Hawaii: Local Travel Info
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Internal Flights and Major International Airports for Hawaii
Honolulu International Airport on the island of Oahu is currently Hawaii’s major airport serving all visitors travelling to or from the Hawaiian Islands. It serves as the gateway to the other Hawaiian Islands. Every major US carrier and over 15 international carriers service Honolulu International Airport making it easy for visitors to fly non-stop to the islands. Many inter-island flights depart from Honolulu International Airport as well. Inter-Island Airports are located at Kona and Hilo on the Big Island, Kauai, Maui, and Molokai. Airlines servicing inter-island travel are Go Airlines, Hawaiian Airlines, Island Air, Pacific Wings.
Getting To and From Inter-Island Airports
Hawaii’s main airport on Oahu is located just west of downtown Honolulu and has many transportation options for arriving at your hotel or lodgings outside of hotel shuttle buses. Your best option is the Airport Waikiki Express shuttle bus economically priced at $9 for one-way or $15 for roundtrip. The Waikiki Express stops at all major hotels along the most popular strip of Honolulu, Waikiki Beach. It runs 24 hours a day. Taxis are also very common and cost around $35-$40 for a fare to Waikiki. Rental Cars are not entirely necessary if spending the bulk of your holiday in Honolulu on Oahu.
Airport transportation at one of the Inter-Island airports on the Big Island, Kauai, Maui, or Molokai may be easiest via rental car since most visitors will want to explore the islands many breathtaking sites at a leisurely pace. However, as with most popular tourist destinations, all of the Hawaiian Islands have access to car rentals, taxis, and shuttles services 24 hours a day.
Travel Costs in Hawaii
Shuttle buses and public transportation buses are your most economical way of getting around in Hawaii with costs staying around $1-$10 if not free. Rental cars and taxis vary in cost depending on the island and whether you’re travelling at peak times. Taxi fares usually start with a drop fee of $3 and fares are calculated at about $2.50 to $3.00 per mile. If you plan to be driving around the island a lot then maybe a rental car is better for your budget. Check for online deals and costs will vary depending on package rates and car classes. Motorcycles, mopeds, and scooters are another travel option and can be rented for as little as $50 per day.
Rental Cars in Hawaii
Rental cars are a great way to experience the Hawaiian Islands on your own. You can leisurely take your own pace touring, visiting beaches, and exploring the sites around the island. Your best rental car deals are found online or as part of your vacation package. Also, make note that with limited space on the island for car inventory, shipping fuel from the mainland, and peak travel times, car rentals in Hawaii tend to be slightly more expensive than your usual US city. For those travellers wishing to rent GREEN, Maui boasts the world’s first ever biodiesel cars for rent!
To book car rental in Hawaii online, view our Car Hire section for Hawaii. We offer Ok Alpha users the latest special offers and best rates available for car hire in Hawaii. We advise you book your Hawaii hire car in advance so you can pick it up and drop it off directly at the airport.
Drivers License Requirements in Hawaii
Check with your rental car company or your consulate that your driver’s license is valid in the United States - most likely you’ll only be required to provide your driver’s license and passport when picking up the rental car. It is highly recommended that you purchase the additional car rental insurance for vehicle damage or personal injury if you aren’t already required to do so.
Driving Rules in Hawaii
The United States drives on the right side of the road and seatbelts are required at all times. Highway speeds are posted in miles per hour and can range from 55 to 70 mph. Average road speeds range from 15 mph in school zones to the more common 45 mph. Parking is generally metered so make sure to have change. Pay attention to traffic signs and parking restrictions as they are posted everywhere to guide you. Should you be ticketed, instructions will be posted on the ticket and additional fines will be assessed when you turn in your rental car. Make note that pedestrians always have the right of way in the United States.
Buses in Hawaii
Public transportation in the Hawaiian Islands is extremely economical with fares as low as $0.50 for shuttles and $1.50 for one-way adult fares. Passes good for up to a month of unlimited travel can be purchased for as low as $15. There are also discount fares for children, seniors, and disabled passengers. Be sure to make note on restrictions for carry-on items - only bring bags or backpacks that can fit in your lap or under your seat.
Taxis in Hawaii
Taxis are available in Hawaii 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Airports, hotels, and restaurants attract most taxi traffic but your host or concierge can arrange one for you. Taxicabs are heavily regulated in Hawaii and are very safe and reliable but be wary of your belongings as cab companies claim no responsibility for items left behind. Fares start with $3.00 on the meter, and $3.00 is then added for every additional mile with about $0.50-$1.00 per minute of additional wait time. Cabs are tipped at 15% to 20%.
Hitchhiking in Hawaii
In Hawaii and most metropolitan areas of the United States, the laws for where it is permissible to hitchhike are up to interpretation by law enforcement. Pedestrians are definitely restricted from highways and other high-speed roadways. Although you can try asking for a ride from a friendly passerby, most Americans do not pick up unknown hitchhikers or hitchhike themselves due to safety concerns.