SLOW DOWN THIS AIN'T THE MAINLAND (Local Road Rage And How To Deal):
During your visit, check out the bumper stickers on local’s cars. You will be sure to catch a glimpse of one that says: “Slow down this ain’t the mainland”. The funny thing is, these stickers are usually adorning cars and trucks that go flying by you—doing 80 in a 45 zone.
On one hand I’d like to say that I understand when tourists creep along on the roads below the speed limit … you don’t know the roads like we do and are probably just trying to find your way to wherever you’re going. Also, there are some really beautiful sights to see while driving, and the islands are still fresh enough for you to appreciate them.
On the other hand, we do know our way around the island and don’t really have the time to drive slow and take in the views. We’re heading to work and to pick up the kids. There are a lot of one lane roads on Maui, and one person plugging up the road is really a pain in the butt.
Don’t be intimidated by people on the road, but do have some respect. If you are lost or want to appreciate the beauty around you and it is safe to pull over, please do so.
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THE KAMA'AINA DISCOUNT:
Another thing that you will encounter on Maui is the “kama’aina discount”. Some activity companies, accommodations and restaurants offer a discount to locals with a Hawaii State driver’s license. This discount usually runs between 5-20% of normal prices.
Some visitors have a hard time with this. It doesn’t really seem fair, you know? Remember that under no circumstances are you paying more than the regular price, just the normal.
The kama’aina discount started as a way to draw in local business during the slow season. Also, tourism and the things that go with it is the biggest “business” in Maui…we’re surrounded by it daily, so it’s nice to be able to participate in the fun (while still being able to pay the rent) once in a while.
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JAWS AND OTHER THINGS THAT BITE:
I still hear the theme music of Jaws when I go to the beach. Man, that movie scared me like nothing else…it drove my parents crazy. Here I was, a tan little local kid, petrified of swimming in the ocean.
Naturally, I got over it. Well, almost over it. Here are the facts: Your chances of getting attacked by a shark are slim. About six million people get into Hawaiian waters countless times a year. According to the Shark Research Program at the Florida Museum of Natural History, from 1820-2001 there were 101 reported shark attacks in Hawaii. Twenty percent of these proved fatal.
So while you probably won’t become shark bait, it is always best to take precautionary measures.
The Hawaii Shark Task Force recommends the following to help reduce your chances of a shark attack: don’t swim alone, swim in guarded areas, avoid swimming at dusk, don’t bleed into the ocean (not even a little, ladies), avoid murky waters, don’t wear brightly colored jewelry or highly contrasting colors (buh-bye hot pink and orange bikini and bling-bling), don’t swim if sharks are known to be present (signs will usually be posted if the State is aware of the sightings), be alert if turtles and fish are fleeing the area, and remove speared fish from the ocean promptly (if you’re spear fishing).
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