Any families stationed in Hawaii?! — The Bump
Military Families

Any families stationed in Hawaii?!

Hello ladies.  My husband and I are currently stationed in Washington State (Bangor Base).  We have to choose whether he'll be re-enlisting for next year or not, very soon.  We're debating putting in for fast attacks in Hawaii.  Anyone currently stationed there?  If so, can you fill me in?  We have a 4 month old now, he would be a year and a half when/if we moved there. I've never even been to Hawaii, but would consider this move.  I'd appreciate any advice you may have! Thanks!
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Re: Any families stationed in Hawaii?!

  • HI,

    I'm from Oregon. We are currently stationed in Hawaii. My husband was on a fast attack out here. I do enjoy it. It's got unbeatable weather. There are negatives, it's expensive for example, but if you're open to adventure I think it's great. I met my husband here so I've actually lived here for quite a long time. Also we just got shore duty here as well, so we will be here for a bit longer. We'd like to stay on a fast attack boat so we will probably try to stay here after shore duty as well if that tells you anything. We are both runners so we LOVE the climate. I have 4 month old twins and a 20 month old it's nice to not have to worry about bundling them up. As they get older the beach is really a great way to spend a day.

    Best of luck

     

  • Meh, I am of a different opinion than the PP so I will share mine as well. Hubby is Army so might be a little different for you but probably not much. First, cost of living is really high out here. Gas prices are around $4.30 and climbing (the highest in the country). Gallon of milk is $6+ dollars. Sure, the military pays you a little extra but it is more than principal. :)

    As PP mentioned there is only one season here year round so if you enjoy the changing seasons your in for a sad surprise. Christmas just doesn't feel like Christmas when it is 80 degrees outside.

    Traffic on the island is pretty terrible since there is only one major highway and the job market is pretty sad unless you want to work in travel or tourism. Housing is crowded and most places have little to no yard space.

    For the most part the locals are friendly but there are many folks here with the opinion that the military should leave the island and that we are "occupying" Hawaii which in some opinions was illegally and forcefully taken by the US government back in the 1890's. I just took a class at one of the local colleges about Hawaiian History and this seems to be a pretty prevelant opinion among natives on the island.

    The beaches are great, but it does get old and island fever is real! Flying back to the states is pretty expensive depending on where your family is and a ticket to the midwest can cost upwards of $1,000 per person much more to the east coast.

    Hubby and I will be ready to leave when our time is up here next year and I probably won't be back. Many people have the impression that living in Hawaii is like being on vacation and it really isn't. While every station has it's pros and cons I would never choose to come back here. Your experience could be different but just giving you some things to think about. Not trying to convince you of how terrible it is, although I know that is how it might sound. Just want you to hear some of the negatives and not "It's Hawaii, it's sunny and beautiful and we all sit around on the beach drinking Mai Tai's." :) Good Luck!

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  • I'm not there anymore but I grew up there(Army brat) so I'll give you my opinion as a kid. I loved it. The schools were amazing(I went on post), getting to go barefoot in the sand at recess was awesome. My mom said that we got early on Friday for "Aloha Friday" because of people wanting to surf. Idk if they still do that or not.

    I really enjoyed growing up in such a cultural environment. I grew up learning to be adventurous and try new things. Being raised there, I love Korean/Japanese/Hawaiian food. I have a love for sushi and fish. I was exposed to the Hawaiian way of life, very relaxed, calm and respectful of mother Earth. The natives can be very protective but at the same time they're some of the nicest people on Earth.

    People say the cost of living is high but if you use a smart budget and coupons it is easily attainable.  I used to love going to Pearl Harbor, the Polynesian Cultural Center, the volcanoes, beaches, mountains. I honestly believe that because of my upbringing there, that's why I'm such an outdoorsy person. Most of those things are low cost or free if you don't need gear.

    As far as jobs, my mom worked at the Dole Plantation and then got her PADI certification so she could teach scuba diving on the islands. She says she did get island fever but that was because she wanted away from my dad(long story).   She now swears that she's going to spend her retirement fund on a one way ticket and little shack so she can go back. We went there for our honeymoon and DH is convinced he wants to join her. lol.

    image

    CJ 05/29/2013

  • I have to agree the traffic can be really annoying. It's like they built some of the major road in 1963 thinking there would never be more cars or possibly that by the year 2000 we'd all have flying cars.... 

  • imageBacon+lettuce+tomato:

    I'm not there anymore but I grew up there(Army brat) so I'll give you my opinion as a kid. I loved it. The schools were amazing(I went on post), getting to go barefoot in the sand at recess was awesome. My mom said that we got early on Friday for "Aloha Friday" because of people wanting to surf. Idk if they still do that or not.

    I really enjoyed growing up in such a cultural environment. I grew up learning to be adventurous and try new things. Being raised there, I love Korean/Japanese/Hawaiian food. I have a love for sushi and fish. I was exposed to the Hawaiian way of life, very relaxed, calm and respectful of mother Earth. The natives can be very protective but at the same time they're some of the nicest people on Earth.

    People say the cost of living is high but if you use a smart budget and coupons it is easily attainable.  I used to love going to Pearl Harbor, the Polynesian Cultural Center, the volcanoes, beaches, mountains. I honestly believe that because of my upbringing there, that's why I'm such an outdoorsy person. Most of those things are low cost or free if you don't need gear.

    As far as jobs, my mom worked at the Dole Plantation and then got her PADI certification so she could teach scuba diving on the islands. She says she did get island fever but that was because she wanted away from my dad(long story).   She now swears that she's going to spend her retirement fund on a one way ticket and little shack so she can go back. We went there for our honeymoon and DH is convinced he wants to join her. lol.

    Your experience sounds wonderful but I do have to disagree on one thing. The schools out here are not very good. In fact, they have some of the lowest test scores/funding in the country. As an education major in college out here at the moment we are learning the the education system needs a major overhaul.

    As a child, you probably loved the schools because you didn't know any better. But truly the statistics show that the school system is very behind.

    Last year they couldn't afford to pay the teachers for 5 day school weeks so they decided to have furlough Fridays. Basically students went to school Monday-Thursday to save money. Pretty sad and parents out here had a really tough time arranging child are and what not.  

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  • The schools are terrible so if you will have school-aged kids, that is something to consider.  You could always take a fast attack out of Guam.  DOD schools and still tropical. =-) Smaller island though.
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  • Thanks so much ladies! I really appreciate your feedback. :) I can't wait to share your responses with my husband.  It's good to know the negatives along with the positives for sure.  We are both adventurous and LOVE the outdoors so I know we'd love the environment and climate.  I especially liked hearing how it was growing up in HI, thats my main focal point....I want to have a place where my son can run and be free (more than he can in WA anyway).  The beach, the culture, etc...all sounds like a great place to spend his first 4 years of life or so.  I'll be in touch!  Take care......
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  • My husband has been stationed out here for nearly 7 years. We're both ready to leave. Yes, it's technically part of the United States, but I mostly feel like I live in a third world country. As others have mentioned, it's expensive and traffic sucks. I live four miles from where I work, and it's not uncommon for there to be a half hour commute. Schools are not good. I don't really like the culture. There's a lot of homeless people as well as a lot of petty theft ie my cars have been broken into 3 times in the last 2 months. I get island fever really easy, and airfare is so damn expensive. The list goes on. I am looking forward to the new phase of my life. There, of course, is some good about Hawaii. I'm just too jaded to talk about it. ;-) 

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  • imageSamiantha101:

    My husband has been stationed out here for nearly 7 years. We're both ready to leave. Yes, it's technically part of the United States, but I mostly feel like I live in a third world country. As others have mentioned, it's expensive and traffic sucks. I live four miles from where I work, and it's not uncommon for there to be a half hour commute. Schools are not good. I don't really like the culture. There's a lot of homeless people as well as a lot of petty theft ie my cars have been broken into 3 times in the last 2 months. I get island fever really easy, and airfare is so damn expensive. The list goes on. I am looking forward to the new phase of my life. There, of course, is some good about Hawaii. I'm just too jaded to talk about it. ;-) 

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