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seekfrog

xemira in abouthawaii

considering I know nothing

This community seems a little inactive but I thought I'd throw these questions out. To anyone who can help, it's much appreciated.

I'm moving to Hawaii in a year, to Oahu to be exact, and I had a few stock questions:

1)How is transportation without a car? Would it be easy to get around?

2)If you order things online, are there any major places that don't ship to Hawaii?

3)How easy would it be to get things like dairy replacements? (almond milk, etc.) nut powders-I guess I'm asking if there are alternative health food stores around?

4)What are typical meals?

5)Even though there are many different cultures, are the people divided and stay within their own?(IE would you see Japanese and maybe Filipinos hanging out together as a normal thing?)

6)Is Hawaii affected a lot by current trends/music/styles/movies from the mainland states?

7)How easy is it to travel back and forth from the mainland states?


Thank you so much! <3

Comments

1)How is transportation without a car? Would it be easy to get around?
Very easy to get around. Some may argue that Honolulu is not particularly bike-friendly, but the bike community there is trying to change that. Whether it's by foot or by bus, everything is fairly accessible.

2)If you order things online, are there any major places that don't
ship to Hawaii?

No, as Hawai'i is still part of the United States so there isn't or shouldn't be a problem. Some places *may* add an extra charge since they'll have to ship by air but that's usually indicated anyway when you place an order.

3)How easy would it be to get things like dairy replacements? (almond milk, etc.) nut powders-I guess I'm asking if there are alternative health food stores around?
Health food stores are easy to find.

4)What are typical meals?
In Hawai'i there's really not a "typical meal". All of the ethnicities living on the islands are catered to, so if you're in the mood for Hawaiian food, Burger Kung, chow fun, tonkatsu, lumpia, jerk chicken, or a veggie burrito, you will find it and dim sum.

5)Even though there are many different cultures, are the people divided and stay within their own?(IE would you see Japanese and maybe Filipinos hanging out together as a normal thing?)
You do have your share of cliques, as with any major city, but most people interact with each other. A lot of people are of mixed heritage too, and the general consensus has always been "the more the merrier".

6)Is Hawaii affected a lot by current trends/music/styles/movies from the mainland states?
Yes, and not always for the better. Hawai'i generally works off its own vibe, but can't help being lured in from being in the mainland's shadow, although some say that has changed the dynamic of the islands somewhat. Some people want it to be their own private resort and will do everything in their power to make it their vision of "paradise", while many hold on to the cultural and social identities that make Hawai'i what it is.

7)How easy is it to travel back and forth from the mainland states?
If you have the money for a round trip plane ticket each time, it's easy.
THANK YOUUU! This is a wonderful help!
1)How is transportation without a car? Would it be easy to get around?
Hawaii's public transit system (http://www.thebus.org/) is pretty good, and goes almost everywhere. One of my pet peeves is that the bus stops often don't say what bus lines stop there, but that seems to be getting better and people are very helpful. It will also depend on where you live, living in town is going to make it much easier to get around.


2)If you order things online, are there any major places that don't ship to Hawaii?
Most places will ship to Hawaii, but there are exceptions, and there are places that tack on an extra fee (which can be large) or you won't be eligible for free shipping. A few I've personally encountered: Ikea won't ship, and I've never been able to get Overstock.com to ship, Amazon.com won't ship it's food things and the the free shipping for tools and some other items doesn't apply. It can vary widely, but with smaller companies I've had good luck calling them and asking them to ship in the flat rate priority boxes from the post office.


3)How easy would it be to get things like dairy replacements? (almond milk, etc.) nut powders-I guess I'm asking if there are alternative health food stores around?
There are a few small health food stores (Kokua Market (co-op), Umeke Market, Huckleberry Farms, and Down to Earth are the ones that come to mind) and Whole Foods recently opened one location and is opening two more on this island.

4)What are typical meals?
Typical meals vary, but the stereotypical meal is the "plate lunch" (http://www.dakine.net/hawaii/guide/oahu/oahu-platelunch.shtml). While finding things like brown rice in restaurants is much more common that on the mainland, many places don't place much emphasis on vegetables. But there is such a wide variety of food that you can find almost anything you want.

5)Even though there are many different cultures, are the people divided and stay within their own?(IE would you see Japanese and maybe Filipinos hanging out together as a normal thing?)
So many people in Hawaii are a mix of cultures, so the lines are often blurred. Of course there are divides, but for the most part people mix together, at least on ethnic backgrounds.

6)Is Hawaii affected a lot by current trends/music/styles/movies from the mainland states?
I'm not totally sure what you are trying to get at here. Hawaii has it's own culture/attitude/vibe. But yes, there are influences. There are probably some "scene" that aren't as popular/common here, but there's a very wide variety and we are exposed to everything (especially with the internet and tv and movies, etc.)

7)How easy is it to travel back and forth from the mainland states?
Depends on where you want to go. Most of the flights go to the west coast, so if you want to go somewhere else then you may have to connect. Prices can vary widely.
Thank you so much for responding and for the links!<3 This will help me alot.
PS- Darn, no Ikea. I'll have to stock up before I get there.
I, too, am moving to Oahu in December 2009 and I thought the same thing about Ikea LOL! I wanted to get an apartment and fill it up with Ikea furniture, but I guess not. Bummer.
How about I try that with proper HTML coding?! LOL

My husband and I are moving back in one year, as well. We lived there for a few years and ever since we moved we've missed it terribly. As soon as he is finished with his committment to the Marine Corps we're moving back, and I'm going to UHM for graduate school. I think we're finally ready to settle down, anyway. :-)

I'm following suit with juan70x above:

1)How is transportation without a car? Would it be easy to get around? The Bus provides an excellent means of getting around and is incredibly reliable and dependent. I used it for ages. Plus, it was relaxing to not have to stress about traffic and to be able to sit there and read Nylon or something in the meantime. http://www.thebus.org/

2)If you order things online, are there any major places that don't ship to Hawaii? Some places don't ship outside of CONUS (i.e. eluxury.com, VS - I think? and some others). Just keep an eye out and if all else fails, hit up Amazon or something. Usually, there is a way around the Hawaii shipping issue.

3)How easy would it be to get things like dairy replacements? (almond milk, etc.) nut powders-I guess I'm asking if there are alternative health food stores around? Super easy. Hawaii's fairly health conscious, so alternative co-op types are all over and health food stores, too. Even Safeway and such carries Almond Milk, Soy Milk, etc.

4)What are typical meals? LOL, like the gentleman above me said, there aren't typical meals down there. Hawaii is a total melting pot of cultures and food genres, etc. What I did find awesome was that you could get Spam musubi or a Spam & eggs breakfast combo at McDonalds. While I don't personally eat that stuff, it just shows you the different cultures and how businesses in Hawaii have adapted to better serve some of their patrons. :-)

5)Even though there are many different cultures, are the people divided and stay within their own?(IE would you see Japanese and maybe Filipinos hanging out together as a normal thing?) I think this is somewhat true. I lived in Kailua-town, so I can only speak for the Windward side of the island (we're planning to move to Manoa when we return though).

6)Is Hawaii affected a lot by current trends/music/styles/movies from the mainland states? Yes, but they still have their own unique trends that aren't seen anywhere else (for the most part).

7)How easy is it to travel back and forth from the mainland states? Very easy. Hawaiian Airlines is my preference for island to mainland travel. And usually (outside of this tumultuous economy), they have very reasonable and good priced fares. I used to be able to fly round trip from HNL to PDX for around $350.00.
Thank you! I hope you have a great transition back to Hawaii! Thank you for responding and the bit about the airline/prices is a great help!
I was just there for ten days home hunting (moving in January.) A word of caution - if you are going to work in Honolulu, the commute can be jacked up. My husband will be working downtown, so we got a condo downtown. Not cheap, but we were more concerned with the commute time eating into our need for time spent doing other fun things, or relaxing at home.

Food is no problem. All the same fast food restaurants you have here for the most part - Burger King, Jack in the Box, etc. Plenty of other restaurants, both national chains and local haunts. Great, great food at Yard House in Waikiki... just be prepared to take some home. I happen to love sushi, so it's a great place for me to live. You can easily find healthy food (the local plate lunch is not for the calorie conscious!) But Wahoo's Fish Taco has stuff without meat and vegan friendly beans and rice! Plenty of places I found catered to the health conscious.

Music is fun... lots of reggae and funky traditional and fusion island stuff. You can get other stations, but since I love reggae I tend to be pretty happy that I can scroll through the stations and the majority of them have something I totally dig.

Skip the grocery store if you can and shop Costco for food and household goods, and WalMart for trinkets for friends (if you have to... otherwise drive around the island to the non-tourist areas and shop from local vendors! Much preferred!)

Good luck!!!
Oh, you're very welcome, hon! I'm glad my experiences could hopefully be of assistance.

We're looking forward to the move back so much! Hawaii is definitely "home" for us.

Good luck with your transition as well!

Happy Holidays! xoxo
Why are you moving there?? I am horribly jealous.