General travel safety and security tips are a key to an enjoyable travel experience. Due to heightened airline security measures and changing FAA policies and procedures, it is imperative you are as prepared as possible for your trip.
General Travel Safety Tips
Make the most of any vacation by taking note of the following travel tips. We recommend that you print a copy of this list as a reminder to make safety your top priority. Also keep a printed copy of your domestic or international travel insurance plan just in case.
- Check the status of your flight before heading the airport. At least an hour (two hours for international flights) before your flight departs most airlines want you to check-in.
- Allow plenty of extra time at the airport (generally 2 hours prior to departure). Changing security procedures have increased the time needed to check in. Build in more time if traveling with young children, infants or people with disabilities.
- Check with your airline to see if curbside check-in is available.
- FAA guidelines are being updated often. Find the latest from the FAA at www.FAA.gov.
- Remember most airlines only allow travelers one carry-on item plus one personal item such as a purse, briefcase, laptop computer, or small book bag-style backpack. Other personal items allowed include coats, child safety seats, diaper bags, books or newspapers, small bags of food and assistance devices such as wheelchairs, walkers and oxygen. These carry-on allowances vary from carrier to carrier. Before leaving home confirm what is allowed with your carrier .
Travel Safety Tips at the Airport
- Check www.tsa.gov for the most up to date information to get you through security quickly.
- Keep your bags and personal belongings within reach at all times.
- Do not accept packages from strangers.
- Joking about terrorism, weapons, explosives, or other threats while going through the security checkpoint will likely lead to issues with the TSA personnel.
Checking-In and Security Checkpoint
- Adult passengers are required to bring a government-issued photo ID. If you do not have one of these available, bring two pieces of ID, one of which must be from a governmental authority.
- Remember, only ticketed passengers are allowed beyond the security checkpoint. Be prepared to show identification at the ticket counter and security checkpoint.
- Electronic items such as laptop computers and cell phones may be subject to additional screening. Be prepared to power on electronic items for screening personnel. Also, be prepared to remove your laptop from its travel case so it can be X-rayed separately.
International Security Tips
- Lost passport: Call local police and the consulate. Temporary passports are available. Pack a photocopy of your passport separately from the original and carry an additional passport picture to expedite the replacement process in the event of a lost or stolen passport.
- In the event of a riot or civil unrest, go to your hotel and call the consulate and your airline. Do not go to the airport without a confirmed ticket or assurance that it is safe.
- International law requires that the American consulate (U.S. Interests Section, if no consulate) be notified if you are arrested or detained. You are entitled to a timely visit by a consular officer. They will notify family, aid in money transfer, and ensure you receive fair treatment.
General Security Tips
Whether you are traveling domestically or abroad, don’t become a victim.
- Do not carry large quantities of cash.
- Do not carry jewelry, wallets, or purses—wear a non-visible money belt. Transfer money from your money belt to pockets in your hotel room or in a bathroom.
- Use your dress and appearance to blend in with the crowd. Take the time to research local dress codes, so as not to stand out.
- Once you have arrived, keep your airline tickets in a separate, secure location from your passport. Also, remember your credit card number is on your airline ticket!
- When traveling to a foreign country, always carry the required travel documents such as your passport, visa and tourist cards.
- Be aware of local scam artists.
- Always inform others of your plans (family, consulate/embassy).
- Keep your camera hidden until you are ready to use it. Use tote bags instead of camera bags. Do not hang your camera around your neck.
- Avoid viewing maps in wide-open spaces.
- Leave copies of all your information (credit cards, passport numbers, travelers checks, air tickets) with family or friends at home.
- Avoid walking alone at night.
- Do not take shortcuts. Stay on well-traveled streets.
- Withdraw money from ATMs only during daylight hours, preferably in banks or hotels.
- Never leave valuables in plain view in your car. Lock items in your trunk before reaching your destination.
Christmas in Hawaii was inspired by past blog posts from Megan Shute. Megan is a professional write who resides on Oahu. She compiled photographs from social media that supports Oahu’s local attractions and features Christmas time in Hawaii.
Now that Thanksgiving has come and gone, it’s officially the Christmas season. When you think of a traditional holiday season, the Hawaiian Islands are probably the last place to cross your mind. After all, you won’t find freezing temperatures or snow here, unless you head to the summit of the Big Island’s Mauna Kea, that is. However, Christmas in Hawaii is pretty incredible, and here are eleven reasons why.
Surfing Hawaiian Santa is so much cooler than regular Santa
Santa can shed his big, red suit and clunky boots in this tropical climate and don a festive Hawaiian shirt instead – or simply not zip up his suit.
Make a “snowman” on the beach.
You won’t have to worry about your sandman melting though you might have to worry about your creation being swept away with the tide…
Witness Santa arriving on an outrigger canoe
Because everyone knows that reindeer don’t thrive in a tropical climate. Santa arrives on Waikiki Beach by outrigger canoe.
Experience the beautiful lights that adorn Honolulu Hale
The beautiful light displays at the Honolulu Hale will be up through January 1 and are an absolute must-visit in the Hawaiian capital.
Drive thru a holiday wonderland at Aloha Stadium
Enjoy a leisurely drive through a Christmas landscape.
Blast the AC while drinking hot chocolate
It may be 80 degrees outside, but we can pretend we live in a winter wonderland, can’t we?
See someone surfing in a Santa hat
What’s better than a holiday trip to the beach?
See blooming poinsettias and decked out palm trees
Did you know that poinsettias can grow as tall as trees in Hawaii, and that they bloom near December 25?
You never have to worry about bad weather changing your holiday plans
There will be no blizzard that forces you to miss your annual family holiday celebration in Hawaii.
Christmas dinner is followed by a trip to the beach — wearing Santa hats and leis, of course
Because we want to be festive AND still enjoy our days off at the beach. Besides, what’s better than a holiday trip to the beach?
Telling other “Mele Kalikimaka” instead of “Merry Christmas”
Bing Crosby said it best: “Mele Kalikimaka is Hawaii’s way to say Merry Christmas to you.”
Hawaiian Christmas music is quite unique
What other states in America can say that they have completely unique Christmas tunes sung by the famous Bing Crosby?
Hawaii’s Fifteenth Proclamation
Recently, the Governor issued Hawaii’s fifteenth proclamation. COVID-19 is still present in Hawaii. Our new cases and hospitalizations are the lowest in the country thanks to our safe practices. The official declaration continues to allow business to operate with care. The declaration furthers the responsibility for care to visitors and residents alike.
The proclamation mandates that all persons shall wear a face covering over their nose and mouth when in public. Additionally, the proclamation extends to our hotel industry by requiring hotels to publish a COVID-19 Health and Safety Plan. Each hotel is now responsible for how to deal with any guests who become COVID- 19 positive. Hotels are also responsible for how to deal with any guest who have been identified as a close contact of someone who is positive for COVID-19.
Hotel Health and Safety Plans
Hawaii hotels tend to be busy and filled with travelers from all over the world. Thus increasing your chances of coming into contact with the coronavirus. Because you are not the only person who has access to your hotel room, whenever someone else enters your room, there is a possibility of increased risk. The risk is so high that hotels are investing in electrostatic sprayers and other technologies in an effort to combat the virus. Even with the technology, the risk is still present due to the high number of visitors lounging in the lobby, halls, elevators, and common areas.
A Less Risky Alternative
You do have a choice. You can avoid crowded hotels. Privacy during your stay is an option while you get the same level of Staff care. Your alternative option is Oahu’s legal short term rentals. The short term rental industry follows the same cleaning and sanitizing standards as the hotels. Legal short term rentals were allowed when Hawaii reached Tier 2 on March 15th. Ever since we have been accommodating guests. COVID-19 should have you rightfully concerned. But know you can avoid the crowds, have privacy, and not be subject to a hotel’s Health and Safety Plan. If you are still wanting the hotel experience be sure to read their plan. Know what enforcement the hotel may impose on you if it was decided that you were exposed while visiting their establishment.
O’ahu’s Back on the Wave Campaign
We all play a vital role in fighting COVID-19 and keeping our island safe. Hawaii Dream Realty LLC also does their part to reduce risk to our community, ohana, and guests. More recently, the company joined Oahu’s “Back on the Wave” campaign.
While safe practices were already in place, the company volunteered to complete the City and County’s health and safety survey. The survey affirmed the company’s safe health practices. The campaign provided training, personal protective equipment, sanitizer, and signage. While visiting look for the custom Back on the Wave signage at storefronts. Wherever you find the sign, inside you will see the steps they are taking to fight COVID-19. All in an effort to keep residents and visitors safe.
China has always been a part of Hawaii’s visitor demographic. So when the virus first appeared back in November 2019, the company took action prior to the March 2020 shutdown of Hawaii’s tourism. Today our processes and procedures are more formalized than they were at the start of the pandemic. But we have always made our guest’s and Staff’s safety and well being a top priority. Plexiglas partitions, social distancing, frequent hand washing and use of gloves, use of face masks, allowing rooms to “air out” for three days between guests, and use of sanitizing cleaners are all standard practice.
Best Price from a company that supports Oahu’s Back on the Wave Campaign
We have served Hawaii’s tourism industry since 2015. In the past, we predominately relied on third party booking partners such as Airbnb, VRBO, Booking.com and others. On Airbnb you can find hundreds of reviews on our properties and Staff. More recently, we established an Oahu Vacation Renters Marketplace making our properties bookable at comparable rates but without all the booking fees. We guarantee the lowest booking costs when you book directly with us either through the WaikikiStay.com website, as a walk-in visitor, or via phone. Be confident that you are getting a great deal, and with Oahu’s Back on the Wave Campaign, that you will be safe.
Hawaii Welcomes Visitors
As the main hub of the Hawaiian Islands, it is no wonder Oahu is the most visited island. Hawaii serves up big city fun in a small island setting. The Hawaii re-opening is just in time for the winter surf season. In other words, visitors can once again enjoy the best tropical venue the Unites States has to offer.
Winter Surf Session
Hawaii may be synonymous with surfing, but Oahu’s North Shore has earned special bragging rights as a hang 10 mecca. Whether guests head there to watch the waves or carve a few of their own, the destination offers unparalleled surfing thrills. The North Shore is just a one-hour drive from the world famous Waikiki Beach.
The North Shore of Oahu comes to life in the fall and Oahu is opening its doors to tourism after seven months of lock down. This seven mile miracle offers country living at its finest with tons of shops in historical Haleiwa town, outdoor activities, and beaches. Above all, in the wintertime, the North Shore is known for its picture perfect waves.
Hawaii Re-opening Test Program
Of course, the Hawaii re-opening still has concerns over COVID. Albeit the percentage of positive cases in Hawaii remains in the lower single digits. Similarly, Hawaii ranks in the lower percentile relative to the other states. Therefore to mitigate this concern, the Governor has implemented a testing program. The program allows visitors to arrive and test out of the 14-day mandatory quarantine period. Travelers must taken a Food and Drug Administration-approved COVID-19 test from a CLIA lab. The test result must be negative and within 72 hours of traveling to Hawaii in order to bypass a mandatory 14-day self-quarantine.
For the Hawaii re-opening, an accepted pre-arrival test is required of all arriving passengers who want to bypass the quarantine. The testing includes children of all ages. However, travelers who do not receive the results of their pre-arrivals test in time must stay in quarantine until they get their results back. The program is expected to expand the locations where travelers can get tested. Initially testing is available through CVS Pharmacy and through Kaiser Permanente.
Hawaii Re-opening Promotion
Hawaii is also actively working to safely open hiking trails, parks, attractions, restaurants and retail. To promote the re-opening, we are offering a discount available through bookings on WaikikiStay.com. Use promo code SAVE10 and get our low price guarantee. We offer a great selection of Waikiki vacation rentals for all budgets and family sizes. Our rentals are all right in the heart of Waikiki and all within walking distance to the world famous Waikiki Beach. Our vacation rental properties are privately owned and vary by amenities, building, square feet, number of guests, improvements, and views.
Experience Hawaii’s Cuisine
To experience Hawaii’s cuisine is to experience Hawaii’s culture. People from different countries, cultures, and religions fill our world. However, one universal bridge ties us all together. The universal bridges is food. Food fills bellies and imparts a feeling of nourishment upon us all. Furthermore, food crosses language barriers and opens hearts.
The cuisine of Hawaii is also referred to as local grinds. Our local grinds continue to evolve with influence from chefs from all over the world. Micro farms and aqua culture farmers deliver fresh and unique island foods daily. The island foods provide a true farm to table experience with a fusion blend to tantalize the taste buds. The selection of restaurants represents the cultural diversity found in Hawaii. Enjoy beautiful views, beach side locations, romantic and fun ambiances, lovely and elegant settings, creative and innovative menus, and great food from Hawaii’s restaurants that accommodate all price points.
Taste some of Hawaii’s favorite ono delicious foods including Kailua pig wrapped in ti leaves cooked in an underground imu oven. Try some fresh cubed fish known as poke served in with variety of sauces and seasonings. Yearning for some fast food Hawaii style then go for a bowl of Saimin. Saimin is an inexpensive broth with noodles similar to Japanese ramen. Eat your Saimin with chopsticks and then pick up the bowl and drink the broth. Subsequently, on the sweeter side, indulge in a malasadas deep-fried dough rolled in sugar best eaten warm. Finally, dig into an authentic Hawaii shave ice desert, a flavorful tropical cocktail. In summary, to experience island cuisine is to experience Hawaii.
Where to Eat
Finally, if you are looking for restaurant suggestions, our mobile app includes a selection of Waikiki restaurants. Each restaurant includes a link to the menus, locations and contact information. We update our local restaurant lists as we discover fun atmospheres and ono dining worthy of your time.
The Aloha Spirit
Hawaii’s unique charm comes from the Aloha Spirit. Aloha means the spirit of love, and is commonly used as hello and goodbye. However, Aloha also means compassion, kindness and giving. But the Aloha Spirit encompasses more than Aloha as it embodies Hawaiian values:
- malama: to care for
- ‘ohana: family
- ho’okipa: hospitality
- ‘olu’olu: graciousness
- kokua: helpfulness
- lokahi: unity and harmony
- kupono: honesty and fairness
In summary, the Hawaiian value provide the foundation for a respected and treasured culture.
Hawaii is more than the physical beauty of the land, sea and sky. Hawaii is a community with a long and fascinating history that continues to be felt in many ways. The people are happy and happy people are friendly people.
Discover more about Hawaii by visiting the Bishop Museum or the Polynesian Culture Center. Our Waikiki Bucket List offers more suggestions to help you discover Hawaii. The more you discover about Hawaii’s past, the more you understand modern-day Hawaii.
The past is still a vital part of the present in Hawaii. Enrich your experience of the culture by experiencing the people and the spirit of aloha during your visit. In doing so, you are helping to keep history alive. Explore the traditions of the past that are still prevalent in the culture of Waikiki and Oahu’s small towns.
Kapuna bless Kuhio Village Towers through traditional chant and ceremony. The towers memorialize the Hawaiian Prince Jonah Kūhiō Kalanianaʻole who was a prince of the Kingdom of Hawaii. A coalition of American and European businessmen overthrew the kingdom in 1893.
The early Hawaiians had no written language but they developed chants. As a result, chants recorded the genealogy of chiefs. Chants also are used during blessings and are a highly evolved verbal communication. Chanters remain an important member of Hawaii’s society. They preserve history and legend.
The Hawaiian Blessing is a traditional ceremony to bless new homes, canoes, businesses, babies, and food. The blessing calls upon great powers to assist in the safety, well being and success of the new creation. The blessing also cleans and clears the way of any conflict or negative experience that may have occurred in the past. The ceremony, performed by a spiritual leader, draws a community together to participate in honoring a new beginning.
We want you to have a wonderful stay with us in paradise and ask that you follow a few basic Guest Rules in addition to complying with the building’s House Rules.
- All guests and guest’s visitors must register with a valid photo id (all adult occupants in the unit) at check-in with your host or in the Real Estate management office. For after-hour arrivals / check-ins, prior arrangements must be made in advance of your arrival.
- Do not let anyone up the elevator within a secured building.
Be Courteous and Respectful
- While on property to include lobbies, elevators, hallways, lanais and in room, please keep noise volumes to a minimum. Loud music or TV playback is generally not allowed.
- Intoxicated or illegal behavior is never permitted.
- Do not allow shower or bath tub water to puddle water on the bathroom floor or you could cause a leak to a neighboring unit of which you will be responsible for the damages and costs to remedy the situation.
- Never hang items over the lanai walls, or allow any items to drip, drain or fall from a lanai (balcony).
- Do NOT bring beach SAND into the rooms or the tub / shower because sand will clog the drains. Use the beach showers to rise all sand to leave it at the beach.
- Report any leaks, damages, issues or concerns right away to your host or to the office for assistance.
- We provide a few complementary supplies such as bath soap, dish soap & sponge, trash liners, toilet paper and paper towels at check-in and recommend guests bring or purchase their own products such as shampoo, conditioner, lotion, make-up removers, sanitizers and wipes. Guest rooms with coffee stations include complimentary coffee and tea along with condiments and a Hawaiian sweet treat! However, supplies are not restocked with the intent of supplying your needs for the duration of your stay. Bring or purchase extra supplies for extended stays.
Air Conditioner Use
- If your unit has a window A/C unit, please do not running the A/C all day and all night. Turn off the A/C while you are out during the day. On the hottest days with abnormal humidity, window A/C units may be over-worked and produce more condensation than normal. Please check if the container underneath the A/C if it fills up and spills water on the lanai. Empty A/C containers into the tub. Water dripping is unpleasant for others below, causes a trip hazard and could result in building violations and fines.
- For buildings with Trash chutes, they are generally located on each floor (Kuhio Village next to the elevator shaft in a closet marked REFUSE). Please tie all bags before using the trash chute and if you have items too large, please break down cardboard boxes flat before putting it in the large trash bins usually in the basement level.
- Do not flush anything down the toilet expect a SMALL amount of toilet tissue or you will cause a clog or flood. NO FLUSHABLES, BABY WIPES, PAPER TOWELS, ETC. If you cause a clog, you will be responsible for the cost to remediate the situation.
- Parking is at your own risk whether be in a garage or on the street. Most public parking garages has a unmanned ticket station, be sure to re-pay and place your parking ticket on the front dashboard so that it is clearly visible / readable from the outside (unless otherwise posted). Any car parked with an expired ticket or without a ticket may be towed at your expense (usually over $200). Do NOT leave any valuables in the car unattended. We do not manage the parking lots. Parking management and tow company phone numbers are posted.
- Check-out time is no later than 11:00 AM. If you fail to check out on time, you could be charged a fee. If you have a late flight on your check-out date, please check with us in advance to see if you can extend for a fee and we will schedule the cleaning for the following morning for those guests on the red eye flights.
- Upon check-out, please return keys as instructed. Unaccounted key sets incur a $150 charge per set.
Considered as part of our reservation agreement with you, the Guest Rules and the building’s House Rules promote guests’ safety and enjoyment. Contact us if you have any questions about the Guest Rules.
For the island of Oahu, you will arrive at the Honolulu International Airport and have several options of transportation between the airport and Waikiki. Taxi’s or ride share services will be the quickest and there are also shuttle services in addition to car rental companies. Most guests do not use a car for the duration of their stay so we recommend only renting a car for the days you intend to tour the island. You could also chose a chartered tour and avoid driving all together. Let’s explore some of your options.
– First and most readily accessible are cab and taxi services. Average travel time from airport is approximately 30 minutes to the Aston Waikiki Beach Hotel. Fare is approximately $30-45 one-way. Pick-up on lower lever/baggage claim level. They are usually queued so waiting is minimal.
– Next are shuttle services. Roberts Hawaii is a popular shuttle bus company here on Oahu. The rate is $16.00 USD/one way and $30.00 USD/round trip. Pay on board. Pick-up on lower lever baggage claim level. They run about every 15-30 minutes. Roberts Hawaii: (808) 523-7750 website: www.robertshawaii.com
– Alternatively, you can use the city bus. Average travel time is approximately 1-1 ½ hours. Fares are $2.75 one-way. (Exact Cash) Carry-on items are limited and large luggage is not allowed. Pay on board. Pick-up on upper lever/ticketing level. Services run about every 15 minutes. Bus routes 19 & 20 will bring you directly into Waikiki to within a block of the office. Make sure when boarding to verify with the driver that the bus is headed to Waikiki. You will depart the bus upon arrival at Kuhio Ave and Liliuokalani Ave in Waikiki. The Bus: (808) 848-5555 www.thebus.org
– A fourth option is a rental car. However a rental car is not needed for a duration of your stay. We recommend renting a car from Waikiki for the dates you plan to tour the island. Free street parking is hard to obtain however paid public parking garages are available throughout Waikiki.
Uber or Lyft
– Lastly, Rideshare services are available with a broad ranges of service fees ranging from $36 to $77.
The office address is 2463 Kuhio Avenue, Honolulu, Hawaii 96815. The rates quotes are as of July 2018 and may change without notice.
Oahu Vacationers Useful Links
You have options while visiting and below are some useful links for Oahu vacationers.
- Current Weather Conditions
- Honolulu International Airport
- Honolulu Bus Information
- Public Announcements & Events
- Shuttles & Tours
- Oahu Hiking Trails
- National Park Services
The area code for the state of Hawaii is (808).
Oahu Visitors Bureau: (808) 524-0722
Marriage License and Civil Unions: (808) 586-4545
Honolulu International Airport Visitor Information: (808) 836-6413
Camping Permits: (808) 523-4525 (county), (808) 587-0300 (state)
The City uses a multi-layered system to notify and alert residents and non-residents of disaster or emergencies. Ways the city will notify, alert, or warn you of disasters:
- Radio and television broadcasts
- Emergency Alert System (EAS) notification to radio/television/NOAA weather radio
- Outdoor siren warning system
- Responders using public address systems
- Nixle notification services
- HNL Info
Nixle keeps you up-to-date with relevant information from local public safety departments and schools.
TEXT 96815 TO 888777 TO OPT-IN TO RECEIVE NIXLE ALERTS FOR HONOLULU AND WAIKIKI