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As Hawaii Hotels Soar To Highest In USA, What Visitors Can Do

Hawaii hotels reported huge jumps in revenue, brought on by the highest average room rate in the country for the latest month reported (March 2022). Read further about what you can do and our tips.

Statewide, average room rates were $378, but some average rates were much higher. Even the statewide average was up 33% compared with both 2019 and 2021. Maybe you’ve noticed the same price jump on your recent Hawaii vacation. Many of your comments have spoken to this and we’ve seen it too.

The study prepared for Hawaii Tourism Authority represented 83% of all properties with twenty rooms or more. Vacation rentals aren’t a part of this report. We do not believe that ancillary costs, like resort fees, were part of this study.

Luxury Class Hawaii hotels rates up 52%.

If you want luxury, it’s going to cost more. Properties deemed luxury had an average daily rate of $887, which was up more than fifty percent compared with 2019. The demand for high end vacations is very strong, and the price increase reflects that visitors are willing to pay more, actually much more, post-Covid.

Hawaii hotels that are Midscale and Economy Class are the sweetspot for visitors.

Those properties still have a far more reasonable average daily rate, at $210 statewide. That’s up just 17% since 2019. Visitors can easily access a Hawaii vacation with less budgetary damage by choosing such hotels.

Maui hotels have the highest rates – some now average $1,000 per night.

Maui hotels overall exceeded all of the other islands with an average daily rate of $632. That was up 49% compared with 2019, pre-Covid.

Of special note, Wailea Maui and its luxury resort area had an average daily rate of $1,000. That’s up an jaw-dropping 56% since 2019.

West Maui’s Lahaina, Kaanapali, and Kapalua hotels had an average daily rate of $560, just over half the Wailea rates. That makes for another great opportunity for visitors to stay at the beach, on Maui, for less.

Kauai hotel prices soared by 64%.

Overall, hotels on Kauai were way up, with an average daily rate of $465.

Big Island hotels up 53%.

Big Island hotels showed an average daily rate of $420, which was up just over 53% compared with 2019.

Kohala Coast had the highest rates on Big Island and the largest increase statewide. Average daily rates there are now $662, which is up 72% compared with 2019.

Honolulu hotels had the least increase in rates overall.

Oahu hotels reported an average daily rate of $244, which was up just 6% compared with 2019. This is another sweetspot to be noted by visitors as it represents among the best value in Hawaii accommodations.

Waikiki hotels, specifically, had an average daily rate of $230, which was up by just 3% compared with 2019.

Hawaii has the highest hotel rates in the U.S.

Compared with other U.S. travel destinations, Hawaii led all other markets in average daily rates during the first quarter with an average daily rate of $362. Hawaii rates were followed by Miami and Phoenix.

Tips on Saving Money at Hawaii Hotels.

Gone are the days where you called the hotel to negotiate a price. And if you don’t qualify as a Hawaii resident for Kamaaina rates, this is going to take some sleuthing.

Booking directly on the hotel website can save you money or give you some perks. It reduces the hotel’s costs. For example, if  you book on Expedia, the hotel has to pay them for that booking.

See if a hotel package that includes parking, breakfast, and/or resort fees is a good deal compared with buying those piecemeal.

Search on Google for “budget hotels on (insert island)” which will generate leads for you to pursue.

Consider staying on Oahu, where prices have increased the least since pre-Covid. And on Maui, consider West Maui rather than South Maui, where rates are almost double.

Redeem travel points on loyalty programs and credit cards for hotel nights.

Compare rates with vacation rentals, which often include a kitchen that reduces food costs.

How do you save money at Hawaii hotels?

23 thoughts on “As Hawaii Hotels Soar To Highest In USA, What Visitors Can Do”

  1. West Maui’s Lahaina, Kaanapali, and Kapalua hotels had an average daily rate of $560, just over half the Wailea rates. That makes for another great opportunity for visitors to stay at the beach, on Maui, for less.

    This is basically double what it was before at certain times of the year. I understand prices are up but this is gouging at this point. Sadly the money won’t stay in Hawaii and people will spend less at local Hawaiian businesses. Quite a few people I know have changed their summer travel plans and are just hanging out at home expecting a recession. The wealth effect is starting to take hold on the negative side. People look at housing slowing, 401k’s down and the increase in prices on everything and they are hunkering down.

  2. When I speak to first timers to the islands I always ask, What are your goals?

    If you’re planning a lot of day activities I suggest booking condo stay than moving to a resort for the remainder of your trip. There’s no reason spending $1,000 a night when you’re not taking advantage of resort amenities.

    Ocean view room is very nice, but since we’ve been to the islands several times on our trip in May to BI we opted for garden view which was $500.00 a night cheaper.

    Fall to Maui is running very high, so I booked a reasonable priced vacation to October to Oahu. Aulani for 4 nights than Outrigger Waikiki Beach resort 3 nights for under 3k.

    Our Fall trip can be canceled if something comes available for reasonable on Maui I will re-book.

  3. These greedy hotels etc will have their comeupance. Not only are they jacking up the customer they are also dragging their feet on bringing people back. Then blaming on labor shortage. Someone mentioned loans is shores. I stayed in room 425 a beautiful room there ocean front in July 4th weekend 2019 for $1600 for 7 days. Car entail was a few hundred dollars. This slowed me to stay at the kahala on Oahu for 5 days and buy about 10k in art etc to support the businesses. If I’m spending all my money on rental cars and hotels not much left for the locals. Gotta cut somewhere.

    1. I would say that hotel rates are also up as they are trying to recover some of their losses from sitting empty for a year while continuing to pay their carrying costs. We own vacation rentals ourselves and based on our own personal experience during the pandemic, it will take us 5+ years to get back to even. The State still made us pay our hotel property taxes at x4 personal property taxes, even though we were empty. Our HOA and mortgage payments continued. It was brutal.

      1. Ouch! BUT… I suppose those are just some of the risks of owning investment properties. Too stressful for me.

  4. We didn’t see a big increase in rates for Kauai this spring. But, Maui late this fall is crazy pricey. Airfare for the islands has become very expensive too.
    Aloha Guys

  5. I know you mentioned that you didn’t think the resort fees were included but do these prices include all the taxes and fees that are tacked on?
    Once you add ALL the costs involved in a room it gets VERY pricey even for mid-level accommodations.
    Thank goodness for local relatives that I can stay with!

  6. I canceled last year’s trip ($219/nt) due to Covid. I canceled this year’s trip (same room $529/nt) due to Price gouging. And that was only 1 hotel. Others canceled were at even higher rates.

  7. Aloha,

    With the hotels in Hawaii charging sky high rates (especially the luxury resorts) and their great revenue pouring in, I am really hoping they are taking good care of their hard working employees and are increasing their pay!

    We miss being there and cannot wait to return to Hawaii, but will have to until hotel and resort rates are reasonable.

    As always, thanks BOH for keeping us informed.

  8. The cheap airfares offset a little. With fuel setting record pricing, airlines are in a fare war. They may not have a place to stay but can fly cheaper to Hawaii than from Seattle to Los Angeles.

  9. When vacationing in Maui we normally stay at Lahaina Shores. Beautiful ocean views, but a tiny pool with a hot tub, no resort services, and a nonexistent beach. But you do have 40 nice restaurants within walking distance and a great working-class clientele. The VRBO landlords have also done a great job of upgrading the individual studios. Before covid, the going rate was $185-220 a night depending on the floor(there are six). It’s now $325-450.

  10. It seems that people don’t care how much it costs to vacation in Hawaii. I live in the Bay area so Hawaii is a hop, skip and a jump to get to paradise. Whenever I talk to anyone about travel, they are either going to Hawaii or just returning from the islands. Cheap airfare definitely helps but the cost of airfare is just a tiny fraction of the cost of lodging and food. Hotels can get away with charging outrageous rates because the demand is there. I stopped going to Hawaii due to Covid but the crowds are keeping me away.

  11. We have a timeshare that we can trade to go to Hawaii. But all of you that have to pay these outrages rates, should seriously consider other options to vacation at. It is just like the tourist industry to raise rates when people are already suffering from inflation and ridiculously high Gas prices! Good going Hawaii Hotels!

  12. That is unfortunate. Accommodations is the biggest cost for most visitors, which may limit the availability for some families. It makes me sad that some may not be able to visit such a beautiful place.

  13. Long time reader here! Thank you so much for all the informative posts, my Many stays have been made wonderful by the info I learn here! Right now so many people are going to hawaii for the first time because of the ridiculously inexpensive airfare deals that happened. I have talked to so many people who are going and when I ask where they are staying I often get “I don’t know yet, we will find someplace cheap when we get there, it’s so cheap right now”. Yikes.

  14. Booked a Waikiki vacation this year as it was much cheaper then the other islands by around $1000, we also booked early enough that an ocean view room and a daily breakfast buffet were included with our stay, the same hotel if booked today is $500 more with a city view room and no breakfast buffet, so yes, rates are climbing alot, FYI, a Waikiki vacation is nothing like staying on an outer island, may have to pay the extra money or forgo a hawaiian vacation next year if rates don’t come down. Aloha

    1. I hope people will think about renting directly from a legal condo owner. That provides more space, a kitchen, and a lanai with a spectacular ocean view (in our case).

      1. They are simply charging what the market will bear. No one is forced to vacation on Hawaii.

        1. No one is forced to vacation anywhere. Stating the obvious isn’t helpful. People here have offered real solutions and a shoulder to cry on.

        2. Exactly. Go elsewhere if it is easier on your budget. I mean this only as a suggestion and not a knock against anyone. I realize that everyone does not have the same budget.

  15. Thanks for your newsworthy updates.
    Looks as if Hawaii is attempting to fix the downfall of tourism during the height of the pandemic by super-charging lodging along with everything else. I’m afraid that the state and it’s businesses are pricing themselves out of tourism all together.

    Between air fares, lodging and rental cars only the “rich” will be able to enjoy.


  16. We just aren’t planning on visiting our usual place on the BI on the Kohala Coast. Rooms we stayed in last summer are double the cost. We’re looking elsewhere, maybe the Caribbean. Price gouging at its finest.


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