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Hawaii on a Budget: Why Vacation Rentals Might Be Your Perfect Match

Hawaiian sunset through leaves

A Hawaiian getaway is a dream for many, but the allure of the islands often comes with a hefty price tag, prompting savvy travelers to explore alternative accommodation options. For cost-conscious choices, Hawai’i vacation home cost savings are a solid choice compared to traditional hotels. Let’s compare two options in  Kailua-Kona, where the comparison between renowned hotels and a 2-bed/2-bath fully equipped vacation home reveals surprising disparities in costs. We’ll also review additional considerations, highlighting the spaciousness, privacy, and unique amenities that make vacation rentals an enticing option. Join us on this exploration of how opting for a vacation home not only stretches your dollar further but also promises a more personalized and immersive Hawaiian experience.

Hawai’i vacation home cost savings

  • If, like many travelers, your first consideration is cost, let’s look at one cost comparison of a few brand name hotels vs a 2 bed/2 bath fully equipped vacation home both in Kailua-Kona. A simple search on a popular booking website gives us these results. 
  • Consider a vacation where four adults share a double queen hotel room during the first week of March. The price range is between $2493 and $4796, exclusive of taxes and fees. This also excludes the hotels in the $6000+ range for the week. 
  •  In contrast, opting for a 2-bed/2-bath fully equipped condo has a total price of $1884.
  • Remember, the booking sites won’t show you all the additional charges like taxes until the last step. A local vacation home rental company may also have additional discounts.


Other Considerations

  • More Space:
    • Vacation rentals often provide more square footage than hotel rooms, giving you ample space to move around comfortably.
    • This extra space is particularly beneficial for families with children who need room to play or for larger groups traveling together.
  • Privacy:
    • Vacation rentals offer a level of seclusion that hotels may not provide. You won’t have to worry about noisy neighbors in adjacent rooms or disruptions from hotel activities.
    • Enjoy the freedom of having the entire property to yourselves, allowing for a more intimate and private vacation experience.
  • Cost-Effectiveness:
    • Renting a vacation home can be more cost-effective, especially for longer stays or when traveling with a group. The ability to prepare your own meals in a fully-equipped kitchen can significantly reduce food expenses.
    • Many vacation rentals have laundry facilities, saving on additional costs related to laundry services or packing extra clothes.
  • Home-like Feel:
    • Vacation rentals often emulate a home-like atmosphere with living rooms, dining areas, and bedrooms, providing a sense of comfort and familiarity.
    • Enjoy the convenience of a fully furnished space, often including amenities like a TV, entertainment systems, and sometimes even books or board games.
  • Unique Amenities:
    • Vacation rentals frequently come with unique amenities that set them apart from hotels. This can include private pools, hot tubs, game rooms, and outdoor spaces for barbecues or relaxation.
    • Tailor your vacation experience by choosing a rental that aligns with your interests and preferences: a beachfront property, a cabin in the mountains, or a city loft.
  • Things to Consider:
    • Location: Ensure the vacation rental is conveniently located relative to your planned activities and attractions.
    • Booking Platforms: Use reputable vacation rental websites or agencies to secure your accommodation and read reviews from previous guests.
    • Communication: Establish clear communication with the property owner or manager for a smooth check-in/out process and to address any concerns during your stay.


  • Consider the nature of your trip, the size of your group, and your specific preferences.
  • Evaluate the overall costs, including hidden fees and cleaning charges.
  • Assess the level of service you desire, as hotels may offer amenities like daily housekeeping.
  • Balance the convenience of hotel services with the independence and unique experience of vacation rentals.

Ultimately, choosing between a vacation rental and a hotel hinges on your priorities. Although cost isn’t the only factor, a vacation home can save on costs as well as offering a personalized and tailored experience for your Hawaiian adventure.


Click here to see the property highlighted in this article.