From Maui to Oahu | Hawaii Visitors Exodus Saga (Part 2)

Free Roundtrip Airfare + Work Remotely In Hawaii: Movers and Shakas

As if you needed another good reason to come to Hawaii. The NYTimes just wrote about the 6 top spots for your remote office. Needless to say, Hawaii made the list “To consider squeezing in a working vacation or two.” They called it “A golden opportunity for those tempted to take their work on the road after a year of staying put.”

This novel and successful concept takes it one huge step further. The program is about to spring to life again in Honolulu for the second time. At the bottom of the post you can watch a video from the first cohort earlier this year.

It first began last year during COVID in order to bring visitors to work remotely in Hawaii, who volunteer to help Hawaii while they are here, and be offered free round trip airfare, and much more. The organization at the helm is Movers and Shakas, which is sponsored by both the State of Hawaii and local businesses.

To qualify, individuals need to be employed full-time and be able to work remotely from Honolulu. In exchange for the free airfare and discounts on accommodations and more, they are asked to contribute their skills and knowledge to the local community during a stay of at least 30 days. Participants commit to 8 to 10 hours per week, in addition to their remote job, in order to take part. This is also a fantastic way to “try on” the idea of moving to Hawaii.

Once again, the group seeks to draw “World-class talent” to complement that which is already in Hawaii. By doing so, they aspire to incent “both new and returning talent to build a better Hawaii.” Members will be able to leave a footprint on Hawaii by sharing their expertise while they are here. That according to Movers and Shakas.

Movers and Shakas‘ next cohort starts soon.

It will be a group of 50 socially-minded individuals who will stay in Hawaii for between 30 and 60 days. Cohort members will continue their remote jobs while also taking part in the skill-based team volunteering projects that include community building, networking, local experiences, and more.

The first cohort of 50 fellows was selected from nearly 90,000 applicants from around the country who “Continued their full-time remote jobs while building personal relationships, contributing their professional skills to local nonprofits, learning about Hawaii’s unique culture and getting dirty in group work days around Oahu.”

Hawai residents are now also able to join. Again, help with accommodations is provided, and there will even have an Olympic Village-style co-located accommodation.

When to apply.

The applications for the October cohort will be open starting June 21 and will close on July 12.

Program requirements.

This program requires an 8 to 10 hour per week commitment, in addition to your remote job. You just stay the entire time, from October 2 through October 31, and attend all required events. Those chosen will “Actively participate in team-based volunteer projects for at least 15 hours/month for 2 months (2nd month can be remote) [and] respond to weekly surveys in a timely fashion.”

Participants must have legal authorization to work in the U.S., be employed full-time and able to work 100% remotely, and commit to program requirements.

Attend an Info Session on June 14th at 2 pm HST

If you want to learn more, you should register for the upcoming webinar. Use this link. Read on for more details and to watch the video from the inaugural cohort that started last December.

How the program works.

The all-volunteer organization will handpick people in order to “earn a free flight to Hawaii and perks, and will also give back to our islands through community-building activities.” In return, those selected must remain in Hawaii for a minimum of one month.

Free transportation is provided, and those selected will also be able to obtain discounts on accommodations, have access to working space, and will participate in community activities.

“The minimum commitment for M&S participants is at least 30 consecutive days on Oahu from Oct. 2nd to Oct. 31st. We hope you choose to stay longer (at least the two months of your volunteer project) and continue to contribute to Hawaii, potentially making it your home.”

Updated 6/9/21.

13 thoughts on “Free Roundtrip Airfare + Work Remotely In Hawaii: Movers and Shakas”

  1. This Would Be Perfect For Me And My Husband. However He Does Landscaping And I Am A Caregiver. How Would This Be Beneficial For Us?

  2. Didn’t get into the first round but hoping for second! I wish they just saved my application from the first time. 🙂 Mahalo

  3. Please let me know how I can apply.
    Where can I email my information?
    Thank you very much! Margaret

  4. My wife and I effectively did this for 10wks at the front end of COVID. My wife is a teacher and her school went all e-learning for the remainder of 2019-2020 academic year. My engineering job also allowed me to WFH.

    CON’s: our workday started at 4am HST, so need to factor this in when working out accomodations. My wife had zoom PE and fitness classes she was teaching so don’t want to be jumping around above another apt.

    PRO’s: starting at 4am meant that our workday was done around noon, 1pm…and left us the full afternoon to enjoy the beach (when open), or go for a hike (when open).

    Many restaraunts and well known attractions were closed the whole time, and beach restrictions seemed to change every couple weeks… but if you are interested and ready to enjoy the more local Hawaiian (Hello purple goodness and banana fritters at Kamehameha Bakery among many others), we found plenty of eating options to compliment our hot plate cooking….And of course you are in Hawaii, which is never a bad thing.

    We did have a built in guide in our daughter who was a sophomore and had made many local Oahu friends.

  5. We had been planning on doing a temporary relocation for work to Hawaii anyway in April so this is a perfect opportunity for us! We have applied, however, with 1,000+ applicants chasing 50 slots not sure what our chances are. We shall see in the next few weeks I guess. Thanks for providing this unique opportunity!

  6. An interesting concept!! Now, if our dog could come without quarantine, it would be quite an easy decision!!! I lost my tourism job on the mainland so would be happy to volunteer every day!

  7. Mahalo for this information! I just applied with fingers crossed. 😀 Thank you for keeping all of us wannabe Hawaiians informed.

  8. My husband and I are interested in coming there to help and he can work from there remotely. Where do we feel out an application?

    Thanks for giving us the opportunity,


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