Life in Hawaii is a little different than the rest of the country, and that’s the way we like it. Across the Hawaiian Islands, life is a little slower, and we choose to embody the Aloha Spirit in everything we do. Hawaii is a magical place to live or visit, but if you’re planning a move to these beautiful islands, there are a few things you should know. Without further ado, here are 17 things no one tells you about living in Hawaii, including the good
the bad. and
1. The Aloha spirit is all-encompassing.
Those who call Hawaii home believe in the Aloha Spirit — in welcoming everyone with open arms, and being friendly anyone they encounter. There's nothing quite like the Aloha spirit you'll find in Hawaii. People who have never lived or visited the islands might think it's a stereotype, but here, it's just life.
2. Living in Hawaii is astronomically expensive.
Sure, you might have guessed Hawaii was expensive, but perhaps you didn’t quite realize the extent of it. Because there is a limited about of developable land in Hawaii, and island life is quite desirable, housing costs in Hawaii are astronomical. You will also find that food costs approximately 50 percent more than it does on the mainland, and utility costs are almost 70 percent higher.
3. Everyday is casual Friday in Hawaii.
Most offices enforce an "Aloha Casual" dress code, and no one expects you to get more dressed up than a sundress and your "fancy" slippahs, even for most weddings. Be sure to go through your wardrobe before you move: the only suit you’ll be needing is a bathing suit.
4. The views are truly second to none.
With towering mountains covered in lush, emerald green flora, rugged cliffs, cascading waterfalls, and pristine white sand beaches with sparkling turquoise waters, the views you’ll find in Hawaii rival that of the world’s seven wonders. Easily.
5. And you won’t find better beaches anywhere in the world.
With approximately 750 miles of stunning coastline and beaches in a variety of colors, Hawaiian beaches are absolutely breathtaking. From Hanauma Bay to Punalu’u Beach and everywhere in between, it doesn’t get much better than Hawaiian beaches.
6. The culture shock is real.
With a unique history and incredible diversity, Hawaii is truly a cultural melting pot – and it shows in nearly every aspect of life in the islands. While you might feel culture shock at first, soon you will identify as a local.
7. Life moves slowly.
From alarm-free mornings to relaxed schedules, life is slower in Hawaii, and that’s the way we like it. There’s no need to rush through anything in Hawaii — including that important work project, or a coffee date with a good friend. You’ll be much happier when you slow down and truly live in the moment.
8. You will experience island fever…
It’s easy to go stir crazy when you live on a small island, especially when the only road trip you can take is the drive around the island, and your weekend getaways consist of visiting a neighboring island.
9. ...and sun guilt.
Yes, sun guilt is a real thing, and it sucks. Sometimes, all you want to do is stay inside and binge watch Netflix. But enjoying a lazy day at home can be hard when you feel guilty about not enjoying the weather and taking advantage of exploring Hawaii’s magnificent landscapes whenever you get the chance.
10. The islands are crowded.
Well, actually, let me rephrase this: the island’s main tourism destinations are crowded. You can find seclusion on remote beaches and secluded trails but, more often than not, if you’re headed to anywhere you might find described in a guidebook, it will be crowded.
11. Your vocabulary will change immensely.
Pau hana? Howzit? Broke Da Mout? Da Kine? At first, you’ll shake your head in confusion, but soon enough, your family back home will start commenting on your new vocabulary.
12. You might be allergic to this thing called vog.
Vog, or volcanic smog, wafts over from the Big Island, and is killer on the sinuses. We’re talking severe allergy symptoms and sinus headaches. Your best defense while the vog is thick is to stay inside and make sure to keep taking those allergy meds.
13. The traffic is soul-crushing.
Oahu is home to the worst traffic in the country — second only to Los Angeles. With streets crumbling with potholes and seemingly endless road closures, the average Honolulu resident sits in more traffic than nearly anyone on the mainland. The state is also ranked dead last in highway conditions and cost-effectiveness. Guess you better work on that driving playlist on Spotify. Oh, and one more note: lay off the car horn. Trust me.
14. Though the islands are small, there are so many places to explore.
From active volcanoes and rainforests to sea cliffs and pristine beaches, you will never run out of places to explore on Hawaii’s eight main islands.
15. You might encounter some terrifying insects.
No one warns you about the horrifying bugs you’ll find in Hawaii — most notably the cockroaches and centipedes. What they also forget to mention is that you will also find geckos in your home, and that you should welcome them as roommates, for they eat the nasty little bugs.
16. You’ll never tire of spectacular sunrises, sunsets, and rainbows.
While you might think it’s easy to get over those phenomenal Hawaiian skies, you’d be wrong. Even after years of living in Hawaii, I always admire (and snap a photo) of every gorgeous sunrise, sunset, and rainbow I see — especially if I happen to be at the beach.
17. Finally, you won’t really be allowed to complain — ever.
You definitely won’t be getting any sympathy for your problems when your friends have just been caught in a blizzard. I can’t even count the number of times I’ve tried to vent about something only to be told, "Relax. You live in Hawaii. Life is good."
Well, what other things would you add to this list? Is there anything you would have liked to know before moving to Hawaii? For more great information about our beautiful Hawaiian Islands, check out “
11 Life Lessons Everyone Learns Living In Hawaii.”