Hawaii has every type of lodging you can think of; Accommodations all the way from ultra luxurious resort hotels to skidrow fleabags. My first tip about this is:
If you’re considering going to Hawaii on a package plan, check out all that is offered, especially the lodging that is included in the package.
Why do I emphasize this point? Because I’ve had soooo many people on my tours that voiced disappointment, or alluded to downright deception about their accommodations.
Having said that, you need to know that the general level of cleanliness, courtesy, and service in Hawaii lodgings is excellent.
The problem, most of the time, seems to be in the traveler’s perception of what he’s paying for, and what he’s actually paying for (excuse the gender thing). Here’s a property ad from an actual web description … I’ve changed a few words, but haven’t downgraded or embellished the property.
“Hotel xyz is an older moderate hotel with expansive grounds and over eleven hundred palm trees. This low-rise property is located across the street from the beach in the Kihei area on Maui. It features a pool, 2 tennis courts, central laundry facilities, activity desk, complimentary coffee in the lobby, BBQ and volleyball.
The hotel rooms (which range from garden view to oceanfront) all have air conditioning, refrigerator, shower & bathtub and color cable TV.“
Now, this is a very forthright description of the property. I’ve stayed there several times, and have recommended it to others. So what’s the problem?
The problem lies in several terms. “Older” is not well defined. This property is, without a doubt, the oldest resort on Maui that’s still standing.
And then there’s “across the street from the beach.” The beach consists of a few small pockets of sand, which are blocked off by small oceanfront units that actually belong to Unit xyz. The main body of this property sits back about 75 to 100 yards off the road…”across the street.” Again, “oceanfront” is a fair distance from the ocean and is blocked by many of the “eleven hundred palm trees.”
Would I stay there again? Sure I would. But I know what I’m getting. I have no allusions. I know it’s a very old Hawaiiana style resort that’s seen better days. But it’s very clean and friendly.
New visitors wouldn’t know that from just reading the description. They also wouldn’t know there isn’t any restaurant located on the property (McDonalds is about 1 1/2 miles down the road), or that a real beach is a pretty good hike in either direction. But the ad should have mentioned there is a great windsurfing beach a short distance away, and because Hotel xyz is far back from the road, it’s pretty quiet.
So, here’s my point again. Don’t just take an agent’s, website’s, or travel brochure’s word for what your “home away from home” is going to be like. Check it out! Call ’em up! Ask questions! It really doesn’t take much effort, and I know you’ll be a lot happier knowing your perceptions are a lot closer to the real thing.
New Features Alert: News Flash, and Fun Facts About Hawaii
News Flash: Well now, I sorta promised that I’d let up on the air travel news, but later realized that I’d overlooked an important carrier, Alaska Airlines. And here’s the flash: Alaska Airlines will start a new daily round-trip flight between Seattle and Maui that begins July 17. Of course, Alaska already flies nonstop to Kauai and Honolulu.
Fun Facts about Hawaii: Below is the Hawaii State Song.
Written by King David Kalakaua
Hawaii ponoi Nana i kou, moi
Kalani Alii, ke Alii.
Makua lani e Kamehameha e
Na kaua e pale Me ka i he.
Hawaii’s own true sons, be loyal to your chief
Your country’s liege and lord, the Alii. [royalty]
Father above us all, Kamehameha, [first Chief to unify Hawaii]
Who guarded in the war with his ihe, [spear]
Aloha, a hui hou (until we meet again)