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Layover Trip Report

Dallas
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Layover Trip Report

On a recent trip back from Tokyo, I had an 8 hour layover in HNL. After reading several post here at TA, I saw lots of suggestions, but very few follow-ups about the experience, so here is my report.

Flight landed around 10:00 on a Friday morning. Immigration was super quick (only US passport holder in line!) and customs was uneventful. My bags had been through checked to my final destination, so all I had to do was drop them at the recheck counter and I was out of the airport by 10:30.

Since I only wanted to go to the beach, I chose to take a taxi to Waikiki. Driver dropped me off at a public access across from the Pacific Beach Hotel. Cost was $40 w/tip, and took about 30 minutes.

Based on recommendations here, I walked up the beach to the Royal Hawaiian for lunch outside. If I did it again, I wouldn't go here. I had a $14 Mai Tai that had way too much rum in it, and the cheapest thing on the lunch menu was $20. I had a French Dip that was made with very gristly rib meat - almost inedible - and several glasses of water to choke it down. So lunch wasn’t great but the view was; I’d say I broke even!

Spent the rest of the time on the beach enjoying the sun and the surf, and went back up to the Royal Hawaiian at around 4:00 to catch a cab back to the airport. Due to traffic, this ride took about an hour and cost $45 w/tip. Already had my boarding pass, so I just breezed through security and caught my 6:00 flight.

All in all, I’d say it was a good way to pass 8 hours in HNL.

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Philadelphia, PA
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1. Re: Layover Trip Report

Thank you for the report! I know a lot of people ask about what to do on layovers, and it sounds as if you certainly had a good situation to make the most of yours with some beach time! Did you rent a beach chair or anything, or did you just have a towel & suit handy from your baggage?

I must've missed recommendations for lunch at the Royal Hawaiian before (or maybe just ignored because of the prices lol), but it certainly is a beautiful hotel. I think I might have been more inclined to do Duke's since I'm a fan of their lunch buffet with the salad bar.

Lagrangeville, NY
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2. Re: Layover Trip Report

Thank you for the trip report.

Dallas
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56 reviews
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3. Re: Layover Trip Report

No rentals - I had everything I needed in my backpack.

Alaska
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4. Re: Layover Trip Report

I would have the spent the time exactly the same way! Lunch and beach equals perfect.....thanks for sharing your experience. Deb

lwj
San Jose, California
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5. Re: Layover Trip Report

The only thing that I might have added is a short stop at Leonard's.....

Kapaa, Hawaii
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for Maui, Hana, Oahu
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6. Re: Layover Trip Report

It's wonderful of you to take the time to write this report I really appreciate it, jmtrup. What a great day in Waikiki, sorry about the lunch though. I too think you broke even!!

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Waikiki
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Boston, MA
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7. Re: Layover Trip Report

This is the first forum discussion I'm checking on this... I have a shorter layover in HNL on a Monday (3/25) - arrive from Maui 230pm and leave at 9pm.

1. Is that enough time to get into town/onto beach and back? $80 r/t for 4 hours...? Cheaper way to/from the beach? (Perhaps less time as those 2 flights are booked on separate itineraries...) Showers on the beach?

2. Any other thoughts on how to spend the time?

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Philadelphia, PA
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8. Re: Layover Trip Report

JTR- usually people here comment back to those asking about layover activities that there won't be enough time for what they want, but on our last trip we had about the same layover as you (maybe a little less even) coming from Kauai and we had plenty of time to take a taxi to go have dinner and drinks at La Mariana Sailing Club. We had already been in Waikiki earlier in the trip, but I think heading there to at least take in the atmosphere and an early dinner at Duke's would work for you....maybe not the actual "beach" time though since you'll have about 4 hours or less of actual time. You can search here for shuttle suggestions that are cheaper than a taxi too.

I should add the taxi to La Mariana was $20 each way and the driver wasn't pleased we weren't going all the way to Waikiki! I think he actually tried to refuse us for a more expensive fare but we got in anyway LOL.

Edited: 10:32 am, March 08, 2013
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new jersey
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9. Re: Layover Trip Report

Thanks so much for sharing!

I would have headed straight to the beach too :)

It was very nice of you to take the time to share your experience... I think it will be extremely helpful to so many others that post about layovers and ideas on what to do.

Aloha!

10. Re: Layover Trip Report

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