Travel Tips, Oahu
The free visitor guide and coupons are an excellent way to familiarize yourself with the area as well as plan a particular event. Many of the guides have discounted coupons which can be very valuable on things like meals and activities.
It's easy to find these guides. When you're arriving at the airport you'll see racks and racks of these guides and maps. If you have a few minutes, take a quick look through them to see if there is anything of interest. Grab a few cause you never know if you'll find a valuable coupon which can save you $$ on an activity or meal.
If you don't have time, don't worry, many hotels and restaurants carry a smaller selection.
Hawaii does not observe daylight savings time that occurs in most of the states of the US. WHen Daylight savings time occurs HAwaii is not affected. Hawaii is 3 hours behind the West Coast of the US during daylight savings time so adjust accordingly. I almost forgot this small detail on my last trip to the islands.
When you fly into Hawaii the flight attendant hands out Agriculture Declaration Forms. Since Hawaii is an unique environment agriculturally; plants and animals that enter the areas are strictly controlled.
Any fruit, vegetables, flowers, plants and animals must be declared and submitted for inspection. The best bet here is to not bring any food or animals into the area.
A disturbing thing about Oahu is the large amount of homeless people. They're asleep on the streets and beaches as well as wandering about. Considering how much these islands make in tourism, it is quite sad to see such abject poverty in such a beautiful setting. But I guess if one is to be homeless, Hawaii is ideal with it's weather and beaches for sleeping...it's just a shame.
In Hawai'i, you don't say "flip flops". They are called "slippahs". And they are the footwear of choice for islanders. If you don't have any slippahs, you can get them at a lot of places all over the island.
You make an ass out of "U" and "mption".
The population of Hawai'i is very diverse, with people from all over Asia, or those with Asian heritage, making it their home. That being said, not every person who looks Asian will be Japanese..or Chinese. So don?t go speaking Japanese to someone because you don't know the difference between people groups. It is insulting and extremely offensive. Feel free to ask what someone's ethnicities are, but do not ask if they are something specific unless you are 100% sure. Watching someone insult a person like this is embarrassing, ridiculous, and funny (funny as in I am laughing at you - not with you).
No one really says north, south, east, or west in Hawai'i much. You use makai, mauka, Ewa, and Diamond Head.
Makai (muh-KIGH) - oceanside
Mauka (MAO-kuh) - mountainside
Ewa (EH-vuh) - to the west towards Ewa
Diamond Head - to the east towards Diamond Head
So if someone says that a particular place is on the makai side of a particular street, you'll know it is on the side of the street closest to the ocean.
I found that asking the locals as to where do they eat, you will find a restaurant off the beaten tourist path and the prices will be as much as HALF! These places are not classy nor may have much of any motiff, but if food is all you want and to save some ont he budget,...ask the locals
Yes, Hawaiian residents can show their drivers' license and get discounts. Don't be an ugly tourist and complain about this. Hawaii is an expensive place to live and you'd want the discount if you lived there, too.
Any one who has visited the islands, may have noticed we have absolutely NO BILLBOARDS here on any of our islands! You may also have noticed the lack of constant horn blasting ... makes for quieter and more relaxed driving! The locals have a famous "wave of the hand" when you let them cut lanes or enter your lane during heavy traffic. Give up being a mean aggressive driver, and wave that hand NICELY when they cut you anyway! We just laugh it off ... btw, while horn blasting is not common here, I will blast my horn in a heartbeat if there is immediate danger!