Important Facts About Living in Hawaii

hawaii island

I recently had a friend move from California to Hawaii with me. He didn’t stay long and has since returned to California where he now owns a carpet cleaning company in Norwalk.

You see, my friend thought Hawaii would be all surfing and fun in the sun. But there are some parts about living in Hawaii that aren’t so wonderful and sometimes are enough to have people like my friend move back to the mainland.

Overall, living in Hawaii is wonderful. I really do recommend it to everyone, but to be fair, there are a few important facts about living in Hawaii you should know before you decide to move here:


It’s not cheap to live in Hawaii. The cost of owning land or renting space is very expensive compared to many of the states in the mainland. You will need to be prepared for these costs prior to moving here.


There are several inconveniences living on the islands. One inconvenience is traffic where most islanders will commute and sit in traffic for 1-2 hours every single day.

Another inconvenience is purchasing common and hard-to-find goods. Most of the items at stores are produced on the mainland and need to be shipped or flown to the island. This means when a brand of food or an item you love is not available at a store it can be days or weeks until it will be in stock again and of course, it will cost much more in Hawaii due to the shipping costs.


I won’t go into too much detail but there are bugs everywhere in Hawaii. Big bugs. If you simply cannot live with or around bugs you should not live in Hawaii.


If you don’t feel safe about living somewhere where extreme weather patterns occur than you will not want to live in Hawaii because we endure flash floods, tsunamis and more here. Nature plays a role in everyday life in Hawaii and sometimes it is dangerous, including the occasional shark attack.


Odds are if you decide to move to Hawaii not all of your friends or family will follow. If your family and friends live on the East Coast this could mean upwards of 10 hours of travel time or 20 hours there and back.

That level of travel is both exhausting and expensive. It will also be difficult to convince friends and family to visit you too often based on those truths.

Like I said above, I love living in Hawaii and I think the pros far outweigh the cons but like with all things in life, Hawaii is not perfect, there are bugs, expensive living costs, traffic and dangerous weather to deal with on the islands.

I hope this helps you decide whether living in Hawaii is the right choice for you and your family!

Rent Your Hawaiian Beach Home

oahu home

Locals of Oahu are well aware of the massive influx of tourists on the island every week. Sometimes it feels as though the island is 50/50 between tourists from the mainland and across the globe and local residents and tribes.

Instead of being frustrated by tourism in Oahu, use it to your advantage. Hotels are very expensive in Oahu and are booked out months in advance. That leaves many tourists scratching their head as to where to stay during their vacation in Oahu. So, why not rent your Oahu beach home?

There is a good chance you have friends and family on the mainland you will want to visit for holidays or throughout the year. Or perhaps you want to visit other islands nearby? Either way, you can rent your beach home during the weeks you plan to be on vacation or even traveling for business purposes.

Prepare Your Home for Rent

You won’t have to do much to prepare your beach home for rent. You do not need to stock the refrigerator with food or drink. Guests are expected to provide their meals for themselves.

You simply need to clean the home before you rent it and ensure all utilities as well as internet are in working order before leaving.

It’s also nice to provide bath towels for guests to use as that is something many will forget to pack with them.

To clean the home, you should dust and vacuum before the arrival of the guests. This would also be a good time to consider deep carpet cleaning.

Scrub the kitchen floors and deep clean the refrigerator and throw out all of your food and leftovers. You should also deep clean the oven to remove any grime from the inside of it.

In the bathroom, scrub the shower tile and the bathtub and wipe down the toilet and the sinks.

In the bedrooms, you should have the beds made before the guests arrive with fresh bedding just for them.

Try to remove as many of your personal items as possible. This includes photographs or heirlooms and of course anything of value to you.

You should require a security down payment in case any damage occurs in your home or in case any of your property goes missing during the time the guests are in your home.

If you present the beach home nice enough you might convince the guests to visit again and stay in your home again or you could receive referrals from them for their friends and family.

You will find that you can earn over $2,000 in a week from guests renting out your beach home in Oahu during vacation. This is enough to pay for your own travel costs or to save the money for other expenses throughout the year.

Locals in Oahu should all consider renting their homes to tourists of the island, especially during peak travel times during the year. Locals will come to find it is a very easy way to supplement their income and get a break from tourists when the island is overrun with them.

Hawaiian Words to Learn

hawaiian flower

For the most part, English is very common throughout Hawaii and the Polynesian Islands. After all, Hawaii is one of the 50 United States of America.

But there are some locals on the island that still use Hawaiian words and terms. This means you will want to learn these Hawaiian words before you travel to the islands.

9 Hawaiian Words to Learn

1) Aloha

You will hear residents of the islands say “aloha” as both a greeting and as a farewell. That’s right, “aloha” is both “hello” and “goodbye” in Hawaii. It can be confusing but in context you will understand whether it is a greeting or farewell.

2) Mahalo

“Mahalo” is the Hawaiian word for “thank you”. You will use this word at your hotel and at almost every tourist attraction or restaurant you visit during your time on the Polynesian Islands. Assuming you are polite of course 🙂

3) Kokua

If you need help or assistance with something, you need “kokua”. You might ask for directions or something similar and use the term to one of the locals. Be sure to say “mahalo” after someone provides kokua for you!

4) Pono

“Pono” is the Hawaiian version of “cool” or “awesome”. The younger residents of the islands are more likely to use this term than the older ones. You might also hear this term often from local surfers on Oahu.

5) Ohana

The term “ohana” means family in Hawaii. Family is very important in the Polynesian Islands and you will often hear locals in Hawaii discussing their ohana with great love and pride.

6) Ono

“Ono” means delicious or yummy. You will probably have some ono food at one or two local restaurants in Hawaii during your vacation to the islands.

7) Keiki

The term “keiki” is used for children. You will see many keiki on the islands during your time in Hawaii.

8) Pau

“Pau” means done or finished. If a server at a restaurant wants to take your empty plates or glassware you can say “pau” and he or she will know it is OK to take them from you.

9) Lei

The lei is the traditional Hawaii neckwear you often receive at the airport after your plane lands on the island.

Tourism in Oahu

pearl harbor

There are some tourist activities necessary for any vacation in Polynesia and the Hawaiian Islands. Tourists must try out local food and experience the culture of the Polynesians and experience a luau. I also recommend learning to surf (or at least trying to J).

Then, of course, there are the hundreds of beautiful beaches to enjoy and explore. This is true of all of the Hawaiian Islands.

However, this post focuses on some of the amazing tourist attractions in Oahu Island. Oahu is a Hawaiian Island and home to Honolulu.

No trip to Hawaii is complete without a stop at this historic island in the Pacific Ocean and there are many attractions for visitors to see:

#1. Pearl Harbor

History buffs must visit Pearl Harbor and the USS Arizona Memorial in Oahu. This site is one of the most-visited World War II memorials in the entire world. The location is the final resting place of over 1,000 American soldiers who died in the attack on Pearl Harbor.

There is a visitor center and offshore monument and fairy rides to the monument where visitors can pay their respects to the brave soldiers from that historic day.

#2. Waikiki Beach

Waikiki Beach is the most popular of all of the beaches in Hawaii and it is one of the most beautiful places on the entire Earth in my opinion. The sand and the ocean are breathtaking and the waves are some of the best for surfing in all of Hawaii. There are also several local shops and restaurants to enjoy along the coast.

#3. Sunset Beach

If you want to see how the top surfers do it, then Sunset Beach is the place to go. Do not surf these waves yourself if you are an amateur or just learning but watch the local surfers and professional visitors tackle some of the most amazing surfing waves in the world on Sunset Beach.

These are just three of the very best tourist attractions in Oahu but there is so much more to do on the island. The restaurants are delicious and the shops feature handmade craftsmanship for sale from local artists that live on the island.


Aloha! Welcome to Adventures in Polynesia …

This is my travel blog about my time spent living in Polynesia. I want to share some of the history of the area, tourist attractions, local culture and more! I hope you visit this blog often to hear about all of my adventures!