Authorities in American Samoa are now requiring proof of Covid-19 vaccination to enter the territory.
The American Samoa Covid-19 Task Force made the official announcement as the territorial government is preparing for Monday's test flight from Honolulu.
The test flight with some 150 passengers including government officials, will begin to test the new TALOFA PASS web-system application, a component of the Safe Travels American Samoa (STAS) initiative that screens travellers with pre-travel requirements to enter the territory.
Since the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a full biological licence for the Pfizer vaccine for those 16 and over, the vaccination is now a requirement, according to the task force.
The latest Covid-19 declaration issued August 13 made vaccination a condition of entry as soon as the FDA fully approved a vaccine.
Children who are 12 to 15 years old may be vaccinated under an Emergency Use Authorisation.
The territory's acting governor Talauega Eleasalo Ale says he cannot express enough the importance of eligible American Samoa residents getting vaccinated as soon as possible. And he encouraged all those who are eligible to go get their shots.
Talauega, who is also chairman of the task force, says the implementation of the TALOFA PASS system means "we are one step closer to opening up our borders. So we must do what it takes to stay safe and give our local public health system a jumpstart to responding and containing the possible spread of the virus."
Flights into American Samoa are set to resume on September 13 with a commercial air service by Hawaiian Airlines between Honolulu and Pago Pago.
There is only one other flight planned for September while the schedule for October remains under review.
The TALOFA PASS web-system aims to streamline the list of processes and requirements by providing a centralised portal whereby returning residents and travellers can create personalised profiles to upload trip details, vaccination cards, required documents, and receive periodic notifications for proof of Covid-19 PCR test results.