When you’re planning a trip to Hawaii, there are a million pieces of advice to consider. Which hotel do I book? Should I rent a car? How much luggage do I need? Our growing community of Facebook fans kindly offered these travel tips which they’ve learned while traveling to Hawaii.
1. Pack light, pack smart
People take too much stuff! Carry a suitcase small enough to use as a carry-on. You save $25/person each way, and you know it is going to arrive with you. I also take throw-away clothes. Things you know you are going to throw away, wear once or twice then discard them at your destination, leaving room for souvenirs. — Mary P.
We always travel with just one carry-on and a personal item! Do not check bags! — Tom C.
You don’t need to bring a hat – you can buy one for $3.99 at an ABC store (there is one on nearly every corner in Waikiki) and don’t bring a lot of shirts – you can buy six for $20 at the International Marketplace. — Alan B.
I also travel light. Buying a gift card from a place like Walmart to get necessities (toiletries, extra film, camera batteries, etc) once I get to my destination. I only pack a travel toothbrush, toothpaste, and deodorant in case I get stuck somewhere longer then planned. — Kelly H.
Always pack garbage bags for dirty clothes. — Cristina E.R.
2. Find the best accommodations
We find our best resort suite at vrbo.com, and then have that checked out with tripadvisor.com just to make sure its a good place with good reviews from actual vacationers. Every trip this works best for us! — Rick J.
Get a “real” look at resorts (big & small). The reviews are unbiased and give you info about what rooms are ocean front, ocean view, garden view, etc. Search online for your resort (Google Maps is a good option) and see just how close to the ocean they really are. — Diana G.
3. Bring these in your carry-on luggage
Plane pillow and blanket! — Tracy T.
Your own snacks. — Rona R.
I learned the hard way, always, ALWAYS carry an extra set of clothes in your carry on in case your luggage gets lost! — Robert P.
4. Find Deals Before Your Trip
If you’re staying in a condo, be sure to get the local grocery stores discount cards, check their ads before leaving. Buy the local entertainment book for discounts. — Julie D.R.
Do your research!!! Look into what there is to do there and decide what you want to do then go about looking for any deals for that area. Like coupons and such. Pay for as much ahead of time as you can and then go and have a good time!! — Tracy B.
5. Avoid expensive transportation fees
You don’t need to rent a car if you go to Waikiki. TheBus (that’s what they call it) is $2.50 each way and for that price you can go pretty much anywhere on the island of Oahu. If you stay at an Ohana Hotel, you can get a free shuttle to the Ala Moana Shopping Center, the biggest in Hawaii. — Alan B.
What people don’t realize is that it costs to park your rental car every night (on the street and even at your hotel). There is no free parking in Honolulu. The public bus goes all over the island and only costs $2.50, and you can go literally all around the island, don’t rent a car it will save you BIG on your vacation. — Brenda and Brian Y.
I take the time to research for the least costly transportation (airfare, bus, train, boat, etc) to my destination. I will even book different airlines and have long layovers if it saves me money. — Kelly H.
6. Get out of the city
Best tip of all: Get out of the city & see the other side of the island. — Marv H.
7. Use a local travel agent
I recommend a Hawaiian based travel agent when booking a trip to the islands. — Betsy W.
8. Make friends with the locals
My tip is to make friends with the locals … they know the greatest places to shop – eat – see , some hidden some not so much …. so loved every minute we were there — Karen N.B.
Eat Local! Find the Mom & Pop type places because they’re the best places to eat while in Hawaii and slightly cheaper! — Pene T.D.
9. Cherish every moment
Live your life for sun. — Michelle S.
10. Plan on coming back to Hawaii
I make a list of everything I would like to do and see on the trip so I can refer to it but I do not try to get it all done or cram too much into each day. Whatever I don’t get to on the list I figure just gives me the perfect reason to plan for another return trip. — Kelly H.
Create a loose itinerary so you have an idea of what you want to do, you’re not wasting time trying to figure it out. — Julie D.R.
Seeing more of less is always better than less of more. Remember, you will always be back. It is Hawai’i. — Dave B.
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About the author
Jonah Kaimana is a blogger and social media specialist at Discover Hawaii Tours. Jonah was born and raised on the island of Oahu and writes about company news and related updates. Jonah loves sharing the wonders of Hawaii with readers around the world. Read more of Jonah's blog posts.