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Bargains and Budgets on Maui

Whether you’re visiting or planning to move to Hawaii, island life can be expensive. Not to worry, there are discount activities and inexpensive food and travel deals to be had. If you venture beyond the hundred dollar luaus and fancy restaurant dinners, you can find activities that won’t devastate your daily spend. With a little innovation, Maui can be surprisingly affordable. Try these budget friendly ideas that to make the most of your Valley Isle experience.

Timing is Everything

Do you have flexibility with your vacation calendar? If so, consider that summer is high season on Maui. That means that the island is flush with travelers. Vacancy for accommodations and tours is low and prices are high. The same is true with the weeks surrounding Christmas and spring break. Visiting during the slower months of late September, October and early November can increase the likelihood of finding a deal, and more abundant space at resorts and tours. The weather is also very pleasant during the fall months.

Bargain Hunting for Maui-Made Products?

The Kahului Swap Meet is held at the University of Hawaii has an admission fee of only fifty cents and is open from 7am-1pm every Saturday. Every week hundreds of vendors arrive with their locally made goods such as handmade soaps, arts and crafts, and a variety of local produce. You are sure to find something for everyone. Maui also has various smaller farmers markets all over the island on different days of the week, to find of the beaten path markets you can refer to the local newspaper Maui Time.

Beating the Heat and Finding Deals Upcountry

kula lavender farmsSpending a day in upcountry Maui is the perfect unexpected escape from the tropical heat. Drive through eucalyptus groves and stroll through fields of lavender at Alii Kula Lavender Farm, all while enjoying bicoastal views of the north and south Maui shores. Upcountry attractions also include  the Tedeschi winery, Ocean Vodka, and a goat dairy farm where you can feed the goats and eat delicious cheeses.

Food Trucks

Food Trucks are the ultimate budget friendly food option and they are all over Maui! Our food truck scene features cuisines to please all foodies visiting the island, varying from gourmet grilled cheese, shrimp tacos, wood fired pizza and more! If you have a truck in mind but need help getting there, check out roaminghunger.com and search for food-trucks in Maui, Hawaii. They will provide an interactive map that lets you know exactly where to find your next meal.

Asking for a Discount When Making Reservations

If there’s an activity beyond your budget that you’re eager to try, call the tour or activity provider and ask about deals and discounts. Most vendors will have a last-minute deal or deep discount on a certain date that will put you in the action at a fraction of the cost. There are lots of ways to request a discount for your Rappel Maui tour. Call, email, chat online or check the Deals and Specials page to find out if there’s an active promotion or last minute discount available.

Five Apps You Should Download Before You Land on Maui

It doesn’t matter if you’ve been to Maui multiple times or it’s your first time visiting, there are always a variety of things to do on Maui. And there’s always something to learn about this magical island.

Too Many Things To Do on Maui?

Some visitors find themselves with too many options. They may become so overwhelmed that they forego exploring the wonders of the island for the comfort of the resort. And that’s OK too—Maui has some spectacular and luxurious accommodations. But if you are a wanderer with a “bucket” or “must-do” list, here’s a short list of helpful apps to download to your iPhone or Android that will help you to have a safe and enjoyable stay, wherever you decide to roam.

Where Service is Unreliable

Cell phone coverage is unreliable in more remote areas.  Some infamous dead zones include:

  • Themap of Maui cell phone coverage Road to Hana after about mile marker 7 (Twin Falls Farm Stand).
  • The crater road heading toward the summit of Mount Haleakala.
  • On Makena Road at Big Beach and southward.
  • The upper Piilani Highway between Kaupo and Hana. (See map.)

Plan accordingly, both with your fuel and your plans. Pro tip: Put your phone in airplane mode when driving long distances without a signal to save your battery.

Cell Phone Usage Laws in Hawaii

In Hawaii, it’s illegal to use a handheld mobile electronic device while operating a vehicle. The restriction applies to talking on the phone, texting, and all other uses of an electronic device. So please hand your device to a passenger to use any of these apps while you’re on your way to doing some of the cool things to do on Maui.

Planning Your Things to Do on Maui? The Apps Are Where It’s At

  1. Hawaiian Words – Translation and Dictionary
    Most people are familiar with the words “aloha” and “mahalo”, but most of the Hawaiian language is intimidating to anyone new to it. If you are traveling and interested in the native culture, this free translation app could be perfect for you. Try out some of the words and phrases you learn while you’re at dinner or a luau.
  2. Magic Seaweed Surf Forecast and/or Surfline
    You don’t have to be a professional surfer use this app to your advantage. It’s handy if you are interested in any water or beach related activities like standup paddleboard, snorkeling, kayaking or swimming. Giving you up-to-date weather reports, including surf and wind conditions, to ensure that your beach day doesn’t get postponed because of unsafe water conditions or irritating sandblasting. Rainy day? No rain, no rainbows. There are lots of great things to do on Maui that are not sunshine dependent. (Bonus: There usually is at least one sunny part of the island on any given day.)
  3. What3Words
    If you know you’re going for a walk in the woods or an unfamiliar area, What3Words can be your lifeline if you get lost. It’s brilliant: the makers of the app divided the whole world into 3m squares, and assigned each square a word. By telling someone the three words you are at, you can share your exact location. Of course, you can’t use the app if you don’t have your phone, so keep your device with you on hikes and walks, using a sealed plastic bag or container to keep it dry in case of rain.
  4. GyPSy Guide
    Maui is a relatively easy place to drive but it does help to have an app that organizes the most popular day trips into sub categories for efficiency. GyPSy Guide is designed to allow you to create your own Maui adventure and has divided the island into 5 main areas: Haleakala, South Maui, West Maui, Hana Highway, and Iao Valley; all five are included in one app.
  1. Rider
    Maui is not known for their superior public transportation services, so you may feel like the only way to get around is to rent a car, but you might find this to be a game-changer. Traveling via bus can be frustrating since 95% of the bus stops don’t tell you when the next bus will be coming or where the bus is going. The Rider app will help you find the nearest bus stop and not only tell you where the bus is going, but will also give you real-time location tracking so you know the exact arrival time. Saving money on a rental car means more poke on your plate, and more time with your toes in the sand.

Some Reminders on What to Do on Maui–And What Not to Do

Don’t drink and drive, turn your back on the ocean, or hold your phone while driving.

Do heed posted warnings, stay on marked trails, and most of all, take in the beauty whenever it’s safe to do so. And we hope you’ll consider spending a day with us in the rainforest. No apps necessary!

What You Don’t See in the Rainforest

With some of the severe offshore weather the Hawaiian Islands experienced while Hurricane Lane was in the vicinity, many beach-goers are reporting frequent encounters with the Portuguese man-o-war (Physalia physalis). Like many exotic sea creatures, the man-o-war isn’t just beautiful, it’s harmful. Its long tentacles dangle down into the water, while its head bobs along the top of the water. The translucent wing on its head acts like a sail. Because it can’t actively swim or direct itself, the sail is the man-o-war’s only means of locomotion.

When the tentacles make contact with whatever is unlucky enough to be near them, they deliver a very painful, venomous sting. How painful and harmful the sting is depends on the size of the man-o-war, how many tentacles made contact, and how sensitive the victim is.

You won’t just see these creatures in the water. The winds will also blow them into the beach break, and eventually they end up littering the sandy beaches, where unsuspecting feet and toes step on them. Even after a man-o-war has died, their tentacles remain venomous, so be wary of these blue devils, especially after off shore storms or strong winds that blow man-o-war toward the beaches.

That’s the bad news. The good news is that it’s impossible to encounter a man-0-war or stinging jellyfish or any meddlesome, venomous sea creature on a Rappel Maui tour. There’s also no need to worry about shark bites, rip currents, wana (sea urchins) quills, or coral scrapes, either. You may see Tahitian prawns, those little crawdad-looking crustaceans in the fresh water ponds, but they move like lightning when threatened by curious hands.  Here’s more about what makes a Rappel Maui tour safe.  The rainforest also poses no threat from land wildlife such as bears, wildcats, or snakes. But if you’re worried about mosquitoes, please ask your guide for the DEET-free spray they carry. (Please do not apply products containing DEET before your tour, as it damages the gear that we use.)  If you notice you’ve been bitten ask for the Afterbite, an anti-itch treatment that can be applied to the skin.

While the ocean waters may be rough, murky or unfriendly after storms, the rainforest streams remain, as always, man-o-war free. We operate rain or shine, and our offices are open 7 am to 7 pm every day of the year. Please call to ask about conditions due to weather any time.