Living in Hawaii

The following is a basic guide for Faculty planning to live in Hawaii at BYU-Hawaii. For more information about Laie please CLICK HERE.

Housing Real estate prices in Hawaii are extremely expensive, and BYU-Hawaii's Housing Office rents houses and townhouses to eligible faculty and administrative staff at reasonable prices for the Hawaiian market. There are 2-, 3-, 4-, and 5-bedroom units, which are assigned according to the following family sizes:

Single, couple, or 1-2 children (same sex) 2-bedroom
2 to 3 children 3-bedroom
4 to 5 children 4-bedroom
6 or more children 5-bedroom

Public utilities are provided by Hawaiian ElectricHawaiian Telcom, and Oceanic Time Warner Cable (townhouses use BYUH's campus cable) There are no natural gas appliances in the university-owned faculty housing, and water and sewage are included in the rent.

Education Laie is served by these public schools: Laie Elementary School, founded by LDS Missionaries in 1895, and Kahuku High & Intermediate School. Kahuku is located about 5 miles north of Laie.

Health & Climate The BYU-H campus has a health center that serves students and employees. Emergencies are referred to Kahuku Hospital, about 5 miles north of Laie. Specialists and more sophisticated resources can be found in Kaneohe (40 minutes from Laie,) Kailua (50 minutes,) and in Honolulu (75 minutes). Our major hospitals areQueen's Medical Center, in Honolulu and Castle Medical Center, in Kailua.

By law, all new residents in Hawaii have to be tested for tuberculosis. The exam is conducted at a public health center in Honolulu and it is free.

Water and sanitation in Laie are managed by HRI-Hawaii Reserves, Inc., a Church-owned company.

The climate in the island is warm and very humid most of the year. The so-called "trade winds" blow regularly most of the time, and that helps to ease the discomfort caused by the humidity. Maximum temperatures are often in the 80's and lows are normally around the low to mid-70's. In the winter, low temperatures may reach the 60's and combined with the humidity it may feel a little "chilly" in the early hours of the morning. The trade winds also bring fast-moving clouds that cause at times heavy rains that last for just a few minutes.

Transportation Laie is located 38 miles from Honolulu, and can be reached via the scenic Kamehameha highway. The speed limit in most single-lane highways in the island is 35 mph. Therefore, under normal traffic conditions it takes about one hour to reach Honolulu by car.

New residents may have their cars shipped to Hawaii from Los Angeles, Oakland, or Seattle. The shipping companies give preference to major cargo, and use only the leftover space in their ships for cars. Because of that, they do not offer fast deliveries nor precise scheduling. Under normal conditions it takes between 4 to 6 weeks for a car to arrive in Honolulu. For more information, check shipping companies such as Matson or Horizon Lines.

Once in Hawaii, a car must be registered locally. For more information, check Honolulu's Division of Motor Vehicles and Licensing

The island has quite an effective public bus system, called "TheBus", and it offers air-conditioned buses that run every 30 minutes on weekdays and every hour on weekends.

Shopping For minor household purchases and some entertainment, there is the Laie Shopping Center, administered by HRI-Hawaii Reserves, Inc., a Church-owned company. This plaza from Monday thru Saturday offers movies at Laie Palms Cinemas, banking with Bank of Hawaii, fast food restaurants, hardware store(Ace Hardware), post office, dentist, barber, etc.-

Major purchases and services will require a trip "to town" (i.e., either Honolulu, Mililani, Waipahu, or Pearl City). In town one can find all kinds of stores and services, either in malls or neighborhood shopping centers.

As far as malls, there is the Windward Mall in Kaneohe (40 minutes from Laie), Pearlridge Center in Aiea, Pearl Highlands in Pearl City, Aloha Tower Marketplace, and the large Ala Moana Center in Honolulu (all between 60 to 90 minutes from Laie, depending on traffic conditions)

Discount warehouses Sam's Club and Costco have stores in Honolulu and Pearl City, about one hour from Laie by car. Wal-Mart has stores in Honolulu, Mililani, and Pearl City (about one hour away). Kmart also has stores in Honolulu and Waikele. Office and computer supplies can be found at Office Depot, and Fisher Hawaii stores located in Honolulu and Waikele.

Groceries The Laie Shopping Center has a branch of the Foodland grocery chain. The Safeway grocery chain has a large store in Kaneohe, about 40 minutes by car or bus from Laie.

Prices for groceries in Hawaii may appear higher than in the continental U.S. (a.k.a. "the mainland".) The large chains of grocery stores offer free membership cards for permanent Hawaii residents, which provide discounts in many products. For example, the supermarket chain Foodland offers its "Maika'i Card", and Safeway also has a card.