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Tips for Traveling to HawaiiCon: 2018 Edition

A few items to keep in mind when heading to the Big Island for HawaiiCon.

By MJ Wilke


HawaiiCon is a unique, intimate comic-con set on a beautiful tropical island, not to mention you don't have to go far to "see" the planet Vulcan. Bonus. So, if you are heading to HawaiiCon or planning for your next adventure, get in touch with the aloha spirit and then take a few tips from Wayward Nerd. 



Special events. Take advantage of the special events with guests that are unique to HawaiiCon, in the past events included: Luau with Tahmoh Penikett, Writing Workshops with John Scalzi, Snorkel Tour with Rod Roddenberry, and many more. These events are separately ticketed and many will sell out before the event. 


Nerdy side trip. Visit the planet Vulcan by planning a nerdy side trip to Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park. If you are interested in photos with your Starfleet uniform, the afternoon hours in the park are best. As a bonus, by arriving a day or two early to take a nerdy side trip, you will get acclimated to the weather and time zone change for the start of the con. Be sure to check the National Park’s website for the most recent park closures. For more information, check out our Hawai’i Nerdy Places.


Note: Please respect the Hawaiian culture and federal laws. From “It is a federal offense to remove, destroy, alter, deface, dig or disturb anything from its natural state.” Let’s all keep Pele happy.


Check your luggage. If you have numerous carry-ons or a heavy suitcase, it is worth the extra expense to check luggage. The Kona International Airport has tarmac gates. Once you land, you may climb a stairway or walk a ramp to the tarmac, then walk to the airport gate for boarding and disembarkment. Either way can be precarious with heavy carry-on luggage.



Shopping bags. Stores in Hawaii do not have bags; you either need to bring your own or you will have to buy one.


Sunscreen. You can count on a huge mark-up price at hotel gift shops, so it’s a good idea to bring it with you. 



Stock your room. Resorts charge a premium for bottled water. Upon arrival, plan some time on your way to the resort to stop at a grocery or convenience store to stock up on beverages and healthy snacks for your hotel room.


Rental car refueling. There are no gas stations at the airport and none nearby. Plan ahead for refueling your rental car before returning to the airport. Also, if you have an early morning flight, be aware many gas stations do not open before 7 am.


Aloha, time to kick off your shoes!


For more about HawaiiCon and galleries of past years, check out our Comic-Con Travel page.



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MJ Wilke is the founder of Wayward Nerd. She is a road warrior. A nerd. A trekkie. A whovian. A Star Wars fanatic. She will go where no one has gone before, come back and post it here.

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