Jellyfish Stings | Hawaii Calendar and Prevention

Hawaii Jellyfish Sting Warnings | Important For Your 2022 Vacation

Plan a “jellyfish sting-free” Hawaii vacation with our updated 2022 calendar of Hawaii Jellyfish sting warning dates and suggestions. You may want to keep this information handy when you are looking for cheap flights to Hawaii and plan your dates accordingly.

Jellyfish are fascinating and are themselves comprised of nearly 95% water. Their needle-like stingers are located on their tentacles. When activated, the stinger shoots into the victim, releasing the venom. This all happens in a millionth of a second.

Jellyfish Sting Tips

Location. South facing Hawaii beaches are most impacted by jellyfish eight days after a full moon. These include Waikiki, Ala Moana Beach Park, Hanauma Bay, and the Waianae Coast on Oahu. Kauai can have warning signs posted at Poipu Beach and even Salt Pond. Maui beaches and Big Island beaches are also affected but typically have fewer problems.

Timing and awareness. You’ll usually find jellyfish on impacted beaches eight days following a full moon. The problem can persist for three days. If you’re here during a jellyfish invasion, talk to the lifeguard for advice.  Also, check the beach to see if any jellyfish are present on the sand.

If you are stung, you’ll find some good news below. There is much ongoing research in jellyfish stings, and the University of Hawaii has developed a topical treatment in the works. Jellyfish have long been a problem in Hawaii, and they only seem to be getting worse here and globally.

Jellyfish in Hawaii. Here in the islands, jellyfish types seen include the box, moon, and lagoon varieties.

2022 Hawaii Jellyfish Sting Warning Dates

While a jellyfish sting can happen at other times, these are the most likely dates when problems may occur. Also, be on alert the days immediately preceding and following the caution dates.


January 25 to 27
February 24 to 26
March 25 to 27
April 24 to 26
May 23 to 25
June 22 to 24
July 22 to 23
August 19 to 21
September 18 to 20
October 17 to 19
November 16 to 18
December 15 to 17

Jellyfish Treatments and Prevention

Searching online, you’ll find a wide range of suggestions for what to do in the event of a jellyfish sting. Some of the best advice we’ve seen include the following:

1. Seek medical attention as soon as possible if in shock or if you have any complications.

2. Rinse the site with vinegar to deactivate the toxins and remove the remaining tentacles and nematocysts. Others say to wash the area with seawater to deactivate stinging cells. Or you can remove tentacles by scraping them with a credit card or other plastic object.

3. Use hot water or ice packs to reduce the pain duration and intensity. Others suggest after removing the tentacles, immerse the affected arm or leg in hot water of 104 to 113°F for at least twenty minutes.  If other body parts are impacted, a hot shower can be used instead.

4. Friends recommend it, and we have used the After Bite itch eraser for years. It is ammonia and baking soda-based and works well to relieve pain from stings from our experience. A range of new prevention and treatment products is also available, including somewhat controversial ones (do read the reviews). Please let us know what has worked for you.

5. Read over 100 comments below for others’ recommendations.

Another Point of View Offered By Mayo Clinic.

1. Carefully pluck visible tentacles with fine tweezers.

2. Soak the skin in hot water. Use water that’s 110 to 113 F (43 to 45 C). If a thermometer isn’t available, test the water on an uninjured person’s hand or elbow — it should feel hot, not scalding. Keep the affected skin immersed or in a hot shower for 20 to 45 minutes.

3. Avoid the following: scraping out stingers, rinsing with seawater, rinsing with human urine, rinsing with fresh water, applying meat tenderizer, applying alcohol, ethanol, or ammonia, rubbing with a towel, or applying pressure bandages.

Have you been stung by a box jellyfish, and if so, what treatment has been most beneficial? 

Beat of Hawaii photo at Waikiki Beach.

Updated 11/9/21.

146 thoughts on “Hawaii Jellyfish Sting Warnings | Important For Your 2022 Vacation”

  1. Is there an update for Jellyfish Warning dates for 2023? We are coming to Kauai in late September, I would like to be prepared.
    Thanks for your time and this awesome site. So much information 🙂

  2. I was stung just after Sunset at the Sands of Kahaha beach in front of the resort, just 10 ft from the shoreline on 7/14. It stung-through my one piece bathing suit on my midrift and also left wrist. Like a lot of bee stings, only worse. When we got back to our room it was welting in 3 places. Luckily we had vinegar which I am applying. Security came and offered. Hydrocortisone. The front desk had no idea there were jellyfish present, yet the security guard knew immediately what had happened. Apparently the 12th,13th and 14th are watch days for jellyfish this month in Maui, especially on South and West facing beaches. They should have warned us, at the least!

  3. Oct. November has brought in early man o war to waimanalo kailua side of oahu. They also have been staying or spotted the following weekend as well. So staying longer in the months leading to winter while warm water and wind are prevalent. Not much infonin hawaii of siting on beach or site to report. Shame on you hawaii! You should do better with all this tourism money..😩 just put up a sighting web hard is that for the health of locals and tourists!?? This is severe issues!

  4. Stung today on the beach outside of Wailea Elua. Hurts still about an hour later. Lots of little ones on the beach and in the water. Ouch!

  5. Would anyone know if (or have experienced) stings when a person is wearing a full summer weight body suit?

  6. I got a jellyfish tangled around my forearm in Lahaina 10/31/21. Burned like hell and my arm had welts all over it. I used white vinegar and it worked well to relieve the pain but by the time I actually got vinegar, it had been almost an hour already and the welts were already disappearing.

  7. This summer I encountered a jellyfish, brushed it with my forearm and it wrapped a bit around my upper arm. Thought I received an electric shock in the water!!!!!! Wow!!!! Checked info on line, scrapped arm with a smooth seashell (use what you got handy). Only had access to a shower, so had the brilliant idea to use a cooler filled with hot water to soak my arm. Hot water was such a relief, kept my arm there for about an hour (figured I was done when it didn’t hurt out of the hot water). Did use white vinegar and then cortisone cream. The jellyfish did leave its marks on me – two months after, I can still see some faint marks where I was hit.

  8. Despite all these stupid and somewhat contradictory suggestions, there remains one very effective treatment for man of war, jellyfish, bee and scorpion stings. It is ammonia!. regular household cleaning ammonia is already about 4% solution. Mix it 50/50 with water to bring it down to 2% solution. Put it directly on the sting asap. Do not do anything else first. Just douse it good and it works. It does NOT work for sea urchins. I have tried and used vinegar, hot water, etc. nothing I have found works for sea urchins. But ammonia neutralizes the acidic poison in jellyfish. In Mexico they use Windex but it is only for the ammonia contained in the windex so a waste of resources and time. Keep some pre mixed in your dive/ beach bag so You can just squirt it on. This is one thing that I know for sure!

    1. We were seeing people getting stung this past week of june 24th on the Big Island. They were early.

        1. Used vinegar first and hot tub after and the pain was gone in 30 minutes. It was a minor sting, however. No sign if tentacles, just a brush.

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