Do you need a car in Honolulu?

Hawaii is one of the most beautiful places in the world, and the millions of people that visit yearly can attest to that. If you’re planning to visit, you’ll want to know certain things, such as Do you need a car in Honolulu?

You don’t need a car to get around Honolulu. Oahu has excellent public transport, and you can get around the city using the airport shuttle, The Bus, Waikiki Trolley, Bike, Taxi, Ride-Hailing services, and guided tours. Through these means, you can explore the city and save costs.

However, cars are still the best way to get around the city. Getting a rental car would be a good idea if you want to see every nook and cranny of Honolulu and the entire Oahu islands.

Options For Getting Around Honolulu

Honolulu is one of the most important cities if you’re visiting Hawaii as a tourist. It contains a lot of historic and amazing sites that you’ll want. Several ways to get around Honolulu don’t necessarily involve driving yourself. They include:

1.  Airport Shuttle

Once you land in Honolulu, the best option, if you’re not renting a car, is to take an airport shuttle to your location. The Daniel K. Inouye International Airport isn’t close to the popular resort areas for tourists in tut city, such as Waikiki, Ko’Olina, and Kahala. The airport shuttle costs between $18 to $34, depending on where you’re going and whether you want to share a ride. Shared-ride services will save you cost, but it’ll take longer to get to your destination since everyone isn’t going to the same place.

2.  Bus

Another option for getting around Honolulu is with buses. Oahu has the most efficient public transport system among the Hawaiian Islands. Buses are the cheapest way to get around Honolulu. But they’re also the slowest. You’ll need to exercise patience with buses and plan for the delays. Bus fare is $2.75 for a one-way trip regardless of the distance. For those planning more than one ride, the day pass costs $5.50. 

The prices might change, so you should check the website for current rates. The Bus will get you anywhere on the island. You can also find information about the routes, destination, and timetable on the website.

3.  Taxi and Ride-Hailing Services

If you want to get somewhere fast in Honolulu, it might be best to use a taxi or ride-hailing service. Uber, Lyft, and the likes are present in the city too. It’s a good option for short distances or popular routes. For example, Waikiki Beach to Diamond Head.

4.  Waikiki Trolley

Hop on the Waikiki trolley for those staying in Waikiki who want to explore this tourist neighborhood and nearby sites. There are three lines of Waikiki trolleys, all heading for different spots.

  • Blue Line: this follows the coastal route, and there are stops at Halona Blowhole, the Sea Life Park, and Diamond head.
  • Red Line: This lets you explore the art scene in Honolulu. You can stop at the King Kamehameha statue, Honolulu Museum of Art, and Iolani Palace.
  • Pink Line: This goes from Waikiki to Ala Moana shopping center. You can stop at various points between the two destinations.

5.  Bike

As a tourist in Honolulu, you can also rent a bicycle to get around the city. Biki bikes are one of the popular bike rental services in the city, with about 130 locations in Downtown Honolulu and Waikiki. You can make your reservations on their website with bikes. You can navigate some parts of the city conveniently. With a bike score of 51, the city is bikeable, with some areas more likable than others.

6.  Guided tours

If you’re in Hawaii for tourism, you can also consider guided tours as an option to get around the city. With guided tours, you don’t have to drive. You sit on the tour bus and check out various parts of the city. There are guided tours to historic places like Pearl Harbor.

Is It Advisable to Get a Car in Honolulu?

You don’t need a car to get around Honolulu. However, a rental car is the easiest way to get around Honolulu. This allows you to navigate the city and even explore the whole of the island. The city of Honolulu itself is about 177.2-kilometer square. But the constitution of Hawaii provides that any Hawaiian island that doesn’t belong to a county will be considered part of Honolulu.

This means the entire Oahu Island and all other small uninhabited islands from Nihoa to Kure Atoll, apart from Midway, are all part of Honolulu. Judging by this, the city is around 2,414 kilometers long.

You can get a rental car from various parts of the city. But the two best options are Waikiki and Honolulu Airport. Several reputable rental companies have their offices in these areas. You can also rent a car online, so you only have to pay and pick it up when you get to Honolulu. This can save you from the disappointment of getting to the city and discovering that the kind of car you want isn’t available.

When renting a car, note the parking fees at your hotel. Some hotels charge parking fees up to $40 or even higher. So, you don’t want to pay parking fees throughout your stay in the city. Instead, you can check the itinerary, determine the days you need a car, and rent it specifically for those days.

Another option when renting a car is to go for car sharing. Drive Hui allows you to rent cars per hour. So, you don’t have to park it in the hotel where you’ll have to pay. There are lots of locations in Honolulu where you’ll find their cars parked waiting for you.

In Conclusion

You don’t need a car when in Honolulu. The city has a lot of other options for you anywhere you’re going in the city. But if you want to control your schedule and explore every part of the city, getting a rental car might be the best choice, especially for specific days when you’ll be going to distant parts of the city.