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Banana Bungalow Maui, Wailuku

3.0 stars


Travel tip for Banana Bungalow Maui

Like a lot of hostels the Banana Bungalow in Maui has a 'no locals allowed' policy. I actually agree with the policy from the perspective of an international backpacker because locals that live in hostels are almost always really poor and that means that they might be more prone to theft or panhandling. Not allowing people in to a hostel who might sacrifice the vibe of the hostel is a really good idea.

However, I spent a month in the Banana Bungalow only a few years ago and one thing I noticed was that they turned away a lot of Americans from the mainland of the USA as well, not just Maui locals. If you are American and heading for the Banana Bungalow in Maui you will have to produce a copy of a plane ticket that demonstrates when you are leaving the island in order to stay here. They have a 'travellers only' philosophy and, whatever you do, DO NOT tell them that you are coming to the island looking for work. They will not admit you and you will have to find another place to stay unfortunately. [more ]

Banana Bungalow Maui...FREE* TOURS

*Though the Banana Bungalow in Maui offers free tours, as I learned during my stay there in 2006, they are only 'sort of' free. The tour escort is not a paid member of staff and he/she will pressure you for gratuities. One tour guide told me that they expected $20 USD for a full day tour.

Naturally hostellers are budget travellers and when they hear "FREE" they don't expect or like to pay "$20" instead. Many of the hostellers gave puny tips or stiffed the tour guide entirely who in turn, got very angry. This lead to disdain among some of the staff who were generally irritable and cranky.

While I paid less than $500 USD for a month long stay and while the tours were very cheap still, in even consideration of the tips I paid, my advice would be to stay here one week, go on all seven tours and factor in to your budget about $50 USD to pay for the gratuities. [more ]

Walkable from the airport, poor security!

Besides my other post about the so-called free* tours there are a couple other points I think that travellers should know about this hostel.

I stayed here in April of 2006 and at that time, they did not have any security lockers which I consider basic for dorm style hostels. A girl who was staying actually did get robbed of her pack, which included all of her identification and her money. In a slightly seedy neighbourhood, but not all that bad for the USA, the hostel, predictably, took no responsibility.

On a different note, you can walk to the hostel from the Maui airport, if, like me, you look to save a few dollars. It will take you a good hour, partly uphill, but cabs are the most expensive form of transportation known to man, so it might be a good idea. You could try calling the hostel for free pickup service as that is what they provided to me, but it is touch-and-go, not guaranteed. [more ]

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Further Ratings (Average 3.5 of 5):

  • Tripadvisor: 3.50 of 5

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1. Maui Ocean Center 0.21 mi
2. Kepaniwai Park 0.21 mi
3. Iao Valley 4.48 mi
See all Attractions in Wailuku
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