If there’s a place most similar to paradise, it has to be the Aloha State. Living in Hawaii is a lifelong dream of many people all around the world. It’s really no wonder why this tropical island has become a long-desired destination considering all its splendor, but being its resident is somewhat different than simply visiting as a tourist.
Is it realistic to move to Hawaii? No need to worry, because it certainly is. However, going all the way to an isolated group of Pacific islands and expecting regular life isn’t exactly how things work. And that’s why we’re here, to help you adjust more easily and walk you through unique Aloha State characteristics and things to expect once you’re there.
What’s It Like Living in Hawaii?
To move efficiently, understanding the place you’re going to is vital. When thinking about the Islands of Aloha, the first thoughts that come to mind are probably palm trees, vast sandy beaches, and a clear sky all year round. And still, there is so much more to it. Believe it or not, residing there isn’t all rainbows and butterflies, which is why it’s important to go through some of the pros and cons.
Pros and Cons of Living in Hawaii – Things You’ll Love and Some You Won’t
Since you are in one of the friendliest countries in the world, advantages are plenty, and we’ll start with them:
- Gorgeous scenery and fantastic weather,
- Slow-paced lifestyle and kind people,
- One of the healthiest states in the U.S.,
- Diverse culture,
- Foodie heaven,
- Low sales tax.
However, there are some disadvantages, too, that could make settling in a bit harder:
- Higher prices,
- Traffic congestion and lack of parking,
- Bugs, bugs, bugs!
There Are Some Troubles in Paradise
Although this might be the only place so often referred to as Paradise, you are probably wondering if there is something to be cautious about. What are the dangers of living in Hawaii?
Well, even paradise itself is not entirely perfect, so be careful about water. Or, to be more precise, too much water during rainy seasons. Save yourself a headache then and avoid outdoor activities such as hiking because you’ll face many streams and waterfalls formed by the rainfall. Also, a rule of thumb is to avoid the ocean during the winter months, when waves are usually too big and far too dangerous.
How Much Money Do You Need to Live Comfortably in Hawaii?
Much like international moving, relocating here comes with many challenges, but all of them are much simpler to handle if you’ve saved enough money before moving abroad. Of course, you’ll be spending different amounts depending on the place of residence, but let’s say that three to six months’ worth of expenses – whatever the city – is the figure that should give you enough time to adapt and start afresh stress-free.
Is It Expensive to Live in Hawaii?
When researching the Islands’ costs of living, you’re also researching its touristic potential, the main reason why everything is more pricey than you’re probably used to. Also, one of the reasons why things are so expensive is that most of them are imported, which increases the base price of the products. So, according to Numbeo, be ready to face higher groceries, gas, and utility bills than in most American cities. But we’ll not be mistaken if we say – that’s the price of paradise.
Dig Into the Local Job Market
That having a job is the fundamental element of a decent life is not exactly rocket science. It’s a well-known fact that applies no matter where you live. If your job search failed before relocating, there’s always Zippia to help you out, so you can relieve some of the relocation stress. Keep in mind that Hawaii is not that big of an area after all, so work opportunities are limited.
However, if you happen to work in the field of education, healthcare, construction, or tourism, you’re on the safe side. These are some of the most needed and best-paid jobs here. Also, forget about the dress code when working here; put your casual T-shirt on and think of the questions to ask the employer when the interview time comes.
Oahu Is Not the Only Place to Call Your New Home
Although it’s known as the “gathering place,” the capital of Honolulu is not the only city to replant your roots and make life simple again. However, it’s worth considering, because it’s popular for a reason. In a way, skipping Honolulu and Oahu as a whole would be like skipping NYC when on the East Coast.
Still, there are plenty of places convenient for newbies. It’s just a matter of research to figure them out. We know how challenging it can be when exploring an area for the first time, especially if relocating alone, so we listed some of our top picks to make it easier for you:
- Maunawili, Oahu
- Mililani Mauka, Oahu
- Kailua, Oahu
- Wailea, Maui
- Princeville, Kauai
- Kula, Maui
- Wailuku, Maui
What Are the Cheapest Places to Be? Finding the Right City or Town on Each Island
Honolulu and some of the places mentioned above are not so easily affordable, but there’s no need to despair. There are plenty of spots all over the islands which are not that pricey, so we’ve got you covered with some of the cheapest places to live in HI, as well:
- Wahiawa, Oahu
- Wailuku, Maui
- Kurtistown, Big Island
- Laie, Oahu
Wherever you choose to live, living overseas means you’re far away from home, people you love, and your support system. Remember to get in touch with your friends, even if you’ve just moved. There will be better times than this to miss them, so let them encourage you and help you choose the right fit for you.
To learn more about the Islands and pick the right island for yourself, watch the video below.
Take Some Time for House-Hunting
We know you’re probably already drained from all the relocation tasks, and you don’t want to hear about boxes and moving supplies any time soon, let alone scheduling all the moving services again. However, don’t give up because you’re almost there. You have packed to move, not to mention how long it took to find a reliable overseas moving company. Don’t let the task of searching for a new home spoil the pleasure of reaching your goal. Here it’s important to remind you to have the documents needed with you and to look at Hawaiian tenant rights and regulations. And be ready to deal with different house prices, with an average rent of $2,000.
Do Not Go to a Tropical Paradise Without a Car
It’s quite known that tropical islands are not really bike-friendly, and you certainly wouldn’t let your day depend on tourist shuttles, would you? There are plenty of reliable solutions for successful overseas car shipping so you can get your vehicle in no time. After all, it’s not just about getting around more easily but wasting your time on buses and money on things you could easily cover on your own.
The State’s Pet Regulations Are Strict
Relocating with pets to this state can be pretty complicated. If you’re relocating with a dog, want to move with a cat, or have another type of pet you adore and can’t leave behind, contact the state’s Department of Agriculture for information on pet regulations. Nobody can say they’re not adorable. However, specific procedures are to be followed, such as rabies antibody testing and the waiting period after it, sometimes for a whole month. Try to take this one seriously and put it on your relocation checklist if you don’t want to see your treasured furry friend quarantined for 120 days.
Adjusting to the Aloha State of Mind
This move is not just about island life; wherever you go, a few blocks away or to another city, the effects of change are inevitable. Sure, adjusting to a new country with a culture quite different from yours is hard, but even the culture of HI can have that effect. Even the regular stuff in the state will amaze you. And, of course, don’t just wait to settle in. Do something about it!
Aloha Doesn’t Really Mean Hello
When you choose a location with a native language that is not the same as your own, breaking the language barrier is a necessity. Even though English is also the official language of the islands, learning a few basic phrases in Hawaiian won’t hurt.
There are countless tips for learning a new language. However, our best recommendation is to be brave and put yourself out there. Immersion will not only improve your language skills but will also help you feel like a member of the community. Also, if you’d like to understand the real meaning behind “aloha”, it’s time to get out to the beach and make some new connections.
Every Day Is Friday When You’re a Local
Sometimes, it’s necessary to go that far to understand that life can still be simple. One of our theories is that it’s where the famous moniker came from – Paradise – because no matter where you are, beauty and peace will find you. It comes as no surprise that this is one of the happiest and healthiest states in the U.S. when all Hawaiian residents live less-stressful and much longer lives.
If there’s anything Paradise will teach you once you’re finally there, it’s how to enjoy your day slowly. Even though you go to work – everybody does – you’ll have to embrace after-work activities, as well. Living off the grid in Hawaii and the peace of mind you’ll find there will also teach you not to be so tense about everything, but to look forward to all the things a day brings.
When You Don’t Know How to Surf, It’s Like You Don’t Speak the Language
The ocean is a big part of Hawaiians’ reality. When you live overseas, that’s simply how things work. The tourist office is probably across the beach, if not on the beach itself. Visitors go there for a break, stare at the ocean to relax, or simply hang out there when they have nothing else to do.
But for thousands of years, Hawaiians have also been bonding with the ocean in their own special way – by riding the waves. It’s a big part of their culture that has been passed down through generations. Deciding to live here and not learning how to surf is like openly refusing to get in touch with the island spirit. So get on that surfboard and start learning.
Embracing the Experience Is the Reason Many Move to the Aloha State
You moved to one of the most exotic states, but don’t you worry – you will only need an open mind to embrace the journey, no matter how unfamiliar it may seem at times. Residing here will constantly test your abilities to change and learn. Sure, umbrella drinks at sunsets are one of the goals, especially after a workday, but you are here to enjoy the whole ride. Keep that in mind.