Should Visitors Pay New $10 Kauai Beach Parking Surcharge?

The Kauai County Council is planning to implement a new $10 fee for visitors at some of its Kauai beach parks. The process started two years ago. Then last July, the Kauai Department of Parks and Recreation performed a study that was focused on three beaches in particular. They are Poipu Beach Park, Black Pot Beach Park/Hanalei, and Lydgate Park. The proposed $10 fee is the same as the rates at Kauai’s state parks (Haena State Park and Waimea Canyon State Park).

The bill, which received unanimous county council approval, and will likely be decided on tomorrow, seeks to set fees solely for visitors and not residents. This is purportedly to help avoid crowding at beaches, but could it, in effect, do further damage to the reputation of Kauai tourism? Read on.

One of the bill’s authors said that the intent was to “charge visitors for parking and not to charge residents.” The plan previously set forth was for rental cars to be charged. Ever heard of Turo? They rent cars that might not be identified as rentals. So likely some other methodology will be required

Violation of parking rules would come with a planned fine of $100 for the first ticket and up to $500 after that.

We also wonder how this would work at Poipu Beach or Hanalei, for example, two of the major beaches which have parking lots. Would visitors look for on-street parking in local neighborhoods instead of along busy Poipu Road or Weke Road? It’s possible, in fact likely, that street parking would also be restricted or ticketed, much like we see on the way to Haena Beach on North Shore Kauai.

Would shuttle service play a role?

We wonder if the county is contemplating a shuttle service that stops at various points, including at these County lifeguarded beaches.

Bottom line: We want to avoid biting the hand that feeds us. Fees often give the feeling of bad timing and come across as being yet another questionable Kauai anti-visitor plan.

Keep in mind that Kauai visitors already pay high taxes through their accommodations and elsewhere. Those include the 4.712% tax on pretty much everything, plus 13.25% tax on accommodations. It’s hard not to wonder where does that money go anyway?

Please share your thoughts.

Beat of Hawaii © photo at Poipu Beach Kauai.

Post updated 1/12/22.

289 thoughts on “Should Visitors Pay New $10 Kauai Beach Parking Surcharge?”

  1. We have friends that live over in Hana and we are thinking we will not be back to see them again and the major reason will be the extra charges that are being inflected on out of state visitors. We really do understand that your economy is 90% based on people that do not live on Hawaii and I get that, so as uninformed as I am and for the most part it seems as though Maui county needs more capital for rebuilding parks and beaches, hopefully I can throw in my two cents. When you rent a car you put down that you will be visiting beaches and you will be given a “hanger”( and charged a fee.) which you put on your rear view mirror while at the beach. No tag, a nice healthy ticket There has to be a better way that is what is happening.

  2. I know people hate to pay fo park for any recreational purpose or for entertainment but 90 plus percent off the mainland cities charge for parking in a lot of areas such as for the beach n the anywhere in the city , I say if u don’t like paying for prime beach parking or any extracurricular activity I say walk or take a cab, what I would like to know is if zuckerberg has to pay for the beach use by his compound , or did he donate enough for the county to overlook this nonresident , if visitors have to pay a fee to park n use the beach n parks what about the rich n beautiful from California with their second n third weekend homes on Kauai that aren’t full time residents until there charged vactioars shouldn’t .

  3. Aren’t tourists taxed enough? Just for the night’s stay there are $50+ in hotel taxes, rental taxes add up to making a tourist think to go elsewhere. Parking fees are why we don’t go to the big Island anymore. Plus the selective enforcement of traffic laws.

  4. We just paid a $20 parking fee in the beach parking lot at the Mauna Kea hotel on the Big Island. Tourists pay, locals don’t. I’m not sure it’s legal.

    1. Another thing that causes animosity between malihini and kamaaina…Hawaii is losing the aloha spirit in MHO

  5. If you put more taxes on visitors going to beach parks, we will stop coming to Kauai for 6 weeks as we have done for years. You already almost double the charge for rental cars and I suggest you put a fee on that. If you add $10 to each parks, you will need to spend extra to monitor and collect the fee. Very bad idea for your county and may result in many renters like us deciding to go elseware. We visitors spend lots of money on food, goods and lodging and those sellers will suffer

    1. “We” didn’t double rental car fees; that was a result of all of you flocking back in mass, and the rental company is having limited inventory.

      The damage done to our state parks due to high volume tourism is a real problem. So, if paying a mere $10 (earmarked for counteracting said damage) is the straw that broke your back, then yes, please go elsewhere.

      Just because you don’t live in Hawaii doesnt absolve you of kuleana.

      1. From what I have read, what the state parks on Kauai need are more funds for onsite super vision. I have read that Polihale is become a nightmare from misuse and that it is not tourists that are causing problems there. This is very unfortunate because I camped there many years ago and to this day consider it one of the world’s great beaches. It would be great if there was fuming to get the trucks off the beach and make it safe to visit there again. What about shuttles?

  6. Visitors know when they are being taken advantage of. One more nail in the coffin to cause
    visitors to travel to new destinations, not Hawaii.


Comments are closed.

Scroll to Top