Everyone dreams of someday living in Hawaii.
They picture a life of sun, sand, and relaxation.
But the truth is that there are both good points and bad points to living there.
If you are considering a move, it’s important to understand what you’re in for.
25 Pros Of Living In Hawaii
1. Weather In Hawaii is like weather Nowhere Else
While most states have weather that fluctuates, that’s not the case here.
It is different from every other state because it is not located in North America.
Within the U.S. no state is further south than Hawaii is.
Its southern location places it near the equator.
This is the reason the weather is so desirable every month of the year.
There are 11 subclimates throughout Hawaii, so no matter what part of it you are in the weather is nice.
You can choose to live on the eastern or northern side of the state if you don’t mind a good soaking rain.
The mountains of Hawaii can see as much as 404 inches of rain every year.
If sunny days and dry land are more appealing to you, you’ll want to live in western or southern Hawaii, where the most rain they get in an average year is eight inches.
In general, the closer you live to the sea level, the warmer the weather will be.
The higher elevations bring with them lower temperatures, so you can live in the climate you want to.
The average lowest outdoor temperature in Hawaii is 52 degrees Fahrenheit, and the highest average outdoor temperature is 95 degrees Fahrenheit.
2. Low Crime Rates
In terms of crime rates, Hawaii is safer than most other states.
With most residents maintaining positive morale at all times, the occurrences of crimes throughout the state are extremely low.
Since Hawaii is a series of islands, the state is too small to make it a viable place for criminals to hide.
A sold infrastructure greatly contributes to these conditions.
3. Excellent Infrastructure
As a major tourist attraction, a crumbling infrastructure would spell near disaster in Hawaii.
But that isn’t an issue, because the state has always maintained excellent infrastructure.
Navigating Hawaii by car is easy and safe to do.
Drivers can easily get from anywhere to anywhere else, due to numerous connecting roads.
Though certain parts of Hawaii are still being developed, both private and public transportation is safe and convenient to use.
You will find public transportation options in each of the main cities.
It’s always possible to take busses the entire length of the state.
4. Beautiful Scenery
While most major cities are filled with billboards and multiple tall buildings, Hawaii is filled with thick, bright green lawns and tall trees everywhere you look.
You likely won’t find any other place on earth more peaceful than Hawaii.
It has none of the trappings of a big city.
Rather, it serves as a quiet oasis from the frantic pace of life in most other places.
5. Many Islands To Explore
One of the biggest attractions of Hawaii is that many of its islands haven’t been fully explored.
Taking a trip around the state, just to explore these islands, is a huge part of the appeal of living there.
And the best part is that there are always boats you can rent to embark on these periods of exploration.
Some people that move to Hawaii enjoy doing this so much that they actually buy their own boat.
6. The Culture Is Friendly And Welcoming
You’ll never feel like an outsider in Hawaii.
With so many different cultures celebrated throughout the state, there is little to no discrimination to face.
Locals are always happy to learn about the cultures that visiting tourists believe in.
They embrace all cultures and never classify people based on the culture that he or she embraces.
7. Making Friends Is Easy To Do
With such a small population those who live in Hawaii are always happy to have one more friend.
If you move there, you’ll never have to worry about not fitting in or being accepted.
Residents of Hawaii are very tolerant of tourists, and they love to see new people move into the state.
And with so many opportunities to socialize, you can make friends and have an active social life in no time at all.
8. Class Isn’t Determined By Money
In most places throughout the U.S., how much money you have dictates how well people treat you.
But that is not the case in Hawaii.
Its non-competitive nature means your neighbors and friends won’t care whether you have more money or own nicer possessions than they do.
If you’ve spent too many years in the rat race of corporate America, a move to Hawaii could be good for you.
The pace of daily life is much slower with fewer expectations than probably anywhere else in the country.
The typical small talk that most people engage in with those they’ve just met or don’t know well is hardly a problem in Hawaii.
When you meet people in a social setting, such as a party, don’t expect to be asked about your occupation or even what kind of car you drive.
Residents aren’t concerned with these details.
They mostly want to know what you consider fun to do.
9. It Is The Place To Be If You Work In The Tourism Industry
Not surprisingly, more residents of Hawaii are employed by the tourism industry than any other.
Tourist booms often lead to thousands of new positions being created in the industry.
There are almost always opportunities for employment as not only a tour guide, but also a travel agent, and resort/hotel staff.
10. It Has Many National And State Parks
If you love going to parks, Hawaii will probably make you happier than anywhere else in the world.
Hawaii is home to five national parks and 50 state parks.
Each one of the state parks represents part of the rich history of Hawaii.
Visiting all of them is an excellent way to get a better sense of what life in Hawaii is all about.
11. More To Do Outside Than Inside
Residents of Hawaii rarely spend time in the house during the day.
There are too many outdoor activities to engage in instead.
You name it, you can do it in Hawaii.
Some of the most popular activities include snorkeling, whale watching, golfing, surfing, luaus, and beach hopping.
Snorkeling and whale watching tours are held frequently and are open to anyone.
And if you like hiking, you’ll have endless opportunities to do it in Hawaii.
While there are many hikes that are perfect for beginners, there are more intense hiking trails that can take up to three days to complete.
But if three days (or even a few hours,) of hiking, doesn’t appeal to you, horseback riding might.
This can be a great way to see so much of what Hawaii has to offer.
You can book tours for yourself or as part of a group.
And if you don’t know how to ride a horse, it’s easy to take group or individual, private lessons.
Regardless of which island you choose to live on, there are places where you’ll be able to go camping.
It’s worth noting that most, but not all, camping sites can be accessed by the public.
These far outnumber the private camping sites around Hawaii.
12. Beaches, Beaches, and More Beaches
There are probably more beaches in Hawaii than anywhere else in the world.
It’s the first thing most people think of when they think of Hawaii.
The state does not disappoint since there are more than 100 beaches to see.
You’d have to move to Hawaii just to have time to visit them all.
Most of the best beaches are divvied up between the eight main islands.
There’s almost never a bad time to visit the beaches, and most residents visit all year long.
If you ask them, Waikiki Beach is the best in the entire state.
13. There Are Usually Job Opportunities For Healthcare And Construction Workers
Tourism isn’t the only industry there’s a demand for in Hawaii.
If you work in healthcare or construction, job opportunities will likely be plentiful.
Islands like Oahu have a large population of elderly residents.
These people often need someone to take care of them at home.
For single people who want to live in Hawaii, working as a live-in assistant is a popular occupation.
Mental health services also often need qualified people to work throughout the state.
Construction firms are almost always hiring in Hawaii.
It’s not uncommon for residents to want to remodel their homes.
This means the demand is also high for roofers and tilers.
14. It’s Paradise For Passionate Foodies
There is no lack of food to sample in Hawaii.
As long as you like seafood, you’ll be able to have a robust diet if you live there.
One of the most popular dishes is Poke bowls, a dish that combines rice with fish.
The fish is raw, marinated, and hard for almost any seafood lover to resist.
Though you can find Poke bowls on the menus in restaurants around the country, its origins are in Hawaii.
Another popular seafood dish that locals enjoy is shrimp fried rice, which is the highlight of the menu at Ramen Ya.
15. You’ll Have Lots Of Downtime
So many people work overtime at their jobs that it can quickly become overwhelming and draining.
But overtime is practically unheard of in Hawaii.
When business hours are done for the day, you are too.
It’s more common than not for groups of co-workers to gather at the end of the day and just relax and chat over food and drinks.
It is such a big deal in Hawaii that this downtime after the workday is complete has a name; Pau Hana.
Weekend days are even more relaxing in Hawaii than weekdays are.
For example, a weekend tradition in Oahu is for residents to gather at Ala Moana Beach Park for picnics.
16. Dress Code Is Casual
Rarely, if ever, is there an occasion to put on a fancy suit or evening gown if you live in Hawaii.
The state’s residents are so laid back that formal clothes are almost never worn.
In fact, two of the most worn pieces of clothing are muumuus and aloha shirts.
In many cases, the only footwear you need is flip-flops.
17. Socializing Is Optional
While there is always something to do in Hawaii, you don’t always have to be out-and-about.
It is also the perfect place to be a recluse if you choose to be.
No one will make you feel guilty if you prefer to stay at home and engage in solo activities at your convenience.
Ideally, Hawaii is best suited for people who want to be social, but still need some time to themselves.
18. Discounts Are Available
Though the cost of living can be high in Hawaii, there are ways around it.
One is to shop for food at farmer’s markets as opposed to grocery stores.
But the other is that once you have a driver’s license in Hawaii, it gets you a discount at a lot of local businesses.
This discount is called kama’aina, which is the word ‘local,’ in Hawaii.
19. Neighborhoods Perfect For Families
Especially if you have a family, moving to Hawaii will benefit all of you.
The top three cities for families to live in are Honolulu, Pearl City, and Hiko.
If you’re a young professional you will probably find Pearl City appealing.
If you’re looking to live in Hawaii without breaking the bank, most locals would advise a move to Hiko, as it is the cheapest city in the state.
20. Its Environmentally Conscious
If environmental causes are a big concern for you, chances are you will find living in Hawaii to be refreshing.
The entire state is very eco-conscious.
You’ll never see a plastic bag given to shoppers in any store, drinks are packaged in recycled glass bottles, and takeout food is always placed in paper packaging.
Even the majority of houses are built in an eco-friendly way, with many being made of wood.
21. Property Values Are Always High
Though buying a home in Hawaii isn’t cheap, you can purchase one with the knowledge that the value of your property will be significant.
The housing market is stable so if you can afford to make the move, it can be a good investment in your future.
For the most affordable homes, shop around in West Hawaii in places like Ewa, Kapolei, Makakilo.
22. Avoid Daylight Savings Time
Unlike the rest of the U.S. Hawaii doesn’t observe daylight savings time.
So if gaining or losing an hour bothers you, Hawaii is the perfect place to move to.
All you have to do is keep track of the time difference, in order to communicate with friends and family back home.
23. You’ll Always Have Fresh Fruit
Living in Hawaii makes it easier to incorporate fruits into your daily diet.
You’ll have constant access to the freshest avocados, pineapple, guava, mango, bananas, and papayas.
While most fruits grow to the size you’d expect, avocados in Hawaii get to be as big as a softball.
These fruits can always be bought at the many farmer’s markets you’ll have to choose from.
24. No Need To Hit The Gym
Most of us drag ourselves to the gym because we know that ultimately it’s good for physical and mental health.
This isn’t necessary in Hawaii, because there are so many ways to get out and exercise, that going to the gym seems boring in comparison.
25. Endless Rainbows
It can be tough to spot a rainbow in most parts of the U.S.
But in certain parts of Hawaii, you can see one almost every day.
This is one of the things locals mention the most when asked what they like about Hawaii.
Top 25 Cons Of Living In Hawaii
1. Issues With Trash Collection
Because Hawaii is overwhelmingly rural, there isn’t a good system in place for trash collection.
A lack of waste management companies is the root of the problem.
In this respect, the state’s infrastructure is not sufficient to support all of its residents.
Most people that live in Hawaii have to transport their own trash to the nearest waste collection center.
Since Hawaii is isolated from the rest of the U.S. trash is disposed of by shipping it away or just burning it up.
2. Difficulty Obtaining Water
Trash collection isn’t the only area of life where the infrastructure is lacking in Hawaii.
The state’s water infrastructure means that this natural resource is hard to come by.
The only parts of Hawaii where it is easy to get water at home are Hilo and Kailua-Kona; their water infrastructure is superior to any of Hawaii’s other cities.
Otherwise, the rest of the cities primarily rely on rainwater.
Not only that, but Hawaii also has a problem with Leptospira.
This is a dangerous bacteria present in many of Hawaii’s freshwater ponds.
If the bacteria gets into your mouth, eyes, or nose, it can cause symptoms similar to the flu.
Leptospira can also enter your body through any broken skin.
3. Public Education Is Not Good
If you have school-age children, you should know that the public education system in Hawaii is not good.
Most public schools simply can’t get the funding they need in order to operate satisfactorily.
They tend to be understaffed for the number of students enrolled.
For this reason, many families in Hawaii choose to send their children to private schools.
However, private schools in Hawaii don’t come cheap.
4. You May Feel Trapped
Chances are, wherever you live now, you can easily drive to see friends and family.
But when you live in Hawaii it’s different.
The only way in and out of the islands is by plane, and airfare isn’t always affordable.
Also, Hawaii lacks the feel of a large, bustling city.
If you want to go to a sports game or concert, you’ll have to plan a trip away from the islands.
5. It Isn’t Entrepreneur Friendly
Do you dream about starting your own business?
You may not want to move to Hawaii if you do.
It will be harder than running a business in any other state in America.
Regulated industries make starting a business an uphill battle. To open one you’ll have to navigate through a lot of red tapes.
The next step is to then build a customer base.
But this isn’t always easy to do, as native Hawaiians can be untrusting of people who relocated there.
If you can’t establish trust for your business, you will never achieve the level of success you’re aiming for.
6. Receiving Shipments Is Time Consuming & Expensive
When you purchase items online, you’ll wait quite a while to get them delivered.
And you’ll pay more in delivery fees than in any other state (with the possible exception of Alaska.)
Ordering from a retailer like Amazon still involves waiting a lot longer for your items to arrive than you’re used to.
The more items you order at once, the more likely they are to be shipped together.
7. Healthcare Can Be Scarce
Access to convenient and reliable healthcare is somewhat limited in Hawaii.
Oahu is the only island where healthcare is easily obtainable.
If you live anywhere else you may have to travel far in order to see a medical professional.
This is especially true on the Big Island and applies to primary, specialized, and even mental care.
8. Volcanic Smog Can Be Irritating
Hawaii has a real problem with smog released into its air from volcanoes.
If you live in Hawaii and you are prone to sinus infections or have allergies, this can be a huge negative.
The only way to avoid the smog is to stay inside until it clears up.
9. Bugs/Pests Are Everywhere
If you’re the type to cringe at the sight of bugs, Hawaii is not the place to live.
Even the cleanest homes have bugs in them eventually.
It’s not unusual to see flying cockroaches that are three inches long.
You may also spot caterpillars that grow to be as long as a small snake.
These caterpillars are known to sting people too.
Even the waters aren’t safe from pests.
You could encounter a Hawaii Box Jellyfish; if one bites you it can be as bad as a snake bite.
10. Repairs And Replacements Will Be Frequent
Because of the air in Hawaii being humid and salty, many things get rusty much faster than they would be living anywhere else.
Items like bicycles have to be replaced frequently because of this.
Even if you have a car, it’s likely to be dirty more often than it’s clean.
Hawaii’s roads may be easy to navigate, but they aren’t the cleanest ever.
The heat from the sun is so strong in Hawaii that most homeowners repaint every 15 years.
Wet items can develop mold in as little as two days.
11. Scattered Abandoned Cars
Pretty much everywhere in Hawaii, you will see cars that have been abandoned.
Whether they are cluttering up a side street or they’re on someone’s lawn, they are a sight no one wants to see.
Left for years they will start to rot and fall apart.
This poses a threat to the environment because these abandoned cars will leak fluids like petroleum.
They also cause problems when they collect sitting water.
This inevitably leads to the breeding of lice, rats, parasites, and insects, all of which carry diseases that can be fatal in some cases.
12. The Homeless Population
With the cost of living in Hawaii as high as it is, there is a large homeless population.
These people are often the victims of robbery and rape.
Many of them become homeless after spending years on welfare.
When it runs out they have no place to go and take to the streets.
The state has had a limited amount of money in which to address this problem with.
13. Bringing A Pet In Is Difficult
If you have a beloved pet, you might want to think twice about moving to Hawaii.
There is no rabies in Hawaii.
While this is great for pet owners who already live there it can cause some problems when you’re moving with one.
Moving from anywhere in the U.S. with your pet means that there are mandatory blood tests and rabies vaccines that need to be completed first.
Even after a negative rabies test is completed you still have to wait 120 days before you can bring your pet into the state.
If you try to bring them in before that, the state will quarantine them for as long as four months.
Acquiring housing is also more difficult with a pet.
Many rental properties either won’t allow pets or place restrictions on having them, just like in most states.
But be aware that if you buy a house associated with a homeowner’s association involved, they may not allow pets at all.
Moving to Hawaii with your pet can make finding a suitable home a difficult task.
14. Everything Takes Forever
In Hawaii, people move at their own pace, which is considerably slower than almost anywhere else in the world.
While this may sound appealing in some ways, in other ways it can be inconvenient and even annoying.
Appointments aren’t always kept, and no one sticks to much of a schedule.
So if a repairman is supposed to be at your house at 10 a.m. they may not show up until hours later.
Even something as simple as a doctor’s or dentist appointment will likely take much longer to get than you are used to.
15. Mail Delivery Isn’t The Same
Where you live now, you are probably used to a mail carrier making daily deliveries.
But in many parts of Hawaii that doesn’t happen.
It’s more likely than not that you will have to get a P.O. Box and come get your mail yourself.
However, it’s worth noting that companies like FedEx and UPS will deliver packages to your house.
16. Lava Flow Can Be Very Dangerous
With so many volcanoes, around Hawaii, many of which are active, lava flow can be dangerous and even deadly. It’s the most prevalent in Kauila-Kona.
Viewed from a distance, a lava flow is an unforgettable sight to most people.
But seeing it isn’t always easy to do.
The easiest and safest way is to book yourself on a lava boat tour.
Getting to where the tour starts means you’ll be biking for over 15 miles.
17. It Can Be Difficult To Fit In
One thing about Hawaii is that people constantly come and go.
Not everyone who moves to Hawaii will enjoy it enough to stay.
This means that lifelong residents are often wary of meeting people who are new in town.
No one wants to invest time building a friendship only for the person to then move away, forcing those they left behind to make new friends.
Because of this, there is a possibility you might face some hostility when you first move there.
It can take years to prove to new friends that you intend to stick around for the long haul.
18. Hawaii Is Already Full Of People
Despite the fact that people move to and from Hawaii constantly, the state is very populated for its size.
If you live on one of the bigger islands you will find yourself waiting in extremely long lines and pretty much anywhere you want to hang out is already going to be very crowded when you get there.
Things like finding a parking spot at a shopping center tend to be much worse than they would be almost anywhere else in the U.S.
19. It May Drastically Change Your Life
There may be a lot to like about living in Hawaii, but the changes from the life you know now may not be ones you enjoy.
It’s more difficult to live comfortably in Hawaii than everywhere else.
Most jobs pay less than the exorbitant cost of living out there.
And if you don’t move there with a job already lined up, you may never be able to live at the comfort level you’ve grown used to.
20. You’re Limited In Many Ways
If your palette calls for a variety of different cuisines, Hawaii may not be the place for you.
The majority of restaurants serve Asian dishes only.
When you crave Italian, French, or other cuisines you are not likely to find anything in Hawaii that satisfies you.
Living there means changing your diet in ways you might not want to.
You may find some Japanese, Mexican, or Korean restaurants, but they are in the minority.
21. You’ll Hear New Music Later Than Others
Radio stations in Hawaii don’t tend to play the latest releases until they have been out for a while.
In this way, Hawaii lags behind every other state.
If you live for new music you’ll find yourself constantly waiting to be able to hear it.
22. Temptations Can be Difficult
Living in Hawaii is quite different than visiting.
Unless you are set financially, you’ll have to have the discipline to work five days a week while other people are out surfing and enjoying the beach.
This can make it hard to focus on your job.
23. Crimes Still Happen
Hawaii may be a paradise for most, but it has its share of criminals.
The only places where you aren’t likely to encounter crime are Millani Town, Mahaweli, and Kilauea.
The highest crime rates are in Kahului and Kapaa.
24. The Ocean Dictates Peoples’ Actions
It’s not unheard of for classes at public schools in Hawaii to end early when the weather is ideal for swimming or surfing.
This kind of disruption may have negative effects in the future.
25. The Heat Is Constant
The heat of Hawaii is relentless.
If you don’t handle it well, there is a very real chance you could suffer from heat exhaustion.
Constant sun exposure also puts you at a heightened risk for cancer.
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