Everyone loves a good deal. I sure as heck do. Any event I attend, every activity I do, you better believe I am researching the absolute shiz out of Groupon, Living Social, Yipit, MyDeal, you name it.
The face of elation after finding a good deal. (p.s. this butterfly is in Haleiwa the surfer town!)
We were lucky enough to be gifted Oahu GO cards for our wedding but as we went along and chose/did the activities, we really evaluated the deal we were getting. We wanted to see if this was something we would have potentially bought for ourselves or would recommend to others.
The card that we got was for 4 days and cost $360 for 2 people.
-We were able to do a LOT of REALLY EXPENSIVE things! Pearl Harbor alone was $130 for the two of us, and included all of the major attractions such as the U.S.S. Missouri and the U.S.S. Bowfin.
-It opened our eyes to a lot of different options for activities (although I knew about most of them … I love to research things to do!)
-We definitely got our exercise running around to each activity trying to fit it all in!
-It was REALLY hard to fit in everything that we wanted to do in only 4 days. This was exacerbated by the fact that Oahu seems to close everything at 4pm!
-Some of the activities we were very disappointed in (looking at you DOLE)
-A lot of the “activities” were tricks. It showed a price like $22 to go on a hike BUT WITH US IT’S FREE!! When you look into it, you see that the hike (or whatever) is free, but the $22 is for transportation. Which would be cheaper if you just walked to it, rented a car, or sometimes even got an Uber or Lyft.
What do you think so far?
So overall if we would have done all of the activities on the card that we fit in and paid for it ourselves, we would have spent $556 for two people. The cards were $360 for two people so yes we would have “saved money” (if we bought it ourselves). However, many activities on the cards we just didn’t want to do. One of the activities was “shopping.” A tour company would literally charge a (to me) crazy amount of money to just drop you off at a mall, but it showed on the card as some amazing “shopping” deal. It’s not, read the fine print!
Another thing is this card requires a LOT of planning ahead. We printed out the whole thing and by the end it was shredded to bits, highlighted all over, and scribbled on. We even drew maps on it! Something to keep in mind is that you are (presumably) on vacation, and if you buy something like the GO Card, with limited times you can use it depending on how many days you buy it for, you will most likely overbook yourself. We had to do quite a bit of rearranging because we didn’t quite know how much time to give ourselves for say, Pearl Harbor or the Bishop Museum. Since we are crazy, we also wrote down prices for all of the activities to see how we could best get “our” money’s worth. (We are the people that go home hurting from the buffet because …. we paid good money dammit!)
Also, we were really silly and assumed we could pick as many as we wanted from the “premier attractions” at the top of the page. They included things like swimming with the dolphins at Sea Life Park, the luau + entrance fee + Ha: Breath of Life show at the PCC, and a sunset catamaran sail. Nope! Oops … we ended up picking the PCC and actually bought the sunset sail on Groupon for very cheap. Read the fine print!
Very worth it
I just went to the Go Oahu Card website and saw they have a handy dandy little feature where you can “build your own card,” so I tried building one that included all of the activities that we actually ended up doing and reached a total of $416. I didn’t include a couple things because they just weren’t on there, such as the Pineapple Maze at Dole. A MUST SEE!! (kidding… read this). The fun thing about doing it that way is that you have 30 whole days to use the card! So much nicer, but also more expensive for each attraction.
We had fun, we appreciated the gift, but I think next time I would really sit down and think about everything I wanted to do in that city first then compare it to the card. If all of the activities I wanted to do were on there and I thought we could smash them out with plenty of time, I’d do it again. If only one or two of the activities I wanted were included and ultimately I’d be paying more for a “deal” because I didn’t want to do 80% of the things.
What do you think? Have you used a Go Card before? Was it worth it?
I can’t end this blog without introducing my new baby! His name is Laniakea and he was crocheted by Brent’s coworker as a birthday present to me, how sweet is that? We will really miss the kind people we met here!