This $40 billion company has expanded to Hawaii offering locals and tourists a new transpirtation alternative.
The service offers personal door to door pick up and is only available through smartphones (not tablets or laptops)
An Uber ride from Waikiki to HNL airport, for example, runs $23 during non-peak hours (9am to 2pm), and $53 during peak hours. A ride from Waikiki to the Kahala Hotel only runs $8 (much cheaper than the $25 valet-only parking).
And with the holiday mall parking a driver's nightmare and with the beach parking at its peak during the summers, Uber can be a fast and economical option for locals and tourists.
Cars typically arrive within five minutes, the phone app will give you a fare approximation, and a photo of the driver and car alerts you to know who to expect. The driver will call or text you when they are close by, and PayPal or credit cards are used so that no cash is exchanged. (Note: the quoted uber fare includes tip).
Note on Surge Charge: In high demand tourist areas (eg Waikiki) where Uber drivers are constantly busy, you will likely be charged a "Surge Rate" which can run between 1.5-2.5 times the normal rate. You can either wait a few minutes until the Surge Pricing drops (and more cars become available), or catch a cab or call Ubers competitor, Lyft.com.
Important HNL Airport Info:
Uber is *not* allowed to pick up passengers from the HNL arrival terminals. The company has, however, partnered up with a local taxi service and together they you will see the Uber Taxi option on your phone app. The thing to keep in mind is that unfortunately your ride will cost the same as a regular cab--which can be expensive. (Eg a 4 mile ride from HNL to Lilihas Bakery ran $22.) If you do choose Uber Taxi, the driver will need to walk to meet you at the baggage claim and then walk you to where their car is parked, usually a 1 minute walk. For rides to the airport, Uber *is* allowed to drop off passengers at the departure terminals. From Waikiki, non peak hours (10am to 2pm), allow 20 min to get to HNL. The 14 mile Uber ride from Waikiki to HNL runs around $23.)