Travel Basics

What to Pack

Hawaii's casual attitude makes packing a breeze. For daytime, shorts, t-shirts, sandals and a swimsuit are usually all that's needed. For evening, sundresses for women and casual trousers and a shirt for men will take you most places in style. And leave space in your luggage for souvenirs, gifts and some real Aloha wear to take home.

When to Visit

Unlike other destinations, Hawaii's "high" and "low" seasons aren't dictated by the weather here, which is always great, but rather the weather everywhere else. Expect premium rates during the winter months, mid-December through March. Family travel is most popular during the summer. Spring and Autumn, while considered "low" season, offer great value and fewer visitors.

Chargers and Adaptors

Don't forget to bring your chargers and adaptors. The current voltage in the US is 110V.

Emergency


In case of emergency call 911 for Police and Fire Department.

Hawaiian Time

There's no Daylight Savings Time in Hawaii. During the months when it's not in effect on the US mainland, Hawaii is two hours behind the West Coast, four hours behind the Midwest and five hours behind the East. Add an hour to those differentials during DST. Hawaii time is 10/11 hours behind the UK depending on BST.

Health Insurance Coverage

There are no vaccination requirements for any international traveller to the USA. Travel insurance, including medical cover, is highly recommended.

Safety

Keeping safe in Hawaii is simple. Just follow the same common sense rules that you would follow anywhere. Lock your car and keep your valuables within sight and reach. Dialing 911 connects you to emergency assistance for police, fire and ambulance. In Hawaii, ocean safety is very important. If advised not to swim, make sure you don't. Heed the international signage at local beaches, which alerts you to rough sea conditions, rip currents, jellyfish and high surf. When hiking the wilderness, be sure to check in with park rangers first.

Taxes

The United States has no VAT (value added tax), but Hawaii does have a state sales tax on all purchases, including groceries. There is also a hotel room tax and a road-use tax on car rentals.

Telephone Services

The telephone code for the State of Hawaii is 808. Local calls on each island are 50 cents from a public phone. Long distance charges vary by location and telephone service provider. Phone cards are available at retail stores throughout the islands.

Phoning Home
To call the UK you will need to ring the outgoing international code, then 44 (for UK), the STD code minus the zero (e.g. 20 for London) and the number.

Tourist Information while in Hawaii

Big Island, Tel. 1-800-648-2441
Kauai, Tel. 1-800-262-1400
Maui, Tel. 1-800-525-6284
Lanai, Tel. 1-800- 947-4774
Oahu, Tel. 1-877-525-6248
Molokai, Tel. 1-800-800-6367

Bus Information: TheBus (Oahu), Tel. 848-5555

Transportation

Most visitors rent cars, as only on Oahu will you find a public bus system, called "The Bus". Traffic in Hawaii drives on the right and the speed limit within residential areas is 25 mph, outside 50 mph, and 55 mph on highways. It is compulsory to wear a seat belt when you're in the front seat and any alcohol for drivers is prohibited. You are allowed to turn right at a red-light after giving way to traffic except when there is a sign saying otherwise.