Two women have documented the travel struggles that ensued after they landed in Hawaii only to be informed that they had gotten the wrong type of Covid test and would need to return to California in a series of viral TikToks.
Sarah Blackwood and Abbey Campbell, from North Carolina, flew to Honolulu, Hawaii, this week for a summer vacation.
However, upon landing in Honolulu after flying out of Raleigh-Durham International Airport in North Carolina, with a layover in Georgia, the pair were informed that the state did not accept their Covid tests, and they would have to fly to California to take new ones before returning.
The friends detailed the situation in a TikTok uploaded on Tuesday, in which they revealed that they were informed by airport authorities that Hawaii requires travellers to have negative Covid tests from certain companies, or quarantine for 10 days.
“So basically you have to have it from certain companies, we didn’t know that, we just had our negative Covid tests, they won’t let you take a test here,” Campbell explained.
According to Blackwood, she and Campbell had to then purchase flights to Los Angeles International Airport, California, which they told Insider ending up costing $950, with Blackwood explaining in the TikTok that they would then be flying back to Honolulu after they received their results.
She also noted that they had had to call their Airbnb and car rentals and “push everything back,” and wasted a “sh*t ton of money and a whole day in Honolulu”.
The TikTok, which has been viewed more than 1.3m times, was met with varied reactions, with some expressing their sympathy for the expensive mistake while others pointed out that the requirements for travellers are clear on Hawaii’s website.
According to Hawaii’s Covid website, the state only accepts “certified clinical laboratory improvement amendment (CLIA) lab test results from trusted testing and travel partners,” noting that these include Walgreens and some CVS Health locations.
“I just got back. The Hawaii travel site was VERY clear,” one person commented, while another said: “Do your research, I don’t feel sorry.”
In a follow-up video, the pair acknowledged that they had messed up and not read the instructions clearly, but also revealed that they were both vaccinated.
“We read wrong, we didn’t read thoroughly enough,” Blackwood revealed, adding that they had gotten Covid tests at a primary care doctor that was not listed on Hawaii’s website.
Blackwood then encouraged her followers to use their mistake as a “lesson,” before asking that viewers not be “mean” as they are “having a really hard time right now”.
“We know we f**ked up, we’re not trying to spread Covid okay? We just want to go visit Honolulu and Maui,” she continued, before adding: “Use us as a lesson. We’re f**king stupid and we’re paying for it.”
According to the friends, they also weren’t the only ones who had made the mistake, as they told Insider that when they landed in Los Angeles, they “met a total of like six couples that were there for the same reason”.
Blackwood and Campbell also said that they were recognised by a few people in the airport due to their viral TikTok, with Blackwood revealing that they had been asked if they needed help.
After waiting for six hours in the Los Angeles airport to receive their results, Campbell and Blackwood were able to catch a standby flight back to Honolulu.
The friends eventually made it to their Airbnb in Hawaii after 40 hours of travelling, with a final TikTok showing them lying on the beach.
While viewers had criticised Blackwood and Campbell for not reading the state’s requirements after their initial TikTok, their final video was mostly met with positive comments, with many sharing their happiness that the friends had finally made it to their destination.
“The happy ending we’ve all been waiting for,” one person commented, while another said: “Yay so glad y’all made it!”