Hawaiian hotel value is much more than only luxury and price.
For some travelers to Hawaii, price is no object. They want top service, a great location and luxurious rooms. Some search for Hawaiian hotel value. For others, it really is about the cheapest place they can find to sleep, or the absolute lowest price, even if it means a private rental or sitting through a time-share presentation. If you are in the price-is-no-object category, this post isn’t for you.
Many travelers search for good value lodging that doesn’t break the bank. A friend of mine used to say, “I don’t need a palace, but on vacation I’d like something that’s a little nicer than being at home.”
Over the years in the industry, I’ve discovered sometimes paying a bit more gets you a lot more.
Here are some examples. I call it discovering Hawaiian hotel value.
- Look for Hawaiian hotel value in “preferred programs” with various travel agencies. Or, sometimes check with credit card companies that have their own agencies. Such programs may include all sorts of free extras, from free breakfast, to hotel food, beverage or spa credits, to upgrades. And in Hawaii, many breakfasts are not just coffee and rolls or even a few hot choices. They are huge buffets with egg and omelette stations, international specialties like dim sum, smoked salmon, and so on. Enough food is served that breakfast-eaters probably won’t need lunch.
- What activities does a hotel have on site? For a family with children, hotels with water-park level pools might mean families can entertain everyone, including kids, all day for no extra charge. The Grand Wailea on Maui has had such a pool area for years, and the Wailea Beach Marriott at their family pool has two seriously high water slides, one that is partially in the dark.
- Location, location, location. This depends partly on what vacationers want to do. Whether it’s going to the beach or shopping, or trying different restaurants, having to get in a car or a shuttle every time you want to do it will not only take time but can cost money. In Maui, hotels right on Kaanapali Beach or in Wailea have access to beach paths that allow guests to walk between various properties. Some of them have free shuttles.
- What amenities are in the rooms? The Fairmont Kea Lani, an all suite hotel, has refrigerators AND microwaves. Not that you may want to actually cook, but they’re perfect for bringing home and reheating leftovers (a personal favorite, because I hate wasting food and love late night snacks, or pizza for breakfast), or keeping food and drinks cool.
- Great views, not necessarily from the room, but on property. Many of the more expensive properties in Hawaii have stunning locations. Admittedly, if the price is the same, everyone loves an ocean view. But the identical room at a deluxe property on the mountain or garden side can sometimes mean a savings of 50 percent from an ocean view. On the other hand, if families or couples are not going to be in the room that much, especially during daylight hours, it’s easy to enjoy the views from elsewhere on the grounds. Plus, with BYOB it can be a Hawaiian hotel value and an easy walk outside for an inexpensive sunset cocktail.
Of course, the Hawaiian hotel value of all these advantages with a more deluxe hotel will vary by what travelers personally want in a vacation. Before spending money and time looking for the cheapest deal, consider whether spending more up front might not only score a nicer room, but might turn out to be the best deal of all after all is said and done.
Janice Hough is a California-based travel agent a travel blogger and a part-time comedy writer. A frequent flier herself, she’s been doing battle with airlines, hotels, and other travel companies for over three decades. Besides writing for Consumer Traveler, Janice has a humor blog at Leftcoastsportsbabe.com (Warning, the political and sports humor therein does not represent the views of anyone but herself.)