Your Views for November 24

Safe Travels frustrating

My wife needed hospital treatment in Honolulu. Our Hilo clinic provided us with COVID-19 testing. We were negative. I went to the Safe Travels site and registered each of us.


The home page has a note that “it is required that all travelers provide the information in the required fields marked with an asterisk (*).” The Trip Details form has asterisks but does not restate this. It has a blank for “Quarantine Exemption Approval Confirmation ID.” I looked for an ID on our test forms. Finding none, I looked for instructions to no avail. We left.

Upon our return, the fun began.

Hilo arrival procedures make several assumptions: that people have an account and a cellphone with a camera and display, and that passengers have a QR (quick response) code printed or on cellphones.

My wife and I have cellphones with cameras. I had registered her with Safe Travels, so she needed her password to log on. I used a secure password (suggested and memorized by our browser) that I could not remember. Because she has not put her email account on her phone, we could not reset her password.

I ended up making three trips to the entry kiosks. The whole process was a mess. As it turns out, I was one click away from completing the forms before we left. That one question, about a “Confirmation ID,” stalled me out.

After a long day of surgery for my wife and hoping to get her home to rest, I was very frustrated with Hawaii County’s Safe Travel procedures.

I attempted to give feedback on the state’s travel website, but the link was dead.

Welcome to Hilo: Bend over, and have a nice day.

Gerry Baldwin


Masks and gloves

Regarding the size of the COVID-19 virus and wearing a mask.

Yes, the size of the virus is very, very small compared to the openings in the mask mesh. But, just as a snowflake is frozen water attached to a speck of dust, the COVID virus is attached to water vapor. This will increase the size so as to be caught in the mask and not in someone else’s lungs.

And if I may, why are people not wearing some kind of gloves once exiting their cars and removing the gloves before re-entering their cars while out and about? It would give and added layer of protection.

Be safe, and happy holidays.


Phil Shwarz


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the Star-Advertiser's TERMS OF SERVICE. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. To report comments that you believe do not follow our guidelines, email