We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Planning:Where and how to begin?

Boston...
Level Contributor
722 posts
94 reviews
Save Topic
Planning:Where and how to begin?

We just started thinking maybe a Hawaii trip. I am totally clueless as how to start, as you must be able to tell by now, our first time. Help..

washington
Destination Expert
for Maui
Level Contributor
22,178 posts
18 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Planning:Where and how to begin?

Start by reading the info to the upper right on this page, especially the "summary of each island".

Pick up a copy of "Hawaii for Dummies"...sorry title but a great book full of good info for you.

Most of us advise at least one week per island, you can see two smaller ones in 10 days but it more of an overview.

When you pick your island or islands post on those forums and let us know how long you have for your stay and what your nightly budget will be. It's always helpful to know when you are traveling and who is coming with you.

New England
Level Contributor
1,260 posts
179 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Planning:Where and how to begin?

Hey Sheri, I am from the east coast too. We just returned from our first trip to Hawaii. a couple of things that we considered in no particular order.

Decide the time of year you want to go . We choose March for the whales.

I bought Frommer's guide because that is usually my go to guide. I then took another one out of the library andf ended up buying that one too. The books were really helpful in helping me decide where to go.

I found that the research was more intensive than for some of our other trips to eg. Mexico, Aruba.

I really liked reading trip reports on here and found some blogs that had pictures. That was really good for me for the visual.

Another helpful tool was a free map of Maui from Air Maui. I will look for that link for you. Hope I can find it.It is one of my treasured souvenirs, it is all taped together from being used so much.

Once I decided on the island I wanted to spend the most time the next decision was condo or hotel.

Hope this helps.

Planning is lots of fun. You will find some really helpful people on these forums.

New England
Level Contributor
1,260 posts
179 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Planning:Where and how to begin?

tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g29220-i86-k718218…

Hope this works.

Kapaa, Hawaii
Destination Expert
for Maui, Hana, Oahu
Level Contributor
44,411 posts
3 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Planning:Where and how to begin?

Start your research about which island or islands to visit. 10 nights is the minimum amount of time to visit 2 islands, excluding the big island of Hawaii just due to it's size. Then decide on which time of year you can or would like to come. After that, it's fairly easy.

California
Destination Expert
for Oahu
Level Contributor
43,932 posts
19 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Planning:Where and how to begin?

No worries. We were all in your shoes at one time.

+ Pick up a good travel guidebook that covers all the Islands. "Hawaii for Dummies" is recommended consistently here. And get a good map of the State of Hawaii, and the individual Islands as well. Pull up www.gohawaii.com. It's terribly sketchy and commercial, but helpful for first-timers.

+ Determine when you want to travel ... and the number of NIGHTS you will be in Hawaii.

+ As a general rule, based on years of collective experience, we recommend at least 5 nights on any Island ... 7 on the Big island of Hawaii (it's BIG!).

+ Understand that you will need a car on any of the major Islands with the exception of the City of Honolulu on the Island of Oahu.

+ Transitioning between Islands will consume at least 1/2 day. If you have enough nights for more than one Island, you will need to fly between them. The only ferry service is between Maui and the Islands of Lanai and Molokai.

+ The time of the year and the side of the Island make a difference weather-wise.

+ Establish a nightly accommodations budget. If you want us to help you with accommodations, we'll need that number.

+ Focus on choosing your Island/s first - then your accommodations, activities, restaurants, etc. This is to keep you sane.

+ Most of us plan our own travel, including air. We can help you.

+ Once you have chosen your Island/s, post questions on that Island's Forum. Start reading down through the individual Island Forums for ideas.

Questions? :o)

Boston...
Level Contributor
722 posts
94 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Planning:Where and how to begin?

How many nights in total does everyone recommend ? My husband and are both self-employed and can't take more than 10 days total. Not sure that this would give us enough time. I will pick up a book this week. I can tell that this trip is not going to be easy to plan as our others as newenglander pointed out..going to a Caribbean island pretty simple, compared to this. Thanks for the help, I need it.

Colorado
Level Contributor
1,694 posts
78 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Planning:Where and how to begin?

It may not be easy...but it's totally worth it! And really it's not that hard....maybe we could start with why do you want to come to Hawaii and what do you want to see or do mostly ?

California
Destination Expert
for Oahu
Level Contributor
43,932 posts
19 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Planning:Where and how to begin?

Please don't compare Hawaii to the Caribbean. Hawaii is a State ... US health and safety, currency, language, roads. And there is a TON of things to do on each of the major Islands!

The choice is yours. Chose one Island and enjoy! Perhaps 2 with 10 nights.

It would help us if we knew what you want to do on Hawaii ... what draws you to Hawaii ... and when you want to come.

New England
Level Contributor
1,260 posts
179 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Planning:Where and how to begin?

ohh Sheri, I hope I did not discourage you. It is so gorgeous here. The planning got sort of addicting for me. Once you have your island or islands picked it is easier. Some people plan too much,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, I might be in that category. LOL

Nanaimo, Canada
Level Contributor
24,028 posts
85 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Planning:Where and how to begin?

With your business, is there a time that you CAN NOT go to Hawaii?

Jan - March are wonderful, to get away from your horrible winters, but also for the glorious whales!

May is beautiful for the slower pace, and the jacarandas are in bloom, and Lei Day, and the Maui Onion Festival. Okay, I love Maui onions! You have to be on Maui to attend that one.

July and August are busy too, because of family holidays.

September and October is slower again, due to kids returning to school.

November is slow at the beginning, super busy again during American Thanksgiving.

Beginning of December is slow again, until Christmas kicks into full swing.

I missed April! Lots of condos lower their price mid way through April as the whales depart. But some years Easter is thrown in the mix, and it can be expensive then.

You will want to rent a car for the whole time there too, with the exception of Oahu. Although, it is nice to have a car for a couple of days on Oahu to get out of the city and see the beautiful North Shore.

Don't forget, you will have a slow first day, due to jet lag.