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42 thoughts on “Driving In Hawaii 2023 | “The Worst State””

  1. We left the Westin in Ka’anapali at 10:30 this morning on our way to Kihei. We stopped for about 30 minutes at Leoda’s for pie (amazing!!) and we are still not in Kihei – it’s 2pm. This is ridiculous. We heard that a dump truck flipped over somewhere ahead. Who knows. People are missing flights. Got out of the car (this is standstill traffic) and chatted with someone who left three hours ahead for their flight at 3pm and they will miss it now. Plus they’re running out of gas. Taking this long to clear an accident is not ok.

    1. Have you ever cleared an accident involving a flipped over dump truck and spilled blood? It’s harder than it looks Glenna.

  2. We were on O’ahu (staying in the Manoa Valley area) for a little over a week last October. Timed our driving to (mostly) avoid rush hour. Drove mostly around Honolulu but also to Kaneohe and Waimanalo. Driving seemed fine to us; certainly no worse than in Sacramento (where we live). You just can’t be in a hurry.

  3. Aloha Guys – Just wanted to say mahalo for another informative article. I especially appreciate the advice to avoid driving during commute hours. I’m pretty sure the Locals will appreciate it also, and maybe, if traffic improves enough, they’ll welcome visitors once again. Be well. Aloha!

  4. After moving here, four years ago, the article talks about the poor condition of roads, traffic, things like that, but what is missed is just the way people drive. We live on the big island. We have a really long section of road south of Kona, where the speed limit is anywhere from 35 to 45 miles an hour. There’s a lot of people that will speed in the sections, they will pass people on the double yellow line, they will drive, 25 miles an hour with 19 cars behind them and refused to pull over. Or they will stop in the middle of the road to let someone make a left-hand turn across traffic, knowing they have 10 or 12 cars behind them. I can appreciate the courtesy and the Aloha but really? You’ve got a dozen people behind you, just keep going

    1. Absolutely understand what you’re saying. We lived on the windward side of Oahu, on Kam Hwy between Punaluu and Hauula. Heavily traveled road. Tourists and locals trying to get to work. Between Kaneohe and North Shore, no other road to get home, or anywhere. If there was an accident or flooding, we were literally stranded. If you were stuck behind tourists going 20mph, there was little chance of getting a lull in traffic or straightaway to pass. The locals have no fear, of course. Patience is the key. You will get there. Eventually. But even with minor traffic problems, I wouldn’t have traded my time there for the world. Paradise is being able to throw a stone from your house to the ocean. And having your morning coffee on the beach. Aloha.

  5. I think the biggest thing you’re missing, at least for Maui is the amount of accidents. I’ve never seen more reckless, careless, cavalier drivers then anywhere in the states or the World I’ve traveled. Red lights and stop signs are optional, yellow means green, and people have -Zero- clue how to merge, right of way or not pulling out on a red light turn in front of oncoming green light drivers. It’s the craziest thing I’ve seen. So yeah, get your head out of the clouds, pay attention, drive safe and be respectful. Aloha is a two way street, not selection when you want it.

  6. I find speeding drivers are mostly locals unless rental agencies are renting out beat up trucks and cars. For the most part I use cruise control and set it for the road’s speed limit. It is without fail some pick up truck will blast past me in no passing zones where it’s really not safe to be driving in excess of the limit. Currently visiting on Big Island and I have to say I do love the reflective markers in the roads especially in the rain at night. Wish more states would use it.

  7. I have to agree with Rich T, on the conditions of the roads (not so much on attitude, it’s everywhere now). If the mayor had to drive around the island once a week, hopefully he would see how bad the roads are. It not only speaks to the tourism aspect but locals have to drive on these roads also. Putting their lives and their vehicles in jeopardy daily. Safe pullouts for people to get out of the way with good signage and a new paving program would go along way,plus put money back into the local economy (if we use local business ).

  8. Traffic and congestion planning in HI is non-existent. On the Big Island the new Saddle Rd. is a joke. To build a major trans-island highway that goes from 2 to 3 to 4 lanes, starts and ends in nowhere is loco. Why couldn’t HI apply for Interstate highway funds to build it? Are they only reserved for Oahu? But my biggest beef about HI drivers on the Big Island and probably every other island but Oahu, is the passive aggressive driving practiced by many locals. Since rental cars are easily identified as they are the shiniest and newest cars on the road, many drivers will harass them if they drive too slow. Once I followed from a distance two cars going down H11 from Volcano. The local tailgated the tourist for miles almost rear-ending him.

  9. Yes, the driving on HI roads is getting worse. Particularly with tourism up. But, the situation on some of the most problem roads could often be improved by Widening those two-lane roads! A prime example, as mentioned by BoH, is the road to Kaanapali from Hwy 30/380 intersection to Lahaina. This is a Major tourist/service worker route to the island’s tourist center. Why is it still tw0-lane??? Yes, getting around McGregor Pt. is an issue, but what about the rest of the road? There’s plenty of room to widen it, but all they do is repave it. How does that improve traffic flow for anyone? Where are ‘all those tax dollars at work’? Remodeling some county offices in Kahului?

    1. I live in California and have driven in Hawaii and the northeast and even England. As for gas, there have been times I’ve seen higher prices here than in Princeville. That being said, the northeast was the worst hands down (New York area mostly). A friend of mine thought an airport shuttle bus driver was going to kill him and his family on a visit there one time.

  10. We live in California where gas prices are absurd, so Hawaii’s just seemed like a regular Tuesday. The road from the airport in Maui to Kaanapali takes awhile, but otherwise, we’ve found it to be relaxing to drive on the islands. I guess it’s all about perspective. California should have been dead last.

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