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“Great Ride, Amazing Views, Hilarious Pilot Commentary”

Sunshine Helicopters Maui
Ranked #7 of 31 Tours in Kahului
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: In an industry that demands the best Sunshine Helicopters delivers! We are the only company on Maui offering customers the ability to pre-book "First Class" front-row seating and the choice of two High-Tech helicopters: 1. Fly the New-Generation EC130 Whisper STAR, outfitted with all the latest technology and roomy cabin for 6 passengers. 2. Eco-friendly AS350 FX STAR, upgraded with the more powerful and quieter Honeywell Turbine engines, burning 10-15% less fuel than our competitors, allowing Sunshine to pass on a tremendous amount of savings to our guests. The fleet of helicopters are fully equipped with emergency pop-out floats for safety, air-conditioning, pilot-to-pax intercom and a 3-camera Sky-Cam Video system recording your actual tour.Sunshine Helicopters is a FAA Part 135 Air Carrier and Tour Operator Program of Safety (TOPS) Certified. Most of our pilots are former Flight Instructors of the top aviation schools in the nation or highly skilled military veterans. Your safety is our #1 priority!
Kihei, HI
Level Contributor
45 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“Great Ride, Amazing Views, Hilarious Pilot Commentary”
Reviewed June 26, 2011

When i arrived in the lobby, it was spacious, clean, memorabilia was well organized and the receptionist was very nice, professional and helpful. I was offered a drink and then shown down a clean, well-lit hall to the back part of the building where one of the ground crew checked my weight and told me where I would be seated in the helicopter. In the next few moments the rest of the customers who would be taking the tour arrived and then we were taken to the briefing room and heard a rendition of the safety rules similar to that of on airliner (lasted about 3 mins.). After the briefing, the group walked out to a small patio with comfortable benches and a nice view of the rest of the airport. A little noisy but to be expected with the multitude of jetliners taxiing and taking off. After about 5 minutes the chopper arrived. Another ground crew member led us to the front of the helicopter and each reservation had thier picture taken in front of it. Upon entering the chopper, I was impressed by the comfort and extreme clenliness of it both inside and out. The headphones were noise canceling and comfortable but they were not two way. Our pilot, Fred was very professional and funny, making jokes that everyone laughed at everytime. He was also very qualified, said he had been flying helicopters for 43 years. Our take off was smooth and gave us a great view of Kahului. The course of the flight was amazing and we saw breathtaking views of the volcano. After touring the volcano, we headed towards the West Maui Mountains. The pilot took us up the canyons and at times we were as close as 400 feet to the canyon walls and saw vivid details of the beautiful vegetation and waterfalls. Our pilot always made sure that the people sitting on both sides got a chance to look at the view. Throughout the flight, the pilot gave a comical yet knowledgable commentary on what ever part of the island we were on. I've been coming here for ten years and I learned a lot of neat facts. After a smooth landing, we were led once again into the terminal and were given our pictures. We had the option of purchasing a DVD of the flight, which is a good quality video of all the sights seen. Overall, it was an excellent trip and iI always felt safe, and cared about by the staff. Enjoy!

Visited June 2011
1 Thank Mauicruiser
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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264 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Portuguese first
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English first
Level Contributor
1 review
“Amazing service”
Reviewed June 22, 2011

Stayed at Sugar Beach Resort in Kihei. Maui Sights & Treasures booked or Helicopter trip and got us a great rate . We found them on the web at www.mauivalue.com . Sunshine helicopters is the best air tour on Maui

Visited June 2011
Thank charlene008
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mpls, MN
Level Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed March 28, 2011

We just got back from maui and took the West Maui/Molokai tour. We were able to see the Molokai portion but the pilot complete skipped the west Maui mountain portion of the trip with no explanation. We found out later from a phone call from our booking agent that the reason he didn't go into the West Maui mountains was because of wind conditions. It would have been nice had he explained that to us during the flight or even if they knew that ahead of time we would have opted for a different tour perhaps. Also felt that the people checking you in and explaining procedures thought they were doing us a favor or something. Not very good customer service. We had used this company about 15 years ago and were much happier with them at that time.

Visited March 2011
1 Thank parkan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Bathroom Camera”
Reviewed February 11, 2011

Went to Sunshine Helicopters on Maui in January of 2011. After check-in a employee offered water and restroom. While standing at the toilet I saw a cell phone behind a trash can propped up against the wall at a angle pointing at privates. Picked it up and the video was on. Came out and gave it to the guy behind the desk and told him. He denied that his employee would do this. The employee grabbed his phone and took off not to be seen again. Got money back from the Pleasent activity company and left a phone message on the owner of Sunshine's phone. Six days later, got a call from the same guy behind the desk. Not the owner. I am still trying to contact the owner at this time. I think he should at least hear both sides of the story. Not after anything. Just don't want this to happen to YOU!

Visited January 2011
12 Thank wegotherenow
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lewisville, Texas, USA
Level Contributor
28 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
“Just average... average service, average flight, average pilot, didn't fly the whole route.”
Reviewed December 2, 2010

I'd have to say my experiece was fair at best. The service and experience from when you showed up until you got off the plane was more assembly line feeling and not one of creating a real experience for you. They weighed us, collected our money, gave us the briefing, and put us on the helicopter. Waiting in the small lobby we just sat and listened to the two employees chat about what they did the night before rather than interact with us.

The pilot was nice, but didn't really share much information about what we were seeing. There were many things I wondered about, but we didnt' have two way headsets either so we couldn't ask him.

The flight was supposed to circle the north and south sections of the island. We did the south section, but went through one valley inthe north section and flew back. We didn't cover a majority of the north sections over Lahaina, etc which I wanted to see, but again had no way to ask him about. The flight lasted about an hour as promised, but we didn't get to cover as much ground as showed in the brochure.

I wouldn't go back again. The company does not seem to be customer focused or really striving to provide an overall excellent experience, but they are happy to sell you a DVD for $50 of your flight.

1 Thank TimmyTuna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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