Re-scheduling trip to Hawai'i due to COVID - best time to rebook?
August 26, 2021 11:56 PM   Subscribe

As a respectful visitor to Hawai'i, I'm rebooking my trip that was scheduled for next week. I have one shot to get my timing right. Can you help me figure out the best COVID timing in combination with minimizing my impact on Hawaiian residents?

It's important to me to visit Hawai'i in the most respectful way possible. My main reason for visiting is to hit a 50-states goal.

Given the announcement this week about non-essential travel to Hawai'i, I want to postpone this trip.

Worth knowing:
-I live in a beachy tourist destination, so I understand monsoon season and I won't be wildly upset if I can't laze around the beach due to weather
-Molokai is my main destination but I will be spending some time in Maui. I'm trying to minimize my impact on Maui in particular
-I will likely have my booster by October; I'm moderately risk averse (I'll still hop on a plan for five hours but I won't dine indoors once I get there)
-My preference is to pick a time when there's limited need for occupancy restrictions in restaurants, closures of parks and beaches, etc.

I'm really more confused by the COVID aspect. No one's got a crystal ball and a lot of our local public health folks blew the call on the Delta variant. I get that there are no guarantees.

In terms of tourism, I'm trying to avoid being a burden who doesn't engage respectfully with the community.

I mapped out November or early December 2021 or February or March 2022 as potential dates to rebook. Weather-wise it's whatever, but COVID-wise and polite tourism-wise I'd appreciate data or educated guesses.

When should I re-book?
posted by librarylis to Travel & Transportation around Hawaii (7 answers total)
My main reason for visiting is to hit a 50-states goal.

Since you don’t have a timely need, how far ahead can you and are you willing to book? How about next summer? Two years from now?
posted by bluedaisy at 1:38 AM on August 27, 2021 [17 favorites]

I don't think anyone can know how long covid and its aftereffects will reign. I would make a plan (cost, savings, where to stay, what to see) without booking a thing. Unless all you book is easily refundable. And at least two years in the future.
posted by tiny frying pan at 5:38 AM on August 27, 2021 [1 favorite]

I would just plan for March. You might have to push it again.
posted by bbqturtle at 6:30 AM on August 27, 2021 [1 favorite]

Nobody knows when would be less awful to do anything and my impression is that Hawaii has been having its own issues all pandemic. You can't really make plans in advance any more because of variants. I committed to something in mid July that was now life risking by August. Thanks, Delta!
So literally nobody knows what to tell you when it may be less bad. Fauci himself probably couldn't now.

I do not plan on going back unless the pandemic drastically dies down or sorta ends. I don't want to be another asshole tourist making it worse for Hawaii. I wouldn't book anything if I were you and would go on what tiny frying pan says. Could be years before it'll be less bad to go.
posted by jenfullmoon at 7:06 AM on August 27, 2021 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Since you don’t have a timely need, how far ahead can you and are you willing to book?

That is a great question! I have to rebook existing flights (one to Maui, one to Molokai) and hotels (Maui, Molokai) or else I'd let it be a lot more theoretical. They're willing to do the 11 months ahead thing but not any further than that. So next summer would be possible - and I begrudgingly hear y'all that 2021 is likely right out.
posted by librarylis at 8:09 AM on August 27, 2021 [3 favorites]

Historically the periods between mid-October to mid-November, then mid-January to end of February have been less busy for the tourist industry. That is when I used to go to visit family. However those times overlap with susceptibility to winter illness season. It's a tough call. You don't want to just "touch base on the island" to accomplish your 50-state goal, and if you go during the pandemic it may kind of suck. But being in Hawaii is great anyway -- the warm air, the flowers, birds, ocean, the people and culture. Get vaccinated, wear a mask, what else can you do? Everything in life involves risk.
posted by olopua at 8:32 AM on August 27, 2021 [1 favorite]

Is banking the currently-planned trip as travel credits an option? If not, as re-book far out as you can.
posted by Iris Gambol at 12:51 PM on August 27, 2021 [1 favorite]

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