Oahu Travel on a Budget 2011

This is a continuation of my Oahu Travel on a Budget post. I recently visited Oahu in December 2010 and found some new ways to visit Hawaii on a budget.

Vacation Packages:

The ultimate deals for Hawaii airfare and hotel packages can be found on Pleasant holidays. If you are on a real budget, the deals offered occasionally on Pleasant Holidays are the best. They have offered $550 3 night vacations for two people with airfare included from LAX or SFO.  The latest deals are posted on their Facebook page. Most of the deals are for last minute booking. http://www.facebook.com/PleasantHolidays

Vacation Rentals:

Booking airfare and hotel together offers the best deal for 1-2 people. If you have larger groups, booking a vacation rental may be a good option. I used VRBO on my last trip and had a good experience.  Some of the amenities in a vacation rental often include: a kitchen to cook your own meals (and save lots of $$), a parking spot, washer/dryer,  and larger living space. One thing to note is that many rentals require a cleaning fee between $65 – $110, so that’s something to consider. If you have a large group of family or friends, its a better deal to rent a condo/house than multiple hotel rooms.

Discount Airfare:

Hawaiian Airlines often has great deals on airfare to Hawaii. Their prices are competitive with the other airlines and they offer a complementary meal in their flights. The new planes on their LAX route are very nice with video screens on every seat and powered USB ports. Bring your USB charging cord for your devices on the flight from LAX to HNL if you have the newer Airbus plane. They can be identified with the 2-4-2 seating arrangement.

Best seafood under $10:

My favorite place is Nico’s Pier 38 http://www.nicospier38.com/ 
They offer fresh fish at affordable prices. Their famous dish is the furikaki pan seared ahi, which I recommend to try at least once.  The fried ahi belly is also excellent — giant pieces of fried ahi tuna topped with delicious tomato.

Cheap groceries:

The cost of groceries in Oahu are one of the highest in the nation. Fresh produce and dairy products are very expensive. Two places for finding cheap groceries in Oahu are WalMart and Don Quijote. Walmart doesn’t have much of a selection of food products, but their prices are the lowest. Don Quijote has a good selection of groceries and their prices are reasonable. You can often find Hawaiian poke in their seafood section for $6-$7 per pound. Costco also offers good prices on groceries, but the large portions are suited for longer trips 7 days+.

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