA travel from state to state, which would also permit the CDC to impose quarantine restrictions on her. POA never leaves Hawaii so is subject state regulation.

 

The process of allowing a ship to enter a port when certified to be free of disease is called a granting of free pratique. The CDC No Sail Order specifically references what cruise ships must do to in order to be given free pratique , so it may very well be that POA is not subject to the No Sail Order. But, I could also argue that the public health emergency declared that permitted the CDC to impose the No Sail Order, if liberally interpreted, allows the CDC to regulate POA when it normally does not. 

 

About the only way we'll get a definitive answer is if Hawaii OKs the POA to resume sailing, but the CDC says "no dice" and the issue is resolved by the courts.

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1 hour ago, njhorseman said:

To complicate things just  a bit the CDC does not normally have authority over the POA with regard to it its vessel sanitation program, which is in place to specifically for the prevention of the introduction of disease into the US from a foreign country. As POA does not sail in foreign waters or visit foreign ports it is not regulated by the CDC in this regard. Nor does POA travel from state to state, which would also permit the CDC to impose quarantine restrictions on her. POA never leaves Hawaii so is subject state regulation.

 

The process of allowing a ship to enter a port when certified to be free of disease is called a granting of free pratique. The CDC No Sail Order specifically references what cruise ships must do to in order to be given free pratique , so it may very well be that POA is not subject to the No Sail Order. But, I could also argue that the public health emergency declared that permitted the CDC to impose the No Sail Order, if liberally interpreted, allows the CDC to regulate POA when it normally does not. 

 

About the only way we'll get a definitive answer is if Hawaii OKs the POA to resume sailing, but the CDC says "no dice" and the issue is resolved by the courts.

We have seen the governors take issue with the administration's potential meddling in the state lockdown matters.  I say potential because a confrontation never came to pass, and I sense the administration realized they didn't have a case - despite a national emergency.

 

Florida senators have pushed for a new cruising restart bill this week, so it looks states are willing to work with the cruise lines.  Florida obviously has much more at stake than Hawaii.  Hawaii has been more conservative all around but is also hemorrhaging more jobs.

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On 9/18/2020 at 7:11 PM, princeton123211 said:

I would say it looks like cruise lines have really good lobbyists more than states have eager Senators...

If they had really brought their A-game to lobbying, we wouldn't have been in this predicament with the CDC in the first place.

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14 hours ago, intr3pid said:

If they had really brought their A-game to lobbying, we wouldn't have been in this predicament with the CDC in the first place.

Thats an absolutely ridiculous thing to say-- you contend that cruising during the pandemic was safe the whole time and the CDC just arbitrarily decided to curtail it with their no sail order?

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55 minutes ago, princeton123211 said:

Thats an absolutely ridiculous thing to say-- you contend that cruising during the pandemic was safe the whole time and the CDC just arbitrarily decided to curtail it with their no sail order?

Your post here is just as misinformed as the one above (#3).  #3 above shows you have no understanding of how CDC's authority is defined - or what it can or cannot do inside a state. 

 

And, now, in this post, you are jumping to conclusions that seem to exist only in your own mind.

 

I would recommend doing your research first.  Read CDC's detailed account of the cruise ship response back from July.  Pages 7 onwards of:

https://www.cdc.gov/quarantine/pdf/No-Sail-Order-Cruise-Ships-Second-Extension_07_16_2020-p.pdf

 

It is clear that the ships took CDC's early guidance and concerns without much seriousness leading to the NSO being extended in July.  They had used the Washington lobbying firms (Brownstein, Crestview) with little success.   Only with the new NSO extension did the operators start to understand the gravity of the situation - being that they would really have to go through the CDC.  They started putting together these healthy sail panels and recruiting all sorts of healthcare executives. 

 

Fast forward to September, and the cruise lines may have found a way to start some cruising safely.  (Well, they have already started in Europe.)  BUT - absolutely no relationship or communication with the CDC.  The CDC doesn't owe them anything.  The cruise lines have to melt the ice.

 

So, it's only in the last month or so that they have recruited government relations executives.  CDC isn't budging anyways until after the elections - no need to open a new can of worms at this juncture - but the cruise lines still need to lay the groundwork today.

 

Not much above is relevant to this thread - the least of which being whether it's safe to cruise or not - but if you are somehow crediting the new bill with cruise ship lobbying, you have very little understanding of how abysmal that effort has been in the past.

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19 hours ago, intr3pid said:

Your post here is just as misinformed as the one above (#3).  #3 above shows you have no understanding of how CDC's authority is defined - or what it can or cannot do inside a state. 

 

And, now, in this post, you are jumping to conclusions that seem to exist only in your own mind.

You are making some very broad conclusions about me based on very little information. I'm actually in the aviation space and we have been navigating our way through this just like everyone else both at the government level as well as how we deal with the traveling public. I actually have quite a bit of experience on it helping to stand back up a business that took a significant hit in the beginning of the pandemic. 

 

The argument you are making is very academic: "is it lawful?" and "is this under the CDC's purview?". I would argue that it doesn't matter-- the CDC guidance is correct in that it is most likely not safe to travel in the close quarters of cruise ships right now. Cruise ships are petri dishes in good times (norovirus anyone?) and we do not have nearly the understanding we need to create a clean, safe environment aboard these vessels at the moment.

 

On top of all that-- cruising is not necessary. It's a pleasure holiday. We were forced to quickly create protocols in the aviation industry because it is necessary-- you cant apply the same test to a cruise ship. It doesn't serve the same purpose. No one needs to cruise. 

 

You also have to consider the long term effects of being the first one back-- what happens if there is a major breakout onboard one of your ships? What long term damage have you done to your brand? Disney waited a whole month after Universal reopened in Florida-- a lot of the reason being to let them be the guinea pig in case it went south. The NCL CEO can be as hot to trot as he wants-- but does he really want to be the one with his face plastered all over the news cycle as the one who got everyone sick?

 

Going back to your original post about border controls around the US State of Hawaii, NCL and Pride of America face incredible hurdles to return to cruising that even other ships in other places don't-- you cant even travel to Hawaii until Oct 15th without 2 weeks of enforced quarantine and who knows if that will be extended like it has been by the Governor. Even when thats over, people still have to fly at least 6 hours from the mainland to join the ship-- something that there won't be a ton of appetite for right away. 

 

You're sooner going to be cruising out of Florida than out of Hawaii and I don't think either will be back soon. 

 

 

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2 hours ago, princeton123211 said:

You are making some very broad conclusions about me based on very little information. I'm actually in the aviation space and we have been navigating our way through this just like everyone else both at the government level as well as how we deal with the traveling public. I actually have quite a bit of experience on it helping to stand back up a business that took a significant hit in the beginning of the pandemic. 

 

The argument you are making is very academic: "is it lawful?" and "is this under the CDC's purview?". I would argue that it doesn't matter-- the CDC guidance is correct in that it is most likely not safe to travel in the close quarters of cruise ships right now. Cruise ships are petri dishes in good times (norovirus anyone?) and we do not have nearly the understanding we need to create a clean, safe environment aboard these vessels at the moment.

 

On top of all that-- cruising is not necessary. It's a pleasure holiday. We were forced to quickly create protocols in the aviation industry because it is necessary-- you cant apply the same test to a cruise ship. It doesn't serve the same purpose. No one needs to cruise. 

 

You also have to consider the long term effects of being the first one back-- what happens if there is a major breakout onboard one of your ships? What long term damage have you done to your brand? Disney waited a whole month after Universal reopened in Florida-- a lot of the reason being to let them be the guinea pig in case it went south. The NCL CEO can be as hot to trot as he wants-- but does he really want to be the one with his face plastered all over the news cycle as the one who got everyone sick?

 

Going back to your original post about border controls around the US State of Hawaii, NCL and Pride of America face incredible hurdles to return to cruising that even other ships in other places don't-- you cant even travel to Hawaii until Oct 15th without 2 weeks of enforced quarantine and who knows if that will be extended like it has been by the Governor. Even when thats over, people still have to fly at least 6 hours from the mainland to join the ship-- something that there won't be a ton of appetite for right away. 

 

You're sooner going to be cruising out of Florida than out of Hawaii and I don't think either will be back soon. 

 

 

 

We are all experts about something in our own minds.  With all due respect, your CV doesn't impress me much - your posts reveal much more. 

 

95% of your last past doesn't contribute much to the topic of this thread.  "Is cruising necessary?"  "What are the long-term effects of being the first one to return?"  "Do people want to fly for 6 hours?"  There are dozens of other threads in which you can discuss these issues.

 

Now, do you understand why CDC cannot do anything about the opening of Disney World or Universal in Florida?  Do you understand why CDC cannot stop a university from holding in-person classes?  Do you understand why CDC can't enforce social distancing, say, in the bars in Texas?  And, then, do you understand why CDC is still able to control how cruise ships operate?  Unless you can show you can grasp these concepts, there isn't much for us to discuss here. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Not going to get into the politics being bandied around here, just going to point out some obviously misunderstood "facts" presented here.

 

As noted, the POA does not fall under the CDC for the vessel sanitation program, since it is strictly domestic, the FDA does the sanitation program.

 

The CDC not only has jurisdiction over introduction of infectious disease into the US, at international borders, but also between states, as interstate commerce is the jurisdiction of the federal government.  This is what has led the US flag cruises like American Cruise Line, which only do domestic cruises, to be shut down by the CDC no sail order as well as the foreign flag cruise ships.

 

Now, to the POA.  While the POA does cruise only within the state of Hawaii, it does go beyond state waters, 3 nautical miles, into federal waters, out to 12 nautical miles, and sometimes into international waters.  But, that is somewhat besides the point.  Even completely domestic voyages, by US flag ships, must obtain clearance from the USCG every time they want to enter a US port, because the navigable waters of the US are federal jurisdiction.  So, this means, in practice, that the water next to Pier 11 in Honolulu are federal jurisdiction, while the pier itself is state jurisdiction.  Now we come to the important part.  One aspect of obtaining clearance to enter a US port is to have a "clean bill of health" or "free pratique" as mentioned above.  This "pratique" comes from, wait for it, the CDC.  So, even though the ship does not visit any other state than Hawaii, it still falls under the CDC's no sail order.

 

So, regardless of what a governor wants, or a port city council or port authority wants, the USCG is the enforcing agency that allows ships to enter US ports, working with other federal agencies like CDC, CBP, ICE, etc.

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3 hours ago, chengkp75 said:

Now we come to the important part.  One aspect of obtaining clearance to enter a US port is to have a "clean bill of health" or "free pratique" as mentioned above.  This "pratique" comes from, wait for it, the CDC

Alright, so which law would this fall under?  Can you point to the specifics?  It would be very interesting to explore the details.

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1 hour ago, intr3pid said:

Alright, so which law would this fall under?  Can you point to the specifics?  It would be very interesting to explore the details.

42CFR71.21 requires the Master of any vessel wishing to enter a US port, to report the death or illness of any passenger or crew, to the closest quarantine station to the port wishing to be entered.  The 20 US quarantine stations are set up under the CDC, and then notify the USCG whether pratique has been issued for the vessel, before the USCG issues the clearance to enter port. 

 

The ship I am currently sitting on does exclusively coastwise US trade, and we have to send in a report of health every port, to get a USCG clearance, even if it is from one port in one state to another port in the same state.  We do this every week.

Edited by chengkp75
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6 hours ago, chengkp75 said:

So, even though the ship does not visit any other state than Hawaii, it still falls under the CDC's no sail order.

Chief, we had a discussion about this months ago shortly after the No Sail Order was promulgated. I'm not going to attempt to dig up the old posts, but my recollection is that I argued the No Sail Order applied to POA...admittedly for different reasons than than you're giving now, and you argued the order did not apply to POA. If I recall my argument was along the lines of the declaration of a public health emergency gave the CDC broader jurisdiction over cruise ships than it normally had...but your current argument is really much better than my earlier one.

 

It almost sounds as if you remembered something that you had forgotten during the discussion months ago...that "you have to send in a report of health  every port to get USCG clearance, even if it is from one port in one state to another port in the same state".

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12 minutes ago, njhorseman said:

Chief, we had a discussion about this months ago shortly after the No Sail Order was promulgated. I'm not going to attempt to dig up the old posts, but my recollection is that I argued the No Sail Order applied to POA...admittedly for different reasons than than you're giving now, and you argued the order did not apply to POA. If I recall my argument was along the lines of the declaration of a public health emergency gave the CDC broader jurisdiction over cruise ships than it normally had...but your current argument is really much better than my earlier one.

 

It almost sounds as if you remembered something that you had forgotten during the discussion months ago...that "you have to send in a report of health  every port to get USCG clearance, even if it is from one port in one state to another port in the same state".

Yeah, I don't do the Captain's paperwork, so I totally forgot about pratique being a requirement for submitting the ENOAD (electronic notice of arrival/departure) that the USCG requires for entry/departure from a US port.  Because we almost never have any illness onboard, it is sort of a footnote.

 

ENOAD's are supposed to be submitted 72/48/and 24 hours prior to arrival, but we get a "dispensation" if we are only going from Corpus Christi to Houston (16 hours).

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10 hours ago, chengkp75 said:

42CFR71.21 requires the Master of any vessel wishing to enter a US port, to report the death or illness of any passenger or crew, to the closest quarantine station to the port wishing to be entered.  The 20 US quarantine stations are set up under the CDC, and then notify the USCG whether pratique has been issued for the vessel, before the USCG issues the clearance to enter port. 

 

The ship I am currently sitting on does exclusively coastwise US trade, and we have to send in a report of health every port, to get a USCG clearance, even if it is from one port in one state to another port in the same state.  We do this every week.

No, this isn't applicable.

 

"The provisions of this part contain the regulations to prevent the introduction, transmission, and spread of communicable disease from foreign countries into the States or territories (also known as possessions) of the United States. Regulations pertaining to preventing the interstate spread of communicable diseases are contained in 21 CFR parts 1240 and 1250 and 42 CFR part 70."

 

https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/CFR-2013-title42-vol1/xml/CFR-2013-title42-vol1-part71.xml

 

Is there something else?  You aren't suggesting that the Staten Island Ferry has to submit a pratique to CDC on every crossing?

 

BTW, the ship you are on is flagged where?

Edited by intr3pid
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22 minutes ago, intr3pid said:

No, this isn't applicable.

 

"The provisions of this part contain the regulations to prevent the introduction, transmission, and spread of communicable disease from foreign countries into the States or territories (also known as possessions) of the United States. Regulations pertaining to preventing the interstate spread of communicable diseases are contained in 21 CFR parts 1240 and 1250 and 42 CFR part 70."

 

https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/CFR-2013-title42-vol1/xml/CFR-2013-title42-vol1-part71.xml

 

Is there something else?  You aren't suggesting that the Staten Island Ferry has to submit a pratique to CDC on every crossing?

 

BTW, the ship you are on is flagged where?

Gee, guess we've been doing this wrong for years.  Since we do strictly domestic trade, we are US flag.  And, as I've said before, even the POA "leaves" the state of Hawaii when it goes outside of 3 nautical miles offshore, and then returns when entering back within 3 miles.  When I worked on the Pride of Aloha, the bridge would notify the Purser's office whenever the ship left the 3 mile limit so that the point of sale registers onboard would be reprogrammed to stop charging the Hawaiian state GET tax.

 

The Staten Island ferry does not leave the jurisdiction of any state, and anyway, I believe that ferries are exempt from these requirements specifically in the definitions.

 

And, while the FDA, not the CDC does the sanitation program for US flag cruise vessels that do not go foreign, the required GI illness report, each voyage still goes to the CDC for recording and dealing with outbreaks like noro or e coli.

 

But, hey, if you think otherwise, feel free to let Mr. Del Rio know that he's missing out on something if he doesn't lobby Hawaii to get the POA moving.

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1 hour ago, chengkp75 said:

Gee, guess we've been doing this wrong for years.  Since we do strictly domestic trade, we are US flag.  And, as I've said before, even the POA "leaves" the state of Hawaii when it goes outside of 3 nautical miles offshore, and then returns when entering back within 3 miles.  When I worked on the Pride of Aloha, the bridge would notify the Purser's office whenever the ship left the 3 mile limit so that the point of sale registers onboard would be reprogrammed to stop charging the Hawaiian state GET tax.

 

The Staten Island ferry does not leave the jurisdiction of any state, and anyway, I believe that ferries are exempt from these requirements specifically in the definitions.

 

And, while the FDA, not the CDC does the sanitation program for US flag cruise vessels that do not go foreign, the required GI illness report, each voyage still goes to the CDC for recording and dealing with outbreaks like noro or e coli.

 

But, hey, if you think otherwise, feel free to let Mr. Del Rio know that he's missing out on something if he doesn't lobby Hawaii to get the POA moving.

Well, this one should be easy to resolve then.  When you worked on the Pride of Aloha, did your ship submit a pratique to the CDC every time it rolled into a new Hawaiian port?

 

The only substantive part of your argument is the PoA's passage through the federal waters between Kaua'i and Oahu. And even that can be argued - that is, CDC's stated authority is around transport (1) from foreign countries into the US and (2) between the US states - neither of which is seemingly evident when go Hawaii - federal waters - Hawaii.

 

As for FDR, I somehow doubt he needs my nudge to empty his rage on the CDC.

Edited by intr3pid
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7 hours ago, intr3pid said:

Well, this one should be easy to resolve then.  When you worked on the Pride of Aloha, did your ship submit a pratique to the CDC every time it rolled into a new Hawaiian port?

 

The only substantive part of your argument is the PoA's passage through the federal waters between Kaua'i and Oahu. And even that can be argued - that is, CDC's stated authority is around transport (1) from foreign countries into the US and (2) between the US states - neither of which is seemingly evident when go Hawaii - federal waters - Hawaii.

 

As for FDR, I somehow doubt he needs my nudge to empty his rage on the CDC.

Oh, so the ship only goes outside of 3 miles offshore when going between Kauai and Oahu?  Well, the closest land points on Kauai and Oahu are over 70 miles distant, so not only do you exit state waters there, you exit US territorial waters, and the US contiguous zone, and are in international waters.  The same applied when traveling between Kauai or Oahu and the Big Island. 

 

Yes, we had to submit the report of illness for each port, and then get USCG clearance having obtained pratique. 

 

But, since you apparently know the answer to the question you posed in the title of the thread, why did you ask it in the first place?  Done here.

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13 hours ago, chengkp75 said:

Oh, so the ship only goes outside of 3 miles offshore when going between Kauai and Oahu?  Well, the closest land points on Kauai and Oahu are over 70 miles distant, so not only do you exit state waters there, you exit US territorial waters, and the US contiguous zone, and are in international waters.  The same applied when traveling between Kauai or Oahu and the Big Island. 

 

Yes, we had to submit the report of illness for each port, and then get USCG clearance having obtained pratique. 

 

But, since you apparently know the answer to the question you posed in the title of the thread, why did you ask it in the first place?  Done here.

The waters beyond 3nm are a part of US federal EEZ all the way up to 200nm.  And the passage between Kaua'i and Oahu is the only questionable part of the voyage.  The US territorial/contiguous waters extend up to 12-24nm, and it is very easy for the PoA to stay within these - if needed - along the other three islands.

 

Here is how an international voyage is defined in the CFR that you quoted:

 

"International voyage means: (1) In the case of a carrier, a voyage between ports or airports of more than one country, or a voyage between ports or airports of the same country if the ship or aircraft stopped in any other country on its voyage; or (2) in the case of a person, a voyage involving entry into a country other than the country in which that person begins his/her voyage."

 

https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/CFR-2013-title42-vol1/xml/CFR-2013-title42-vol1-part71.xml

 

The passage between Kaua'i and Oahu doesn't fall into any of the above.

 

As for the question in this thread, the purpose is to have a mature discussion on the topic - not to have to respond to tantrums.

Edited by intr3pid
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  • 2 months later...

I was a Senior Officer on Pride of Aloha. 7-day domestic cruises around Hawaii.

We were required to file illness reports to CDC and Coast Guard between every Hawaiian Port on our itinerary. No exceptions were made for long or short distances between those ports, nor the distance from land where we sailed.

Prior to that, I served on NCL’s Norwegian Star, doing 7-day cruises around Hawaii, with a foreign stop at Fanning Island.

We were required to submit illness reports every day between all ports, domestic and international.

Were all these reports legally required?

Both the CDC and Coast Guard told us that they were.

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  • 1 month later...

I would like to see only US citizens to sail on POA to start out with. Mandatory vaccine required to fly to Hawaii and for the cruise. I feel because Hawaii is America they would be more likely to have vaccine available to all Residents. I would not want to sail to a foreign country for a long time into the future, due to poor countries not have a vaccine available. It would be a start, currently with rules up in the air, i dont see POA able to sail.

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On 1/30/2021 at 4:03 PM, sugcarol said:

I feel because Hawaii is America they would be more likely to have vaccine available to all Residents. I would not want to sail to a foreign country for a long time into the future, due to poor countries not have a vaccine available. 

 

Hawaii isn't as up-to-date as you may think.  We are just starting with phase 1B vaccine distribution, and that is only as supplies permit.

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On 1/30/2021 at 9:03 PM, sugcarol said:

I feel because Hawaii is America they would be more likely to have vaccine available to all Residents.

As Silver Sweethearts mentioned- even with a relatively smaller population to most states Hawaii didn't get ahead out of the gate with vaccines. 

 

Even not during a pandemic, the other thing to keep in mind about Hawaii, that while American soil, it is most likely the least "American" feeling place that is an actual state. There is a medium sized native Hawaiian population that in some places will make you feel very out of place along with a fledgling but vocal independence movement.

 

In fact the island of Ni'ihau, the most northern one off of Kaua'i, you cant even travel to unless you are a native Hawaiian. Other places like Moloka'i make it very difficult to visit by having virtually no infrastructure for tourism. Even on tourist friendly islands like Maui there are places you can go that you'll feel very out of place and unwelcome. 

 

To assume the Hawaiian islands are uniformly "American" just because they are a state really isn't the reality of the situation-- there are many places in Hawaii that are just as rural, poor, and poverty stricken as you mention with foreign countries. 

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