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Last updated: February 29, 2024 • Traveling Around the World

Things to Know Before Looking for Honolulu Movers

Moving to Honolulu, a tropical paradise with sun-kissed beaches and lush landscapes, is a dream for many. However, transitioning to life in this Hawaiian capital requires careful planning and understanding of the local nuances. Before you embark on this exciting journey, it’s crucial to be well-informed about the essentials, from the cost of living and housing options to understanding the unique island culture. 

With its diverse neighborhoods, vibrant cultural scene, and distinct geographical features, Honolulu presents a unique set of considerations for potential movers. This comprehensive guide is designed to help you navigate these considerations, ensuring a smooth and enjoyable relocation process.

When looking for Honolulu movers, it’s essential to have a detailed plan and clear expectations. With its island-specific logistics, the moving process in Honolulu can differ significantly from mainland experiences. You’ll need to consider factors such as transportation over water, local regulations, and moving services costs. Understanding the local climate, culture, and lifestyle is also essential in making your transition seamless. 

This guide aims to provide you with all the necessary information to prepare you for a successful move to Honolulu, covering everything from finding the right moving company to settling into your new island home. By the end of this article, you’ll be equipped with the knowledge to make your move to Honolulu as stress-free and enjoyable as possible.

What is the Cost of Living in Honolulu?

The cost of living in Honolulu, Hawaii, as of early 2024, reflects the unique challenges of island life, with expenses generally higher than in the mainland United States. Housing costs are a significant part of the expense, with the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in the city center around $2,176 per month and slightly lower at approximately $1,771 outside the city center. 

For those considering buying, the price per square foot for an apartment in the city center averages around $1,847.98, while it’s approximately $1,148.99 outside of the center. Utilities, including electricity, heating, cooling, water, and garbage for a standard apartment, can cost around $322 per month, with internet services adding an additional $68.42 on average.

Groceries and day-to-day living expenses also contribute to the high cost of living. Basic lunchtime meals in the business district average around $22. At the same time, a combo meal at a fast-food restaurant costs about $12. Regular grocery items such as a liter of milk cost around $1.81, and a dozen large eggs are priced at about $8. Transportation costs, such as a monthly public transit pass, are around $80. These high living costs are attributed to the island’s remote location and the associated expenses of shipping goods to Hawaii. 

Transportation in Honolulu

honolulu buss with people

Transportation in Honolulu, HI, as of 2024, is characterized by a mix of traditional and modern transit options catering to the needs of both residents and visitors. The Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation (HART) oversees the development of Oahu’s rail system, which is a significant addition to the city’s transportation network. 

The rail system, known as Skyline, is designed to alleviate ground-level congestion by providing an elevated transit option. The initial operating segment of Skyline covers 11 miles with nine stations, extending from East Kapolei to Aloha Stadium. Future expansions are planned, including a phase that will add stations to the Civic Center in Kakaako and, ultimately, the Ala Moana Transit Center.

In addition to the rail system, Honolulu’s transportation infrastructure includes TheBus, the city’s extensive bus service, and TheHandi-Van, a paratransit service for individuals with disabilities. The integration of these services aims to provide a comprehensive and efficient transportation network. For example, passengers can use their HOLO cards for seamless transfers between TheBus and Skyline. 

This multimodal approach, incorporating buses, rail, and other forms of personal transport like bicycles and scooters, reflects Honolulu’s commitment to improving connectivity and reducing traffic congestion in the city. As the rail system and other transportation initiatives continue to evolve, they are expected to impact commuting patterns and overall mobility within Honolulu.

Job Market and Employment Opportunities

As of 2024, the job market in Honolulu, HI, is dynamic and evolving, with a variety of opportunities across different sectors. The Hawaii Career Expo, hosted by the Honolulu Star-Advertiser at the Neal Blaisdell Center Exhibition Hall, is a significant event that brings together job seekers and top employers in the state. 

This expo features over 100 booths where candidates can directly interact with hiring managers from leading employers in various fields, such as law enforcement, construction, nursing, food service, tourism and hospitality, financial institutions, emergency services, retail, technology, and transportation. Such events are vital for both job seekers and employers, especially in a post-pandemic recovery phase where the job market is improving. However, employers still need help to fill vacancies.

Hawaii, including Honolulu, faces challenges in filling positions due to a disjointed system and a slow hiring process. Specific sectors, notably healthcare and public safety, have been particularly impacted. For instance, the Department of Public Safety has been dealing with high attrition rates among correctional officers and is actively trying to increase recruitment and training to backfill positions. 

In the healthcare sector, there’s a need for more nursing instructors and clinical staff. Different strategies are being employed to address these gaps, such as increasing the number of training cycles for incoming officers and hiring part-time clinical instructors in nursing. These efforts highlight the ongoing need for skilled professionals in various sectors and the opportunities available in Honolulu’s job market.

Safety in Honolulu

honolulu police car

The crime rate in Honolulu, Hawaii, presents a mixed picture as of 2024. With a crime rate of 36 per 1,000 residents, Honolulu stands out as having one of the highest crime rates in America compared to communities of all sizes. This rate indicates that the likelihood of becoming a victim of either violent or property crime in Honolulu is one in 28. 

Specifically, the city experiences a higher rate of violent crimes compared to most American communities of all population sizes. The chance of becoming a victim of a violent crime, such as armed robbery, aggravated assault, rape, or murder, in Honolulu is approximately 1 in 374, equating to a rate of 3 per one thousand inhabitants. 

Property crimes, including burglary, larceny over fifty dollars, motor vehicle theft, and arson, also contribute significantly to Honolulu’s overall crime rate. The city has a notably high rate of motor vehicle theft compared to national averages, with the odds of having a car stolen being one in 210. While Honolulu’s crime rate for violent and property crimes is high compared to many other U.S. communities, it is comparable to other cities of similar size.

This context is crucial for understanding the city’s safety landscape. Overall, the crime statistics suggest a complex situation where certain types of crime are more prevalent than others, and the crime rate varies depending on the specific area of the city.

Preparing for the Move

Preparing for a move to Honolulu, HI, involves considering several key aspects of island living. First and foremost, Honolulu’s cost of living is notably high, and adjusting your budget is essential to ensure a comfortable lifestyle in this beautiful city. The median home price in Honolulu is significantly above the national average, and rental costs are also high, reflecting the city’s high demand and limited housing supply. 

It’s essential to begin your housing search well before your move, considering your lifestyle preferences, commute times, and budget. Additionally, the local economy in Honolulu primarily revolves around tourism. Yet, there are opportunities in other sectors like healthcare, education, and government. For those moving without a job already lined up, starting your job search early is advisable; remote work has become a more viable option for many.

Transportation in Honolulu is an important consideration. While the city has a public transportation system known as TheBus, many residents find having a car essential, especially if living outside the city center or if your job requires commuting. However, be aware of the traffic congestion, particularly during rush hours. Walking or biking can be pleasant options for shorter distances, thanks to the city’s beautiful scenery and favorable climate.

If you plan to bring your car, know that shipping costs can be substantial, and specific regulations must be followed. Finally, integrating into the local community is key to enjoying island life to the fullest. Honolulu offers a range of leisure and entertainment options, from its rich arts and cultural scene to its diverse culinary delights and outdoor recreational activities.

Choosing the Right Moving Company

delivery man unloading boxes

Moving companies play a crucial role in facilitating smooth relocations, especially in a vibrant city like Honolulu, Hawaii. Let’s delve into why hiring a moving company is essential for a successful move:

Navigating the Island Terrain and Traffic:

  1. Honolulu, with its tropical climate and an average of 278 sunny days per year, attracts both residents and newcomers. However, the island’s unique geography can pose challenges during a move. Maneuvering large furniture and heavy boxes, from narrow streets to steep hills, can be daunting.
  2. Honolulu movers, armed with local expertise, know the ins and outs of Honolulu. They understand the best routes, shortcuts, and traffic patterns. Their familiarity with the island ensures efficient transportation of your belongings, saving you time and stress.

Cost-Effective and Efficient:

  1. Honolulu’s cost of living is 93% higher than the national average, making budget considerations crucial. A professional moving company helps optimize costs by providing accurate estimates based on distance, load size, and other factors.
  2. Whether you’re relocating to Honolulu or moving from the island, these companies offer a range of services, including packing, loading, unloading, and even piano or pool table moving. Their efficient handling ensures your possessions arrive intact, minimizing the risk of damage.

In summary, whether you’re moving into or out of Honolulu, relying on professional moving companies ensures a seamless transition, allowing you to focus on settling into your new home amidst the sun-filled days of this tropical paradise. 

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