So. You want to shop. You have saved up your pennies for many months now, and you plan to buy up big when you get to Oahu. You want to take carry on only. Can it be done?
I did it, on our last trip. I took 7kg of hand luggage. That was all. I had enough clothes for 3 days, plus the clothes I wore on the plane. I count arrival day as one day, by the way – you will want to change out of your plane clothes into something a lot more light and fresh for Hawaii as you will arrive early in the day after an all night flight.
I knew I would be heading to Ala Moana very early on to shop up a storm, and I knew I would be able to find enough clothes there to last me the 10 days we would be there, and then some.
Of course fate had another plan for us, and we ended up there for 21 days. There was only one thing about that which I regret and which caused me a bit of hassle and I will share that with you now to try and save you that same hassle. This tip applies whether you are travelling light, or travelling with more.
Beedoo Most Important Tip #1 –
If you are taking any kind of prescribed medication, make sure you take more than you actually need for the time you will be there. To be on the safe side, take as much as you would need for one full month. Sure, the travel insurance people helped out and I got scripts sent over by my doctor and got them filled, but I could have saved myself this drama by just taking a little more medication. And it would not have taken up much space or added much weight.
Beedoo Most Important Tip #2 –
Pretty much everything else you could need, you can easily buy in the USA, and for a lot cheaper than you can buy it in Australia. Here are three quick examples of this –
Nail scissors for $3.99 from the ABC store, with cute Hawaiian patterns on them, vs $8.99 upwards for boring nail scissors here in Australia. They have cute tweezers too, same price!
Macys underwear section has a lot of fantastic underwear for $2-3US – this would cost you a minimum of $10 in Australia. I got some Jockey camisoles for less than $5 each there as well. I picked up Genie Bras 2 for $19.98 at Walmart. I got 4 packs of Fruit of the Loom sports bras for $9.98. Walmart is open 24/7 behind Ala Moana, so you can do your shopping whatever time suits you, and they have a lot of great stuff at much more reasonable prices than Australia.
My main pair of sports shoes that I have been wearing the last couple of years are some hot pink Skechers which I picked up for $50 bucks or so. Those shoes I did find here in Australia, at the Skechers DFO clearance outlet – priced at $160. No kidding. You can get a good pair of Adidas running shoes for $29.99. There are brand name shoes to be found from $5 upwards at Ross Dress For Less.
So What Does Beedoo Pack?
If landing on Oahu and not going to any other islands –
3x tops (usually light weight cotton long or 3/4 sleeve shirts to protect arms from the sun)
2x shorts (again light weight cotton cargo pants with plenty of pockets)
1x long pants
2x camisole tops (for under the shirts, just how I roll)
5x underwear (3 for day, 2 for night)
1x night sleep wear
5x socks (3 for day, 2 for night – I like fresh very thin socks for wearing around the hotel room once you are done for the day, but thicker socks for daytime use)
1x tablet (for book reading) wrapped in pashmina
1x mobile phone
1x small camera
Charger for phone/tablet
Hair Comb (with hair bands wrapped around the base)
Small jewellery container
Slippahs (otherwise known as Thongs, to us Aussies, for feet, not underwear!)
On my next trip –
I am going to the Big Island for 3 days first, and shopping is not on the agenda for those days. So I do need to pack a bit more, and we have actually just done a practice pack. All the fun of packing without the reward of going on a trip? Fantastic idea. 🙂 But I did want to do it because we have such a small suitcase. I will write a post about this soon, I will also put together a post with everything I am putting in my carryon for this trip (and it is nearly identical to the list above) and also you can look forward to a post about what Ziploc bags can do for you.