DansMeals: Hawaii For The Kosher Traveler. Part 3: Maui

DansMeals: Hawaii For The Kosher Traveler:
Part 1: General Info And The Island Of Oahu
Part 2: The Big Island of Hawaii
Part 3: Maui
Part 4: Kauai (Upcoming)

Related posts:
-Which Miles To Use To Fly To Hawaii?
-DansMeals: Los Angeles For The Kosher Traveler

Previous trip reports with pictures:
-Hawaii Trip Notes: Oahu (2009)
-Hawaii Trip Notes: Kauai (2009)
-Traveling To Hawaii…With A 5 Month Old (2011)
-
The Hawaiian Islands (2011)
And one of these days I really ought to write up a trip report on Maui and The Big Island.

DDF forum threads:
-Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?
-Big Island Of Hawaii Master Thread
-Kauai Master Thread
-Maui Master Thread
-Oahu Master Thread
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The 2nd most popular destination that people booked with the Delta glitch was Hawaii. More details can be found via the trip reports above, but this will give a quick overview of the options.

If you’re flying to Hawaii in coach on the Delta glitch with your family you should look into the Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express which gets a free checked bag (a $50 round-trip value per person per trip) for up to 9 people on an itinerary with the primary cardholder!

The revealed series of books are absolutely required reading if you are going to Hawaii. They read like a novel and are unlike any other guidebook you’ve seen before.  They have great recommendations for everything there is to do on the islands, from private beaches to the best hikes. It’ll be the best money you spend on your entire trip:
-Oahu Revealed
-Big Island of Hawaii Revealed
-Maui Revealed
-Kauai Revealed

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Maui: A beautiful island with lots of activities that’s less touristy than Oahu. Ferry service available to Molokai and Lanai islands.

Kosher traveler info:

Please read Part 1/Oahu for tips on interisland flights, how much time to spend on an island, bringing kosher food from home, ordering kosher food from Oahu, gear that you’ll want in Hawaii, and whether you may have to keep 2 days of shabbos. See Part 2/Big Island of Hawaii for more kosher food options for Maui as well.

-Chabad of Maui can provide homemade shabbos meals with 2 weeks advance notice. There is no shabbos minyan on Maui but they do attempt to have a minyan on Monday, Thursdays, and when someone needs to say kaddish.  If you want a minyan for shabbos look at the previous posts on Oahu and The Big Island.

-The Hyatt Regency Maui has a kosher menu that you can order from their restaurants or from room service with advance notice.  Click here to download the kosher menu. In the past I was able to get kosher breakfast comped as a Diamond member…go for the blintzes (they are cholov yisroel) over the eggs.  The beef corn dogs are a great deal as you get the whole package of 5 S’Better corn dogs for just $9 and you can request to have them served in one of the hotel restaurants or brought to your room.  The box of corn dogs costs more uncooked from my local grocery store…go figure!

-Costco (Kahului), Safeway (Kahului, Kihei and Lahaina), Whole Foods (Kahului), Mana Foods (Paia), and Lahaina Farms (Lahaina) all carry kosher foods. Mana Foods is my personal favorite of the bunch thanks to their large selection and relatively low prices.

Cars:

On Maui there is no need for 4WD.  If you can fit into a convertible that is definitely the car of choice.

Chabad of Hawaii has passed on a corporate rate for rentals at Enterprise or National in Hawaii that provides better rates, waives underage fees, and waives different location drop-off fees.
The company name is Hawaii Kosher Weddings. The contract number is XZ36016 and the pin is HAW

You can also bid for car rentals on Hotwire or Priceline that can save you a fortune!

Buy gas at Costco where’s it’s cheaper than at most stations on the islands.

Hotels:

Hotels can be found in North Maui (Ka’anapali) and South Maui (Wailea), both are on the sunny west coast.

If you’re traveling with a family in Hawaii it’s definitely worth looking into renting a private home or condo from sites like VRBO , Home Away , or airbnb.
Before I was married I nabbed $150 tickets for my family to go to Hawaii and we stayed at a great condo in Kihei found on VRBO. There are definitely many pluses and minuses of a private condo/house versus a hotel.

You can also bid for hotels on Hotwire or Priceline that can save you a fortune!

-The Sheraton Maui Resort is an SPG category 5 property (12K-16K Starpoints per night or 9.6K-12.8K per night on a 5 night reservation) in North Maui.  There is great snorkeling by Black Rock in front of the hotel.

-The Westin Maui Resort is an SPG category 5 property (12K-16K Starpoints per night or 9.6K-12.8K per night on a 5 night reservation) right next door to the Sheraton.

The Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express earns 10K bonus Starpoints for spending $1 and 15K bonus Starpoints for $5,000 in 6 months which would give you a total of 30,000 Starpoints.

-The Hyatt Regency Maui is category 5 hotel (20K Hyatt or Chase points per night or just 10K points+$125 per night). Very nice grounds, pools, and even parrots and swans. But you’ll want to walk up the path to the Sheraton for a better beach. Kosher dining menu is available. Service can be mixed though.

-The Hyatt Andaz Wailea is a category 6 hotel (25K points/night or 12.5K points+$150 per night). It opened a few months ago and has no kosher menu. They also charge a whopping $25 per meal per person just to heat up your food while other hotels do it for a fraction of that or even for free…not cool!

-The Grand Wailea costs anywhere from 54K-90K Hilton points per night (20K Starpoints transfers into 25K Virgin Atlantic which transfers into 50K Hilton points. 25K AMEX points with the current Hilton transfer bonus or 25K Chase or AMEX points transfers into 25K Virgin Atlantic which transfers into 50K Hilton points)

-The Ritz Carlton Kapalua is a Marriott/Ritz Carlton Tier 3 property (50K Chase or Marriott points per night or 40K per night on a 5 night reservation).

The Chase Sapphire Preferred earns 40,000 Ultimate Rewards bonus points for spending $3,000 plus 5,000 points for adding a free additional user.  It offers 2.14 points per dollar on all travel and dining expenses and has no foreign exchange fees. The Chase Ink Plus and Ink Bold each earn 50,000 bonus points for spending $5,000 in 3 months, offer up to 5 points per dollar spent, have no foreign exchange fees, and come with free lounge passes. Chase points can transfer into Hyatt or Marriott points instantly at a 1:1 ratio if you or your spouse holds a Sapphire Preferred, Ink Bold, or Ink Card card.  Chase also has a Hyatt card which gives 2 free nights for spending $1,000 though the bonus categories on the Chase Ultimate Rewards cards like Sapphire, Freedom, and Ink are generally much more lucrative than the Hyatt card.  Bear in mind that Ultimate Rewards points don’t expire and are transferable while the Hyatt nights must be completed within 1 year and are officially non-transferrable.

Activities:

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-The Road to Hana is an epic drive that offers impossibly lush scenery, dozens of waterfalls, black sand beaches, and more.  Kids prone to motion sickness may not appreciate the curvy drive cut through the side of the mountain…bring a bag!

Start this road early, try to leave your hotel by 7 in the morning so that you have time to make frequent stops to gawk at waterfalls, go on amazing hikes, and make it back so that you’re not driving on the road after dark. A convertible is perfect for this drive. Remember that the point of this drive isn’t to get to Hana, there’s nothing there!  So don’t tailgate the car ahead of you and let the car behind you pass so you can drive slow and take in the heavenly scenery.

Don’t miss the 3 bears waterfall (and hike closer!), Wailua Iki waterfall hike, rainbow trees, the Nahiku road turn-off to the ocean, black-sand beach, venus pool, etc. Take a picture of you with the road cutting into the side of the mountain behind you. The Seven sacred pools are part of Haleakala National Park, so save your receipt to go up to the top of Haleakala for free over the following 3 days.
Don’t turn around, even a regular car can complete the entire loop and it gives you an entirely different perspective with amazing windswept views instead of seeing the same stuff again. The drive does get a bit more difficult on the loop around, but it’s nothing too bad.
-In North Maui don’t miss the Dragon’s Teeth, Nakalele blowhole, and the Olivine Pools. It takes a hike to get to both the blowhole and the olivine pools, but they’re both awesome and you’re sure to get amazing pictures!
-Whale watching boatride can be awesome if a whale breaches near your boat.
-Haleakala: Catch an amazing sunrise or sunset and go on amazing hikes in the park. Bring a sweater!
-Downtown Lahaina is fun to walk around, especially at night. The Warren and Annabelle’s magic show in Lahaina gets rave reviews.
-The Iao Needle is good enough for a picture though you don’t need to do it.
-Maui has incredible snorkeling and diving. It’s criminal to not try snorkeling at least once. There are great places to snorkel south of Wailea or at Black Rock by the Sheraton in North Maui.
-You can also take a snorkeling boatride out to Molokini where the snorkeling is legendary and the visibility and water clarity is incredible. Go very early in the morning.
-Ferry service and flights are available to Molokai and Lanai. Those islands are said to feel like the Hawaii of old though I haven’t yet made it out there.
-Jetski, snorkel, dive, kayak, stand-up-paddling, surf, kite-board, parasail, windsurf, you name it, you can do it in the waters off Maui.
-Other activity ideas: ATV, zipline, helicopter tour, hang-gliding (powered and traditional), golf, etc.
-Find a local fruit stand or farmers market and skip the grocery stores.  The fruit in Hawaii is just amazing, don’t leave without trying locally grown Maui Gold Pineapple, passion fruit, papaya, mango, lychee, mangosteen, rambutan, etc.  They just taste so much better in Hawaii and they’re much cheaper at farmers markets.  Beware that you can’t bring any fruit home with you besides for Pineapple or Coconut.

And don’t forget to relax too ;)

When we were in Maui last time with Rafi we took a sunset picture session on the beach with Wailea Photography.  The pictures were stunning and many hang in our house today.  If you mention DansDeals then you’ll also save $50 off the prices listed on the site. This isn’t a paid ad, I just really loved the pictures we got.  We’ve taken photo shoots in Buenos Aires and Banff as well and I find that taking a photo shoot from a vacation spot is far better than any other silly souvenir from the trip.

Have more tips? Hit the comments and share your thoughts!

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45 Responses to “DansMeals: Hawaii For The Kosher Traveler. Part 3: Maui”

  1. Nate Says:
    1

    How do u pronounce this islands name?

    ReplyReply
  2. Dan Says:
    2

    @Nate:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vv_UCXTx-E8

    ReplyReply
  3. mike Says:
    3

    Dan what do u recommend in maui the Sheraton or the Westin?

    ReplyReply
  4. Ari Says:
    4

    Hi Dan, thanks for these posts! They are super timely (we are going to Kauai and Maui Jan. 26th). Even better, I had no idea about the Hyatt’s kosher food and we just so happen to be staying there coincidentally, so major props for that!

    I had a question about activities – which activities/tours would you recommend booking in advance vs. while we are there?

    ReplyReply
  5. jim Says:
    5

    @Dan

    Our baby is not born yet due in late Jan, After he is born and age 3 months old in Late April, We are planning a trip to Maui for 5 days & than to Buffalo, NY for 4 days.
    The problem is finding award tickets. I have AAdvantage, United miles, US airways, Virgin atlantic miles. We have plen of them.
    AA.com is mostly showing 75k one way standard biz only. Even if there is saver biz for 37.5k one way, it has 2 to 3 stops which I don’t like for infant. United has one stop biz class flights but very hard to find both ways.

    What you think we should do? Is keeping a 3 month old infant on 9 hour flight on biz class seat on lap is manageble?? I am thinking of staying at Hyatt regency Maui in club room for 27k points a night. But Hyatt website is only showing standard room for Hyatt & the Andaaz. I like the club becos of free breakfast and better room.
    Which one has better location? I thought of renting an SUV with my UR points but it won’t provide primary coverage right? I would like to use my miles or points for rental but I am concerned with lack of primary coverage.
    Please give me advice and tips

    ReplyReply
  6. dov Says:
    6

    we were in kauai last month-thanks dan.

    WHAT WORKED OUT GREAT WAS
    we shlepped a NINJA crockpot that we purchased at costco in NY($120-$40=$80) and it was fantastic. we were able to heat up our frozen meals (it has an oven mode) that we bought at our favorite NY restaurant and ate like a king. we also made a cholunt for shabbos.

    we had some kosher food in the Hyatt-some was good some was ok.

    ReplyReply
  7. Chana Says:
    7

    I didn’t know that the Andaz in Wailea charges $25 to heat up food. We will be staying there for 2 nights. I ordered food from Pomegranite- are there any other options for heating up food while staying at the Andaz?

    ReplyReply
  8. Dan Says:
    8

    @mike:
    I haven’t stayed at either but the Sheraton has slightly better reviews.

    @Ari:
    Most stuff can be booked while you’re there.
    What are you thinking of doing?

    @jim:
    Holding an infant for 9 hours is tough unless you can secure a bassinet seat.

    I don’t think the Andaz has a club.

    No insurance coverage if you rent with UR.

    @dov:
    Cool.
    Which meals were good from the Hyatt and which weren’t?

    @Chana:
    Buy a toaster oven or hot plate?
    Find a hotel with a cheaper food heating option?

    ReplyReply
  9. dina Says:
    9

    Thanks for the informative post!

    ReplyReply
  10. dov Says:
    10

    ari,
    in kauai we took a flying lesson on a 2 seater “trike” mechanical hanglider with a company called birds in paradise. we wanted to take see the Napali coast and this was our chosen method. we chose this over a helicopter ride.
    it was pricey, but of similar cost to a helicopter ride and pretty cool. if you are interested you may want to book in advance.

    ReplyReply
  11. jim Says:
    11

    if I book class seats for the 2 of us to Hawaai, will the airline , say united have bassinet for infant?
    The flight to Maui has a stop in LAX or SFO. 2 hour layover is better than non stop flight right?

    Sadly I don’t find any return award flight to ORD in first week of May 2014. I am not finding saver biz class award flights.

    ReplyReply
  12. Max Says:
    12

    Dan, do you know under which hechsher is the Hyatt food under? Would love to go if I can rely on this supervision.

    ReplyReply
  13. Meshulam Says:
    13

    How much nicer is the beach at Andaz than hyatt regency?

    ReplyReply
  14. Howaii Says:
    14

    what months are good to go? when to avoid?

    ReplyReply
  15. DanR NYC Says:
    15

    Dan, I have been browsing AA award travel to HNL, via JFK or LGA. I find flights for 22,500 each way, but I am not certain if that is a good deal or not (some legs show Hawaiian Air too). I know that it is better than $, but I would burn all the AA miles I have (4 passengers). Your 2 cents (sense) is welcomed and appreciated.

    ReplyReply
  16. BBPAPA Says:
    16

    Reality Check for all you young ones out there.

    I spent my honeymoon at the Hyatt Regency Maui 20+ yrs ago-I wore my kippah during my stay and at one point one of the locals told me they had seen a documentary on PBS about “us” people but didn’t really understand what “kosher people” were.

    ReplyReply
  17. Yitz Says:
    17

    @dan @chana I stayed at the Andaz in November and they did not Charge to warm up the meals and bring them up to the room

    ReplyReply
  18. Dan Says:
    18

    @dov:
    Those do look amazing, the safety record scares me a bit though.

    @jim:
    Depends on plane, call and ask.

    @Max:
    It’s on the letter in the post. Contact them for more info.

    @Meshulam:
    Never been to the Andaz.
    By the Hyatt you can walk for a couple minutes up the path behind the hotels for nice beaches.

    @Howaii:
    Hawaii is great all year round.

    @DanR NYC:
    22.5K is peak, off-peak it’s 17.5K.

    @Yitz:
    Interesting.
    Did you contact them beforehand about that?
    I wonder if it’s changed as this is the letter they just sent me:
    http://i.dansdeals.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/Kosher-Letter.doc

    ReplyReply
  19. Yitz Says:
    19

    @dan I did inquire before I went and they told me that there were would not be a fee. And there was not. Its possible that they did change the rule.

    ReplyReply
  20. Dan Says:
    20

    @Yitz:
    I guess it’s a new thing then.

    ReplyReply
  21. yitzie Says:
    21

    don’t the t and c of rental contracts state that u cant take the car around the entire loop of the island as its not paved well? still u shouldn’t turn around and risk being messed if something goes wrong?

    ReplyReply
  22. YYZ Says:
    22

    @mike: If you are going with kids, definitely the hyatt. Lots of entertainment for children like waterslides, kiddie pool even a camp if you want.

    ReplyReply
  23. minyan Says:
    23

    Anyone going to be on maui 2/15. We are trying to make a minyan already have 5

    ReplyReply
  24. maxie Says:
    24

    Dan, what do you mean that you can’t bring any of the fruit home? Is that a legal thing or practical?

    ReplyReply
  25. stg Says:
    25

    Dan, what happened to the Fairmont? How does it compare to the hotels you’ve listed?

    ReplyReply
  26. Ramsey, World's Foremost Authority Says:
    26

    Dan, It should be noted that all those recent shark attacks were in the area of Wailea and to the south. Snorkel at your own risk.

    ReplyReply
  27. Ramsey, World's Foremost Authority Says:
    27

    @stg Was just at Fairmnot in Sept., it was awesome!!! Just below the Four Seasons in quality, which ain’t to shabby. Be sure to get the free nites via Fairmont CC. All rooms are suites that are huge.

    ReplyReply
  28. ari d Says:
    28

    DO YOUR RESEARCH which boat to take out to Molokini bec depending on where in the crescent the boat takes you, the amounts of fish vary greatly.
    Also, Hyatt Maui was SUPER nice about keeping a suitcase of food in their industrial freezer. We grilled on the beach several nights. about 5 minutes walk along the beach going left (when facing the beach) is a secluded (at night) area to grill with park benches.

    ReplyReply
  29. ari d Says:
    29

    also, at the hyatt, you can request kosher food at the luau

    ReplyReply
  30. mo Says:
    30

    When do the maui revealed books generally come out? I am going in August and would wait to purchase the newest version.

    ReplyReply
  31. Chana Says:
    31

    @ari d: Have you used a particylar company that you would recommend? I am looking to make reservations. Thanks

    ReplyReply
  32. SDG Says:
    32

    I’m planning to be there. Not sure which hotel yet. Could you please let me know if you get a minyan.

    ReplyReply
  33. minyan Says:
    33

    @sdg hoping to be near the hyatt as it seems thats where most people will be. I spoke tob the shliach there he said he will try to help arrange it and would join us.

    ReplyReply
  34. minyan Says:
    34

    @sdg how can I get in touch with you?

    ReplyReply
  35. Anon Says:
    35

    Which hotels are you all booking?

    Is June – Aug too hot to be there?

    ReplyReply
  36. ari d Says:
    36

    @chana
    i dont remeber which one i used but read the maui revealed section on it. it tells you the the right side (i think)has the most fish. just make sure to ca

    ReplyReply
  37. Hanna Says:
    37

    @minyan:

    @minyan
    My husband and I will be staying at the Hyatt the Shabbos of 2/15, please let me know if there will be a minyan going on and where/time. I know that someone on the Hawaii forum was also trying to set something up, but I never heard back from them…I think the name was Elgnt if that helps…

    ReplyReply
  38. Anonymous Says:
    38

    @ari d: Which snorkling place is good to molokini???

    ReplyReply
  39. JohnD Says:
    39

    @ari d: which snorkeling tour is good to molokini in maui

    ReplyReply
  40. Ari Says:
    40

    @Dan,

    Mainly the ones we had questions about were Road to Hana tours (no way I am driving that :) ) and combined Kauai tours.

    ReplyReply
  41. ah Says:
    41

    Being told by the Sheraton that they charge $25 per meal for heating up food. Is there anyway to get them to waive this fee?

    ReplyReply
  42. SDG Says:
    42

    Thanks. My email is sdgissinger@gmail.com

    ReplyReply
  43. e&nThankYouDan Says:
    43

    Does the Maui hyatt have any accommodations for electric room keys on Shabbos?

    ReplyReply
  44. Miri Says:
    44

    @E&nThankyoudan
    For the electric room keys, bring some duck tape. put it over the key hole and your door will stay open, that’s the only way around it.

    ReplyReply
  45. zee Says:
    45

    @mike
    Definitely the westin, just stayed there and met people who left the sheraton to the westin. I walked past the sheraton and it looks old :( the westin was beautiful!

    ReplyReply

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