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Family with a 5yr old girl - do we need a car in Kauai???

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Family with a 5yr old girl - do we need a car in Kauai???

Hi everyone, we feel like not very well prepared for a Christmas trip... not being able to decide whether or not to rent a car in Kauai.

We booked Grand Hyatt Resort in Poipu. If we travel all the way from Asia, we probably won't be in a good shape to drive for a couple of days from the moment we arrive.

With a 5.5 year old daughter (who is really keen about all sort of animals but probably not strong enough to walk around for hours), we are not very adventurous to think hiking or walking for long. Not brave enough to walk around our selves in the middle of canyon etc although we would definitely NOT want to miss out a couple of top attractions....

If we are brave enough to take a heli tour once around the island/ canyon, do you think we would still need to rent a car? (FYI - we booked a car in maui and honolulu)

We would still want to go around to see another nice beach (to see sea turtles etc) and perhaps go out to other nice restaurants...but didn't think enough about how much we'll be out of resort and how much inside the resort...

What would be a easy/relaxing but still child-friendly way of spending 6 days there over Christmas? Any recommendations/advice/tips are welcome!!!

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1. Re: Family with a 5yr old girl - do we need a car in Kauai???

The short answer is yes, you will need a car on Kauai.

It will be an expensive trip just to Poipu in a cab and you will need a car to spend your time wisely and do the exploring you have mentioned above (canyon, beaches, etc.).

The island isn't that big, but it's big enough that a car is the only practical way to visit, go sightseeing, go to dinner and so on. It will make your trip much more enjoyable.

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2. Re: Family with a 5yr old girl - do we need a car in Kauai???

I wouldn't dream of being without a vehicle on Kauai. The Island is extremely easy to navigate. Most visitors rent a car. As previously mentioned the taxi fare alone to and from LIH would be steep.

The only issue I see now that could prove troublesome is......the lack of cars available for your time period (Holidays/Christmas)...or the astronomical prices they will be charging. Most folks secure a car reservation well in advance (months ago)

Safe Travels

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3. Re: Family with a 5yr old girl - do we need a car in Kauai???

you definatly need a car

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4. Re: Family with a 5yr old girl - do we need a car in Kauai???

Yes. You need a car on Kauai.

As others have mentioned, you'd better hurry to get one reserved for the very busy Christmas holiday.

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5. Re: Family with a 5yr old girl - do we need a car in Kauai???

I would rent a car on Kauai vs renting on Oahu. If you don't rent, The Hyatt can arrange tours for you. Its a fabulous resort and a 5 yr old will love just hanging there, but there is more to see and do on the island. If you do decide to rent a car, do it yesterday. You will get sticker shock by booking so late.

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6. Re: Family with a 5yr old girl - do we need a car in Kauai???

If you're thinking it might be like Waikiki, with lots in walking distance and public buses galore, you're going to be surprised.

Staying at the Hyatt without a car means you're pretty much stuck there outside of a 20 minute or so to another beach and a couple of places to eat. How are you getting from and to the airport? Figure each of those cab fares are going to cost you around $75 each. Not to speak of getting around the island and seeing anything.

I can't imagine being on Kauai without a car but it's you're choice. At this point getting a car for Christmas at a price you can swallow might be difficult.

Edited: 02 December 2011, 17:06
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La Mirada...
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7. Re: Family with a 5yr old girl - do we need a car in Kauai???

Almost all visitors to Maui or Kauai will rent a car - it's quite hard to get around without one. Cabs are horribly expensive and public transportation is not all that good. Without a car, you'll miss the best parts of each island.

Waikiki is a different story. You'll be better off without a car in Waikiki. Parking is awful, expensive and driving is a pain. Pubic transportation is excellent and you can walk to lots of stuff. If you want to explore outside of Waikiki, arrange a car rental for a day or two.

Try DHCR - they're highly recommended here on TA (I've used them), no money up front and good rates:

http://www.discounthawaiicarrental.com/

3Chihuahuas

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8. Re: Family with a 5yr old girl - do we need a car in Kauai???

Ok, you do need to rent a car while staying at the Hyatt on Kauai, for all the reasons above. It will just make things more simple. Lots of restaurant choices a mile or two away, but too far to walk with a 5 year old. Don't forget to tip the Valet when they bring the car to you at the Lobby to take out (a few dollars) but when you return it after using it, you don't need to tip anything.

We have a now 7 year old and she loves the pools and lagoons at the Grand Hyatt.

I see you are staying at other Hyatt's on the islands. When we were in Waikiki last year, we didn't rent a car for our entire week. It's only a $35 cab ride to the Hyatt from the airport, but much more to store a car in the parking garage across the street.

There are two car rental places inside the Hyatt Waikiki, so if you wanted to rent for a day to go to the north shore, it would be easy to get a car for the day. They keep them in the basement. Taxi's are plentiful and cheap in Waikiki if going to restaurants, etc.

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San Diego...
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9. Re: Family with a 5yr old girl - do we need a car in Kauai???

You could play it by ear but the cost will rise. There are rental cars available at the Hyatt but you'll likely pay more than booking in advance. They even have hourly rentals from some outfit promising green cars (hybrids) or at least they did the last time I was in their lot.

also see FAQ #5

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10. Re: Family with a 5yr old girl - do we need a car in Kauai???

Aloha from Kaua'i!

I cannot imagine staying here and not renting a car - you will either be paying for taxi fare/van type tours - or just staying in the immediate vicinity of the Grand Hyatt Kaua'i.

While the Grand Hyatt is amazing and has tons of amenities - you will be missing the whole rest of the island - and to me, that would be a real shame.

The Grand Hyatt does also have the "green cars" for rent at their property - although I am not familiar with the rates. They are lined up in the parking lot.

Malama Pono,

Janet