Travel industry pushes to end COVID restrictions
Airlines and other tourism-related businesses are pushing the White House to draw up a plan to boost international travel and eliminate restrictions. "The time to plan for and chart a defined road map to reopen international travel is now," the groups wrote in a letter to White House virus-response coordinator Jeffrey Zients. They want people who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 to be exempt from testing requirements before entering the U.S. They also want the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to say that vaccinated people can travel safely.
Landline adds car service
A year after launching bus-to-airport service in Duluth and Mankato to connect fliers to Sun Country flights out of Minneapolis, Landline has started serving more cities with a different model: car service. Its new Landline Select rides can seat up to four people to and from Duluth, Mankato, St. Cloud, Rochester, Brainerd, La Crosse, Wis., and Eau Claire, Wis., in addition to continued bus service for Duluth. "We're already connecting people to airlines with buses. Why not do it with private cars?" said CEO David Sunde. Landline still lets passengers book through their site to connect to any flight; a round-trip between Duluth and MSP by bus last weekend was $64.
Maskless in Waikiki
Tourists are traveling to Hawaii in larger numbers than anticipated, and many are wandering around Waikiki without masks, despite a statewide mandate to wear them in public. "We carry our masks around and if we walk into an establishment we'll wear one, and if people look like they're uncomfortable with us around, we'll put one on. But otherwise, like I said where we come from, people are really not required to wear them," Wisconsin visitor Larry Dopke said. Hawaii's "Safe Travels" program reported that about 28,000 people flew into and throughout the islands on March 20, the most since the pandemic began.