We booked a trip: Will we be able to take it?

I missed the usual Monday post! We were out of town for a short weekend getaway and I forgot to schedule the post before we left. A recap of that short trip will be coming soon! For this week, I’d like to share about the first big trip we’ve planned since the pandemic began in 2020. 

The title is more appropriately, we rebooked a trip. The pandemic continues to affect most of the world, especially the United States. As a result, we grew increasingly uncertain about our chances to travel internationally in December. We decided to see what was available domestically. A fairly rare Hawaii condo was available. 

Our timeshare company allowed us to swap our condo in the Canary Islands for one in Hawaii without any change fees. We are now a little concerned about Hawaii’s 14 day quarantine period (which continues to get extended). Hawaii has announced that it will waive the quarantine requirement with a recent negative test. However the date for that program to begin continues to be pushed back. At the time of this writing, that date is October 1. But we’ve decided to take that one day at a time and assess the situation as it comes closer. 

The trip plan came together rather quickly. When I called our timeshare company to inquire about changing the location for our stay, they immediately confirmed availability. That, coupled with the waived change fee, motivated me to go ahead and book it. Within a few days after that, we found relatively good prices on flights, so we reserved airfare as well. Similarly, I spotted a good price on a rental car and reserved that. We splurged on an Airbnb on Oahu for a few days at the end of the trip. 

We’ve been to Hawaii previously, but only to Oahu. We are excited to check out the Big Island. Others have suggested Volcanoes National Park. We expect to do lots of hiking. We will be based in Kailua-Kona and plan to use that as a starting point to explore the island. We know that it will involve lots of driving and some early mornings. We’ve planned our rental car accordingly and don’t mind making little road trips daily. We will buy a styrofoam cooler and pack it with road trip snacks and a picnic lunch to avoid hunger. We anticipate coffee tastings and maybe a whale watching boat ride. Some friends recommended a couple of local breweries. Feel free to share your tips!

Because most of our trip will be in condos with a full kitchen, we expect to keep our food prices low. Many of the activities we plan to do will be low cost or free. A friend is likely coming along and will split some of the lodging costs. Also, this will be our only big trip this year due to the pandemic. Hawaii is rarely a budget-friendly trip, but this one should not be too bad. We’ll post a full cost breakdown after the trip. During this time when it doesn’t feel safe to wander too far from home, it felt great to plan and book a future trip. Travel is a wonderful thing to look forward to. 

Have you made any travel plans since the pandemic started? What will travel look like for you in the future? Are you dreaming of any specific trip? Have you had to cancel any travel plans due to the pandemic?

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