Many people travel to Maui annually and we welcome them back like ohana (family). For some it will be their first trip to the islands. For everyone, it’s a trip across the ocean to paradise, but one that is a little more complicated because of COVID-19. For those that do take the journey to Maui in the next few months, it may be an experience of a lifetime, to see Maui like it hasn’t been for decades.
Right now, Maui is blissfully uncrowded. Nearshore reefs have had a breather to rejuvenate. The sweet-scented air is more clear than ever. There is plenty to do outdoors, in fresh air, with safe social distancing.
With Hawaii putting procedures in place so that those ready to get out and travel can avoid quarantine as of October 15, there are a few things to consider.
No matter what your personal views are on mask wearing, we do ask that you follow local regulations on masks, which currently includes wearing one in most indoor public spaces.
The choice to take a trip right now is a personal one. Hopefully this information will help you mitigate risk and enhance your comfort level so you can have a memorable vacation.
Here are some tips on planning your Maui vacation during COVID-19
- Read up on restrictions
Stay up to date on state and local recommendations and restrictions, and check back for potential changes regularly.
As of this writing, Maui County is at the lowest risk level (green) for Covid-19. However, also consider other states or cities you may be traveling through on your way to the islands.
Make sure and read through these steps well before traveling to Maui.
- Check in with your doctor
Many people have deferred regular check-ups during COVID-19. Make sure the entire family is up to date on their doctor visits. Ask you doctor about any specific precautions you should take based on your personal medical history.
The CDC recommends most people get a flu vaccination, as this common malady can mimic coronavirus.
- Check Cleaning Policies
Not all accommodations are the same when it comes to cleaning. For your health and safety, Destination Maui Vacation’s trained housekeepers carry out consistent cleaning measures that meet or exceed all CDC guidelines. This includes:
- A waiting period after guest departure;
- Enhanced hygiene, personal protective gear and guidelines for cleaning personnel;
- A two-step approach for high-touch surfaces — cleaning, then disinfecting. This includes often overlooked items like light switches and remotes;
- Following CDC recommendations for cleaning low-touch surfaces. Upholstered surfaces disinfected with an aerial application;
- Updated procedures for handling and laundering towels, linens, and other laundry, including double sheeting top layer of bedding or providing a washable comforter or duvet cover;
- Use of EPA registered disinfecting products.
- Consider location and crowds when booking accommodations
Here is where staying in a Destination Maui Vacations resort really shines.
Social Distancing. Condominiums have fewer common spaces and interior living spaces are larger than hotel rooms, meaning people have more space to themselves.
Sanitation. Since condominiums are individually owned, they or their management companies can direct customized cleaning and sanitation. Check ins can be done electronically. Keys are typically delivered without human interaction, with many door locks going keyless.
Kitchens. Since all Destination Maui condos have full kitchens, you can not only save money by cooking meals in the condo, it’s also safer. Many people still want to avoid crowds for a while, including limiting dining out. Plus there is nothing nicer than eating al fresco on your lanai overlooking the ocean.
Space and Value. In a condo, you get more space for a lower price. If you were to get a two-bedroom condo, you could split the costs with others while having the space to live independently. That includes private bathrooms and bedrooms, plus a larger living area than a hotel room.
Character. Condos each have their own design style reflecting the island. Rather than a couple of stock photos on a hotel room site, we show you detailed photos of each room in the condo so you can pick one that matches your taste, with no surprises.
Longer Stays. With the space and comforts of home, as well as fun amenities such as outdoor grills, pools and more, a 10-day stay or longer is quite a treat. And, you will spend a pile less than the same length of stay in a hotel, while being safer in our new COVID reality.
Check out all 13 of our resorts, and plan your future beach vacation.
- Bring a COVID-19 Travel-Essentials Bag
If you want to be extra cautious, a TSA-compliant pandemic essentials bag can help minimize COVID-19 risk, experts say. Stock your pandemic essentials well in advance, so that you don’t have to hunt for items on Maui that may be in short supply. Staples should include:
- Hand sanitizers (2 oz or less)
- Face masks- note airlines are now requiring specific types of masks
- Travel pack of disinfecting wipes
- Health insurance cards and extra prescription medication
- A thermometer
- Latex gloves (for one-time use in public spaces)
- Hand soap (2 oz or less)
- Enough snacks so that you do not have to eat at airport restaurants
- A change of clothes and a washable laundry bag. You can shed your airplane clothes after landing and toss them in the laundry in your condo
Know your airline’s in-flight policies like mask requirements and whether they leave a middle seat open. This article has a good chart, but note airline COVID-19 policies change frequently.
Remember to download boarding passes to your phone and pay for checked bags in advance to reduce touch points in the airport.
- Plan Maui outdoor activities
While the island is waking up from its tourism break, you might still find some activities closed or curtailed. However, there is plenty to do in the natural environment, including going for a hike, taking an amazing road trip to the remote town of Hana, or driving up a 10,000ft volcano to the summit of Haleakala. There are miles of sugar-sand beaches to explore or relax by the pool. Since Destination Maui Vacation condos feature full kitchens, you can dine alfresco on your lanai, or grill outside while watching waves lap the shore.
Boating recreation is a good activity to consider. The state limited the number of passengers by half during COVID-19, allowing plenty of room to spread out on larger snorkel and scuba diving vessels.
With a little precaution you can have an amazing experience on Maui in the coming months, so start planning!