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Visitor Etiquette

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  • Mista Bumpy
    replied
    Re: Visitor Etiquette

    Don't forget to tell them, if they plan to do a lot of walking tours, Use those crosswalks, or the risk might be,

    1) getting a ticket if there's a cop nearby, or
    2) they could get run over! Honolulu's standing in the pedestrian fatality department is sad, to say the least, one of the highest in the nation. This goes for the Waikiki neighborhood, as well as everywhere else on the island. Encourage them to use Da Bus - it's inexpensive and you meet the most inneresting people!

    Aloha!

    Leave a comment:


  • tutusue
    replied
    Re: Visitor Etiquette

    Originally posted by tikiyaki View Post
    [...] If someone is nice enough to let you stay in their home, you should at least take them out, cook, like Sue said, or put some food in the fridge for their inconvenience. Bring a gift...SOMETHING...It's only right.
    Hey...you can even stock up the fridge for your host's convenience!!! Either way, they'll appreciate it! Couldn't resist, Tikiyaki!!! And, yes, a host(ess) gift is always in order.

    Leave a comment:


  • LikaNui
    replied
    Re: Visitor Etiquette

    One thing I forgot to add, to the original poster:
    You mentioned that you offered the use of your car to one of your upcoming visitors. Probably not such a good idea, for a couple of reasons.
    First, if the car breaks down while they're driving it, you'll feel bad and, even worse, it might develop into a debate of who was at fault. Good way to screw up a friendship.
    Also, visitors tend to be busy looking at the sights and not paying as much attention to driving as they would at home. Plus, they're not aware of some local driving customs, like waving other vehicles in front of you and especially the fact that locals tend to run yellow lights. Visitors also want to stop at places like Halona Blowhole and Makapu`u Lookout, etc., where car break-ins are commonplace. You want your car to suffer that, or to risk losing what you might have in the trunk or glovebox, etc?
    Best to let them rent a car.
    Then tell them to hang something/anything over the mirror, and get some decals to stick on the car and especially on the window over the UPC marker that tells crooks it's a rental car. The stickers are easy to scrape off again when it's time to turn the rental car back in. Filling up the rear window area with empty fast-food bags and other 'trash' also keeps the car looking local. I even know some regular visitors who throw dirt on their rental car for that same reason.
    Just a few tips, for whatever they're worth...

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  • tikiyaki
    replied
    Re: Visitor Etiquette

    This is a great thread.

    On my last trip, I met 3 people from Hawaii messageboards (2 from here, one from another). The one from here offered to take us out for breakfast., his treat. He said this upfront. Regardless, I offered to pay, and he refused to let me. He also gave a very nice gift assortment of Mac Nut candies and island coffees. We had a great time. I'll sure reciprocate when and if that person visits LA.
    The other, gave us the Chinatown tour (guess who!) , and I paid for lunch, even tho she kept buying us manapua and stuff from all the shops. I was just too slow to the draw. (Mahalo auntie)
    Basically, I received the Aloha Spirit in spades in both cases.

    The third one basically cleared his schedule (he's self employed), drove all the way from Puna to Kona Airport to meet us with flower leis, and spent 3 days taking us hiking, sightseeing and photographing us the entire time. He even spent money on a hotel room on the Kona side. I told him he could sleep in our condo, even tho' my I just met the guy and my fiancee' was a bit weary. He opted for renting the room anyway.

    Needless to say, I did my best NOT to let him pay for ANYTHING food-wise the entire time, tho' he kept trying to.

    I always have trouble letting people pay, but will let them if they insist, but in situations like the second one, I feel like it's only right to pay for the meals and stuff when someone is taking you all over the island on their time.

    As far as visitors go, I've had my share living in LA...they always wanna see the friggin walk of fame (yawn) and other Hollywood landmarks. If it's one of my close friends, I try to point them there and tell them to have a great time
    We'll meet up later for dinner.

    If someone is nice enough to let you stay in their home, you should at least take them out, cook, like Sue said, or put some food in the fridge for their inconvenience. Bring a gift...SOMETHING...It's only right.
    Last edited by tikiyaki; April 16, 2007, 02:17 PM.

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  • Leo Lakio
    replied
    Re: Visitor Etiquette

    Early on in my relationship with the AF from Kane`ohe, she warned me not to assume that her parents would invite me to stay with them when we go to visit; she knew that her father resented it if people automatically thought of them as a way to avoid paying for a hotel (and rightfully so.)

    So, just four months into the relationship, they came to Seattle for a visit, and of course, I spent a bit of time with them. At dinner the last night they were in town, her father says, "I hope you'll come and stay with us sometime soon."

    To this day, I am amazed that the AF's jaw was able to hit the ground so silently.

    (We reciprocate, naturally - they stay with us when they visit Seattle, even though our place is quite a bit smaller. There is never a question.)


    LikaNui - that side story sounds oddly familiar...

    Leave a comment:


  • Miulang
    replied
    Re: Visitor Etiquette

    Like Lika says, whenever someone is kind enough to let me stay with them, I never expect my hosts to also have to entertain me.

    Whenever possible, I scope out sights that are of interest to me and have a list ready in advance, so by the time I arrive with a hostess gift in hand, I pretty much know where I want to go and what I want to do. Most of the time, my hosts have day jobs and it would be a horrible imposition on them to have to take time off to show me around. I also offer to cook meals and do other things to be helpful around the hosts' house because having guests is hard work, even if they are only providing me with a place to stay (I know they probably had to work hard to get the place ready for my visit!)

    And I enjoy getting lost in a new town and finding my way around...it's the best way to learn about a new place and its people!

    Miulang

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  • LikaNui
    replied
    Re: Visitor Etiquette

    For anyone living in Hawai`i, rule #1 is to never ever tell anyone that you have a spare bedroom. Instead, suggest some hotels for them to call. (Having them make their own reservations also insinuates that they should pay for it themselves.)
    Rule #2, of course, is the classic "See Rule #1."
    It's one thing to let your best friend or someone from your immediate family stay with you, but for everyone else you'd better make darned sure you know what to expect. Or, see rule #1.
    Visitors also tend to forget that we have jobs and can't simply drop everything to show them around for a week or two. They forget that we can be tired after a long day of work and don't want to go out every single night. And they forget that we have really high expenses living here.
    As for the checks, tell them right up front that you don't want to see any problems and misunderstandings develop, so you'll each pay for your own.

    Side story:
    Very recently, an HT member (and their 'significant other') from the mainland was here and we met at a well-known local bar/restaurant to hear some live music and have drinks and pupus. At one point the other two were distracted and I asked the waitress to give me the check when we were ready to leave. She grinned and told me the other two had beaten me to it and already told her the same thing, and she told me we had to resolve it ourselves. So...
    I waited until we were almost ready to leave, then excused myself to go to the restroom... but I stopped at the waitress station, asked her for the check, and paid it. Back at the table a few minutes later, the guests quietly asked the waitress to bring the check. You should've seen their faces when she told them that I'd already paid it. Very funny! They congratulated me on outsmarting them, and we all had a good laugh.

    Leave a comment:


  • tutusue
    replied
    Re: Visitor Etiquette

    I was just reminded of my former SIL's recent visit and confronting some of the same scenarios that you are now...esp. higher ticket tourist attractions. I offered ideas by saying, "I don't know whether or not this fits into your travel budget but you might like <name & describe attraction AND the cost>."! Sneaky, huh?!!! Seriously, a line does need to be drawn and it's not always easy to do. Each situation will require a different line.

    Other possibilities when scheduling with visiting friends or family...
    "Let's set aside a night when WE can take YOU to dinner."
    "We have something really special to show you...OUR treat."...
    That let's your company know they're not on an all expense paid vacation!!!

    I have the most difficult time drawing that line with my daughter. She's still my "little girl" and my hand still whips out my wallet in a knee-jerk reaction when we go out! The fact of the matter is she makes one heckuva lot more money than I do so can easily afford to pay her own way. She doesn't expect me to pay her way, mind you. It's MY hang-up!

    Just some Monday morning musings when I should be working!

    Leave a comment:


  • tnts2k
    replied
    Re: Visitor Etiquette

    I'm sure an authentic luau would be wonderful. Maybe I'll get a chance to attend one someday. I'm also sure you're right about only needing to go once. We're from San Antonio and feel the same way about visiting the Alamo.

    Leave a comment:


  • Miulang
    replied
    Re: Visitor Etiquette

    Originally posted by tnts2k View Post
    Thanks for the advice. We feel blessed to be able to afford a home where we can have guests but we honestly hadn't thoroughly thought through the rest of it. My husband and I have discussed it a little but I wanted to get some outside opinions. I tend to want to pay for everything for everybody but that would put a serious strain on the budget before too long.

    As far as free activities go - we're all over that. We've lived here since last summer and the only time we paid for a tourist attraction was when our boys came to visit at Christmas and we did a sunset catamaran cruise and toured the Bowfin. I personally want to go to a luau and have been waiting for a visitor that would enjoy it with me. I just wasn't sure if I should pay her admission also.

    I love living here and want to share the blessing. We downsized from 2300 sq. ft. on the mainland to 1500 sq. ft. here but don't feel like we've lost much except some storage and parking space. It takes a lot less time to clean 1500 sq. ft.

    Thanks again for the input.
    Well, I can tell you one thing about those "organized" luaus...once you've been to one of them, you never need to bother with going to another one. Now a genuine, downhome authentic family luau on the other hand (like for a baby's first birthday) now THAT's something I could attend every day of the year! One of those kinds of luaus are where you truly experience the foods that are Hawai'i today.

    <oi;amg

    Leave a comment:


  • tnts2k
    replied
    Re: Visitor Etiquette

    Thanks for the advice. We feel blessed to be able to afford a home where we can have guests but we honestly hadn't thoroughly thought through the rest of it. My husband and I have discussed it a little but I wanted to get some outside opinions. I tend to want to pay for everything for everybody but that would put a serious strain on the budget before too long.

    As far as free activities go - we're all over that. We've lived here since last summer and the only time we paid for a tourist attraction was when our boys came to visit at Christmas and we did a sunset catamaran cruise and toured the Bowfin. I personally want to go to a luau and have been waiting for a visitor that would enjoy it with me. I just wasn't sure if I should pay her admission also.

    I love living here and want to share the blessing. We downsized from 2300 sq. ft. on the mainland to 1500 sq. ft. here but don't feel like we've lost much except some storage and parking space. It takes a lot less time to clean 1500 sq. ft.

    Thanks again for the input.

    Leave a comment:


  • tutusue
    replied
    Re: Visitor Etiquette

    Originally posted by tnts2k View Post
    [...]1. My CPA from the mainland and his wife will be here on vacation in a couple of weeks. He e-mailed and asked if we could get together for dinner. Who pays? Them? Us? Do we split the check? I don't want to be rude, but I can't afford to take everyone that shows up on the island out to dinner. We've already had this same situation twice and we paid, but I'm not sure if that's the right way to handle it.
    If your CPA and wife aren't availing themselves of any of your generous hospitality then, if I was in your shoes, I'd state up front that you're looking forward to getting together and state a "dutch" rule, the wording of your choice! That gives them the opportunity to offer to pay...or agree!
    2. One of my best girlfriends is coming to visit for a week in June. We provided her airline ticket (my husband's employer gives us a certain number every year and we had one left over) and she will be staying with us, of course. While she's here I would like to do some touristy things like the Paradise Cove luau. Do I pay for her ticket to those kinds of things? Do I let her pay my way to anything?
    You're offering wonderful hospitality, a free ticket and free lodging. Let your friend pay for whatever she offers. If you're not sure who should pay, offer going dutch and see if that elicits further discussion.

    I had friends who used to live on Maui and I was allowed to visit whenever I wanted! I would pay for dinners out which definitely weren't every night. Since they worked, and she never did cook, I would buy groceries and have dinner ready when they got home. Home cooked dinners were a treat for them!

    3. The three adult daughters of some very dear friends will be visiting soon. They aren't really coming to see us, they are just using us as a hotel (which is fine). I have also offered them the use of my car. We have planned to go out to dinner together their first night here. Should we buy? Should we let them buy?
    Let them buy as a thank you gesture for your incredible generosity. If you're unsure what the expectation is, offer to go dutch and see what happens.
    Any help you can provide will be greatly appreciated. I don't want to seem cheap, but I'm afraid we'll go broke if we don't set some boundaries. We are happy to share our home with friends and family but don't want to be taken advantage of.
    Welcome to one of the realities of living in Hawaii!!! Have you and your husband talked this subject over? If not, it might be a good idea to do just that and have a game plan in place. Yes, out of town guests can easily break the bank! If a friend/guest sees you as cheap for not paying for them well, that's not a true friend and definitely not someone you want as a house guest.

    My home is too small for house guests so I always offer, up front, to pay my own way. If I want to treat someone I either take them to a favorite place of mine where they're not allowed to pay or I state the invite in such as way that it's very simple to understand my intent.

    Your predicament isn't unusual at all but it is uncomfortable until you get a game plan in place.

    Leave a comment:


  • blueyecicle
    replied
    Re: Visitor Etiquette

    What's wrong with going dutch?

    My sister visited me last week and invited me out to dinner.
    When the waitress asked about the checks I just popped up and said "Seperate checks please."

    I cannot afford to pay for her and her family.
    They invited and I just made it clear. I knew they could afford dinner, but I didn't expect them to pay.
    People who vacations somewhere usually budget for dinners.

    If I can't afford to go I always make a large dinner at home and take it to the park...but if I were in Hawaii I would take it to the beach (:

    Leave a comment:


  • Miulang
    replied
    Re: Visitor Etiquette

    Craig is right about the CPA. All the CPA has to do is talk about investments or taxes for 5 minutes and it could qualify as a business expense!

    Too bad you bought a big house with extra room for guests. If it was me, I would have bought a one-bedroom condo so anybody who wanted to come visit "me" would have to stay someplace else (just being facetious).

    As to who pays when going out on the town, it's whoever does the inviting, unless you agree in advance otherwise (I have gone "Dutch" sometimes when I knew that my host couldn't afford to pay for my meal).

    And since the cost of living in Hawai'i is so high, what about exploring some FREE or low cost activities? Many are also unique to Hawai'i and can be just as interesting as spending $45/head for a luau.

    Miulang

    Leave a comment:


  • craigwatanabe
    replied
    Re: Visitor Etiquette

    Originally posted by tnts2k View Post
    I'm not sure this is the right place to ask this question, but I thought I'd give it a try.

    My husband's job brought us to Hawaii late last summer and we love it here. We recently moved into our new home in Makakilo and the visitors are lining up! My question is about who pays for what when people visit. Here are some scenarios:

    1. My CPA from the mainland and his wife will be here on vacation in a couple of weeks. He e-mailed and asked if we could get together for dinner. Who pays? Them? Us? Do we split the check? I don't want to be rude, but I can't afford to take everyone that shows up on the island out to dinner. We've already had this same situation twice and we paid, but I'm not sure if that's the right way to handle it.

    2. One of my best girlfriends is coming to visit for a week in June. We provided her airline ticket (my husband's employer gives us a certain number every year and we had one left over) and she will be staying with us, of course. While she's here I would like to do some touristy things like the Paradise Cove luau. Do I pay for her ticket to those kinds of things? Do I let her pay my way to anything?

    3. The three adult daughters of some very dear friends will be visiting soon. They aren't really coming to see us, they are just using us as a hotel (which is fine). I have also offered them the use of my car. We have planned to go out to dinner together their first night here. Should we buy? Should we let them buy?

    Any help you can provide will be greatly appreciated. I don't want to seem cheap, but I'm afraid we'll go broke if we don't set some boundaries. We are happy to share our home with friends and family but don't want to be taken advantage of.

    Thanks.
    Tell your CPA, "thanks for the invitation, I'm sure your hospitality will be welcomed by our family as the cost of living here is very high and we sure appreciate your generosity of taking care of dinner, I'm sure you could write it off as a business expense".

    Leave a comment:

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