Moving can be such an ordeal that it can keep people living in the same town they were born in. But if you dare to venture forth, paradise awaits! This guide aims to help anyone considering a move to Hawaii. If you are methodical and plan your move, it can actually be a smooth and relatively easy process. We have broken the moving process into a series of steps leading to a successful arrival in Hawaii.

Step 1: Research
Think about what you really need to bring with you. What is essential, and what is optional. If cost is not an issue then you just need to think of how many boxes you will need and how many oversize items you will need to accommodate. If you are like most people and have a budget to work with then we usually recommend to just bring the essentials. Hawaii’s mild climate doesn’t warrant the need for most winter clothes. The humid climate here doesn’t work well for many luxury types of furniture, so think twice before bringing your leather sofa set. But this does depend on where in Hawaii you plan to live. Waimea can be chilly and you may actually want more cold-weather clothes. Will you have AC in your house? If so then you have more flexibility with the furniture you bring and won’t have to worry about mildew’s effects.

Moving a car? This should only be a realistic consideration if it is a newer car (no more than 5 years old) or if you really like and trust the reliability of your car. Shipping from the West Coast of the Mainland US costs around $1000, with shipping from other states an additional fee. So think twice before just shipping your car, there are quite a few car dealerships here and you can get a decent selection of both new and used. Though be warned, prices of new and used cars here tend to be significantly more than those on the Mainland, partly due to shipping fees and partly due to supply and demand.

Do you have pets? If so you need to read the Animal Quarantine Information page to get the whole picture there. It can be costly and time-consuming to go through the process, but like us, our pets are our family and well worth it. Just do your research and you’ll be fine and your pets will be happy here too.

Step 2: Get Moving Quotes
Call some local moving companies and get a quote. Prices will vary depending on how much packing you plan to do yourself, and if you want door-to-door or full service. If you have a tight budget but still have a good amount of stuff to ship, you can arrange to use a container, they come in ranges from 20 feet to 40 feet in length. You can have them delivered to your home and you can pack them yourself. Full-service moving companies can do everything from packing to loading to shipping to unloading at your new house, but you will pay a premium for this service. If you are like most of us and don’t have the time to do everything yourself and have a job waiting for you, then the convenience is a necessity. We can recommend a few moving companies that have a good track record here:

Step 3: Set a Timeline for Your Move
Once you decide on a moving company, they will give you a rough time estimate, so you need to factor in your job, family, and any other time constraints into the picture to come up with an estimated date of departure. We can help you get started looking for airlines to Hawaii, just click here for our airline information page. You will want to pack just enough to last the time that it takes your personal goods to arrive in Hawaii. If you are shipping a container, it can take from 1-3 weeks while cars can take 3-6 weeks.

Step 4: Plan Your Arrival
Accommodation: Depending on your particular circumstance, you may need to rent a hotel, bed and breakfast, condo, or some kind of accommodation to use until you find a long-term rental or a home to purchase. If you are planning to buy a home, we can help with this part of your move. We have extensive experience with local businesses and can give you a list of reliable options if this is what you need.

Transportation: If you ship your vehicle you may be waiting a little while for its arrival. The alternatives are to rent a car, buy a car, or make do with public transportation. Car rentals can be quite affordable if you book well in advance.

Setting up Utilities: These details may be small compared to the other concerns, but are essential to your comfort. These are all things you can do before you move in most circumstances. You should first think about your requirements as far as Internet, Cable TV, County Water, Gas, and Electricity before picking up the phone. Hawaii has very diverse living arrangements, which range from full county utilities to completely off-grid with water catchment, solar systems, and propane appliances.

Step 5: The Move is Complete
Now you unpack, relax, and look for ways to enjoy your beautiful new tropical island home!