Buying travel at Costco was something we’d never considered until Waikiki’s soaring hotel prices prompted us to think, not ‘outside the box’ but ‘to the big box’. We bought a ‘package’ from Costco travel that included three night’s hotel accommodations at the Aston Waikiki Beach Hotel, round-trip transfers and a lei greeting.
I promised that I’d report in. . .so here’s how it went:
Shuttle representatives would meet us at our gate (we’d been instructed to send flight number and arrival time in advance). Our flight was 40 minutes early, yet there they were, just as promised!
We’d be greeted with a lei, those fragrant symbols of Hawaii.
And sure enough we had the traditional draping of the flowers over the neck and the embrace that is part of the aloha welcome.
Our bags were collected and we were among only six parties to board the special shuttle which resulted in a quick arrival at our hotel, which is literally across the street from the beach.
We would be in a partial ocean view room. The 645-room hotel, built in 1968, has undergone two renovations since Aston Hotels took over its management in 2001. Some recent TripAdvisor grumblings had us a bit nervous about what we might find there.
We were certainly prepared for the back of the building and leaning off the balcony. Not so!
We had a straight on view of Waikiki Beach (that’s the Royal Hawaiian Hotel – the ‘pink palace’ in the distance). It was one of the best views we’ve ever had in Waikiki. We’d lucked out and because the hotel was as full as it was we’d actually been put into an ‘ocean view’ room!
How it compared:
Our package price was $614, which included taxes.
Had we purchased the shuttle separately: $48 ($24/p/p)
Lei greeting (we’d have skipped) but its cost: $46 ($23/p/p)
A quick check of the hotel’s web site shows that booking three nights this week would have cost $795 for a partial ocean view and $874 for the ocean view; both inclusive of taxes.
A good deal, we decided. We won't hesitate to continue travel shopping at Costco.