Maui Bound

Finally, Chris and Marnie have returned to… Maui!

Well not quite, I’m actually typing this from 30000 to 40000 feet or so. And with us in the final hour of our journey to the valley isle, I thought I would use the time wisely to provide a “pre-Day 1” update.

Liam at YVR

Liam is excited to fly!


You can imagine our day was a frenetic one where we found ourselves tying up loose ends, making sure we had everything we needed packed, and had everything around the condo tended to. Even the cat knew something was up.

With everything needing doing, we ended up leaving our house an hour later than intended which doesn’t jive with slightly OCD me. While it’s obvious we made it on the plane, the time leading up to us checking our bags, getting through security and US customs pre-clearance and then to our gate had me a wee bit agitated. Fortunately Marnie is used to this by now. Suffice to say we’ve learned to work with our unique quirks.

Looking to provide ourselves something of a treat on our flight, Marnie and I decided we would try the Plus seating upgrade on WestJet which only cost $45 each at time of check-in – considerably cheaper than booking it upfront. Now before you go and roll your eyes that we spent extra cash, the additional leg room is more than worth it. And to top it off, we also received complimentary snacks, beverage (beer or spirits if we so desired) and complimentary use of the TrayVu tablet (our plane didn’t have back of seat displays). If you’re every curious on whether you should try the upgrade, I definitely feel its worth it for a longer trip.

Update: We have landed and gotten a solid night of sleep in. You can’t begin to understand how excited we are.

Making the Trip to Maui – Flight Discount

WestJet 737

WestJet 737 – courtesy of Greg Hounslow


A couple of weeks ago I mentioned that we would be looking into obtaining a flight discount for all our guests who choose to fly WestJet, and well, the discount code has arrived – W1368.

To book reservations using our wedding discount code, you have to call the WestJet Groups department at 1-888-493-7853 as wedding discount codes don’t work online yet. A few other things that are important to note:

  • The wedding code W1368 must be quoted at the time of booking!
  • Our wedding discount code gets you a 10% discount off the best available fare at the time of booking, excluding Econo fares (i.e. seat sales and web fares).
  • The discount is valid for WestJet flights into and out of Maui and Honolulu, Hawaii.
  • The discounted rates are applicable for travel up to seven days prior to (March 7, 2014) and seven days after (March 21, 2014) our wedding date (March 14, 2014). While the discount doesn’t apply beyond that timeframe, please still quote the code as it counts towards our 15 traveller minimum.

Having quickly taken a peak at what the savings would be for someone flying out of Vancouver based on current fares, our discount code gets you a better deal off the Flex fare level than the Econo does straight up – not to mention slightly cheaper fees for those who need to change details after the flight is booked.

Making the Trip to Maui

One of the reasons Marnie and I sent out Save the Dates for our wedding was to allow our guests to sort out accommodation, flights, and everything else between in time for the trip. Now sure, you’d think a year is a lot of time but as our wedding is happening during Spring Break AND happens to be at a popular destination, time is of the essence.

How to Get to Maui

You’ve got two choices – boat or plane. Making that assumption that most of you will be flying in to Maui, there are a couple of things to consider.

First of all – Maui doesn’t have a US Customs facility to process inbound international passengers. What this means is you either need to come direct from a US port of call or through Vancouver (YVR), Calgary (YYC) or Edmonton (YEG) airports as they have US pre-clearance available.

Secondly, as most of our guests will be coming from Canada, Marnie and I will be securing a 10% discount code through WestJet shortly for our wedding guests. Having checked out the options through Air Canada, as well as Alaska Airlines and Hawaiian Airlines, we think WestJet provides us the best means to get to where we want to go for good value. So wherever you may be joining us from, we recommend checking out the different fare options available to you as nearly every major airport on the along the west coast can get you to Maui direct or through Honolulu.

Kahului Airport in Maui

Kahului Airport – courtesy of Kris Nelson

Where to Stay

For each of our trips, Marnie and I have booked a condo at the Kamaole Sands Condominium Resort (as seen below) in Kihei – and a location close to our wedding venue – through Vacation Rentals By Owner (VRBO). This particular resort has beautiful lawns and gardens, a great pool and hot tub area, tennis courts and several BBQ areas, so for someone thinking of making it a vacation you’d probably find this place perfect.

Regardless of your choice for location, we do encourage you to use VRBO to search for a place to stay. While the island has many great hotels, our wedding is during the high season and the best rate we could get at a reasonable location was $266/night – and that was the wedding rate!

Kamaole Sands Condominium Resort

Kamaole Sands Condominium Resort – courtesy of Mark Beeson

How to Get Around

Rental cars shouldn’t be an issue for most, though we do recommend looking into booking yours sooner rather than later.

We’ve gone with a mainstream company in the past, this time around we’ve decided to go with Kihei Rent A Car. While their cars are not the latest and greatest, the company is a local, family run business that has excellent reviews – they also provide free airport transfers as well. Making the choice even easier is that we all get a 10% discount off their regular prices (which are already significantly lower than the mainstream companies) should 5 or more of us commit. To get yourself included with that discount, you just have to mention that you are with Marnie Greenfield and they will do the rest once we get enough bookings.

The other option for you is to rely on taxi and/or transit. While Maui Bus is affordable and will get you between most destinations you’ll need to visit, you’re obviously tied to set schedules. And sure taxi can get you wherever you want to go (for the most part), the island of Maui is not the tiniest of places so you’ll find that taxi fares will add up over time – and probably be more expensive than the same cost to rent a car.

Red Rental Car

Red Rental Car – courtesy of torbakhopper

So there you have it. The nitty gritty on what you need to start thinking about if you’re looking to join us. If you still need any help, please reach out to us via the normal channels or the “Contact Us” page above.