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2 weeks Hawaii on a budget

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20190108_175355.jpg This is basically a summary of our spontaneous trip to Hawaii. We wanted to figure out how difficult it could be to rent cabins, hotel rooms and cars on a flexible schedule. I hope this will help someone that is thinking of doing the same. Matter of fact a friend of mine had a few questions, Teresa this might give you a better idea.
Let's start with flights. If you are eligible to fly on Military flights and your destination is Hawaii, flying out of Travis AFB CA is one of your prime passenger terminals. Flights leave almost daily. On the other hand, if you want to return back to the mainland it can be more tricky. We discovered that flights pop up daily, but they usually already have people manifested on them, coming from Guam or Japan. These seats are already reserved for them, which means passengers originating from Hawaii will get whatever seats are still available. That is definitely something new we learned. Next time we will continue on to other destinations in order to get manifested all the way through. I hope that makes sense.
Allow plenty of time, I would plan a week for a cushion to catch a flight back. Use the days you don't catch a hop just as another day on the beach. 20190110_140918.jpg This leads me to lodging...not always will there be a hotel room close by to crash in, but we learned that having a vehicle serves more than just as transportation. There is no need to book a room if you have to be at the terminal at 3 A.M., just lean back the chairs, climb in the sleeping back and catch some shuteye. That just saved you $135.
Hotel rates run around $135 per night on post, where the cheapest room in Waikiki could be $165, depending on the season.
We have stayed in a cabin on the beach for one week, costing us $105 per night. We didn't reserve or book it. We extended 3 times and each time were able to stay, which showed us that walking in is no problem. Even though it shows online as fully booked, we saw empty cabins on a daily basis. One bedroom cabins cost $105 and 2 bedroom cabins $135 per night. All have a fully equipped kitchens and sleeper sofas. My favorite place to stay is the Navy Lodge on Ford Island only 6 miles from Hickham Field. The hotel room with 2 queen sized beds, a little kitchenette, complimentary breakfast, 24 hour shop and pool with cabana cost us $102 per night. 20190111_173654.jpg 20190112_110515.jpg 20190112_110612.jpg
We discovered how to lower the cost on our car rental as well. If you have a credit card you might be insured depending on your credit card. That alone will knock down the price. If you book online and find the cheapest deal, you can show that to the people at Enterprise and they will price match, and if you sign up for their rewards program, that will knock off an additional fee. Overall we were able to zoom around in our Jeep Wrangler for $44 per day and used it occasionally as our hotel room. 20190108_163328.jpg 20190108_163338.jpg
We bought our groceries at the commissary, because all our rentals had kitchens and I prefer cooking our meals , it is healthier and more affordable.
If we did feel the urge to eat while we were exploring, a side of French fries and an iced coffee or a fresh pineapple smoothie would do the trick.
We discovered that you can take showers at the gym, use the restroom on the beach or the playground and wash clothes at lodging for free. We did all that during the time we slept under the stars. It is possible!
Overall we spent about $1000 per week and that included, food, car rental, hotel costs and the flight .
That is not a bad price for 3 travelers. I hope this information is useful and gives you a better insight of visiting Hawaii on a dime.
Most of all have fun, make fantastic memories and don't stress. Aloha!

Posted by Meike Carter 05:39

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