Most Profitable Hawaii Small Business Niches

Most Profitable Hawaii Small Business Niches

Hawaii is the 7th most visited city in the US, according to a recent World Atlas report. Although this exotic tourist destination is driven by hospitality, tourism, and agriculture, there has been a surge in the emergence and proliferation of small businesses in the last two decades. From agriculture and travel to rental services, hospitality, and trade, there’s so much more this city can offer beyond lush green vegetation, exotic beaches, breathtaking sights, and magnificent attractions.

  1. Homestay Services

The good thing about this business niche is that it has a really huge market and just about anyone can do it. You only need to spare a room or two in your posh apartment, get the necessary permits, and you’re good to go. A bed and breakfast business is one of the leading businesses in Hawaii and there’s no shortage of visitors trooping into the state and looking for a nice, cozy bed to lay their heads in after a busy day of non-stop excitement. Be sure to register your business on booking portals online for visibility.

  • Vacation Rental Services

This is assuming you already have a home that you’re willing to put up for rent. Offering it to tourists on a temporary basis is a great way to make some very good income on a continuous basis with very little running capital. Just ensure that amenities are in place and get the necessary paperwork and you’re ready to dive into the flourishing world of vacation rental services.

  • Customized Tour Services

This is another pretty popular business in Hawaii with good turnover as well. Visitors often require certified locals or residents to show them around and help them make the most of their visit, so why not make it official and make some good money too? You can arrange specific and customized travel plans and tours based on the interests of the visitor or tourist. If you have good money, you can set up a charter tour service, a helicopter tour service, or even road trips to different tourist attractions. For low-budget businesses, you can simply find out how to be a tour guide.

  • Travel Agency

More than 10 million people visited Hawaii in 2019 alone, and although post-pandemic stress has slowed things down, the city welcomed almost 2 million visitors in the first quarter of 2022 alone. Today, more than ever, it is pretty easy to set up a travel agency, as you don’t need to own a plane or an airline. All you need is an internet-enabled computer, a functional telephone, and good communication skills. You can set this up in your home and help visitors plan their trips, book flights, hotels, and other rental needs before they even set off. Just be sure you’re duly registered and certified to operate.

  • Taxi Service

Owning a taxi service is something you should also consider if you’re looking to start a business in Hawaii. If you have the money for it, get some durable, gas-efficient cars, friendly and reliable drivers, required registration and permits, and get on with it. On a typical day, there are around 200,000 thousand visitors in Hawaii who need to commute. That is too large a market to ignore, especially considering that it is a potential moneymaker for anyone committed enough to do it.

  • Farming

Hawaii’s rich history of cash crops and vegetation cannot be overlooked. From sugarcane and pineapple to avocados, coffee, macadamia nuts, banana, papaya, guava, and several other crops, Hawaii is notable for its significant cash crops production. If you have arable land that’s lying fallow, you can put those to good use and become a farmer in no time. Although crops like pineapple grow wild in some parts of the Aloha state, having an organized system has a real gap to fill, especially in bars.

  • Restaurant/Bar

Start with choosing the perfect location for the restaurant or bar, draw up the financial requirements, set it up, and get down to business. Restaurants, along with bars and hotels, are big money spinner in Hawaii. Just be sure you have choice recipes and add some local ingredients and dishes on your menu to wow visitors and residents as well.

  • Essential services

Essential services include HVAC, Electricians, Plumbers, Rain Gutter Installation/Repair, and Roofers just to name a few. While most industries were on hold during the Pandemic these services were just too essential to be completely closed. When a pipe breaks and your house is flooding there is zero hesitation to call for help. Post-Pandemic the Essential services industry saw an increase in business due to businesses that closed needed some essential repairs before opening doors once again

Top 7 Hawaii Leading Tourism Activities

A visit to Hawaii should be on everyone’s bucket list. The amazing archipelago is home to some of the world’s most visited Islands, with colorful beaches, breathtaking volcanic mountains, picturesque landscape, unique greenery and wildlife, and a truly relaxing atmosphere. No wonder it plays host to millions of the most adventurous visitors and tourists every year.

If you’re planning a vacation but you have no idea what to do or expect, here’s a guide to help you enjoy the best of your time in Hawaii and get the best value for your money. Here’s a list of the top 7 leading tourist attractions in Hawaii.

  1. Zipline

A high-flying adventure sounds more like it if you’re craving some exhilarating adventure for your next vacation. If you visit Kauai, you can zip over the breathtaking Garden Island and witness its beauty from a bird’s eye view. Glide over beautiful streams, lush forest canopies, gorgeous hills and mountains, and several plantations. Many other parts of Hawaii offer similar activities. Several zipline companies offer great tours for ease and proper guidance. They include Climb Works Keana Farms, Maui Zipline Company, and Flyin Hawaiian Zipline.

  • Helicopter Tours

There’s no better way to suck in the beauty and breath-taking landscape of Hawaii than taking a helicopter ride around some of its beautiful Islands. You’ll see why Hawaii is one of the most sought-after filming locations in the world. Discover pure, untouched natural landscapes and mesmerizing sights that will blow your mind. Some popular helicopter tour companies include Blue Hawaiian Helicopters, Rainbow Helicopters, and Mauna Loa Helicopter Tours Oahu.

  • USS Arizona Memorial, Pearl Harbor

If you’re up for some sober reflection and a trip down memory lane, this is one place you have to visit. Not only is it a reminder of the bravery of the average American,  but also of the story of the Second World War. The Memorial is a gigantic grave site for thousands of lives lost when a Japanese surprise air raid bombed Hawaii on December 7, 1941. The site is available to the public and offers visitors a taste of spectacular history as well as a worthwhile experience.

  • Road to Hana Maui

Craving some dangerous adventure? This road trip has all the perks of a jaw-dropping, adrenaline-pumping action. Known as the world’s 5th most dangerous road, this highway has 59 bridges and as many as 620 curves. These features make for incredibly 007-style turns and maneuvers, as well as very slim bridges that require precision and caution. You may choose to drive through with family and loved ones or join a tour on this highway. There are amazing stops along the way for an amazing view of the landscape that this Island offers.

  • A visit to Waikiki Beach

It is true that Hawaii is home to several amazing beaches, but nothing comes close to the spectacle and splendor of Waikiki Beach. It is one of Hawaii’s most popular tourist attractions and you certainly have to visit. This beautiful stretch also comes fully enriched with many perks like top-rated hotels and restaurants, museums, and cultural sites, making Waikiki Beach a truly trendy location. With great events like outdoor music, surfing, canoe races, hula dancing, and swimming, this spot is one of the world’s most popular tourist attractions.

  • Mountain Tubing

Whether it’s in Kauai or any of the other amazing places with gently-flowing waters, tubing is one of the most exciting activities to engage in as a tourist. You can witness some amazing engineering masterpieces as you float down open canals on a tune. There are amazing flumes and tunnels that run for several miles to explore and experience. The journey to and from these exciting tubing spots also offers some hiking adventure. Tubing is great for the family and you may decide to jump into the pristine swimming hole for a swim.

  • Snorkel/Scuba & Sport Fishing

You should never go to Hawaii without embarking on a snorkel, scuba, and sportfishing charters, especially with the tropical waters calling out your name. Getting into some of the cleanest waters in Hawaii and basking in the presence of vibrant reef fish, turtles, Hong, and many other exotic marine life is a given. You can use any of the snorkel tour or scuba excursion services on any of the Islands as you delve into the underwater world of Hawaii.

What is the State of Hawaii’s Economy Post-Pandemic?

The emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic brought about devastating consequences on economies. With businesses shutting down to flatten the curve and prevent the spread of the virus and economic activities generally crippled, there was a global decline around the world. One of the most affected sectors was tourism. As a major tourist destination, Hawaii recorded huge economic declines across major sectors during the pandemic. In fact, because its economy is heavily driven by tourism, the city was one of the most hit in the US.

According to University of Hawaii Economist Sumner LaCroix, at least 23% of Hawaii’s economy is generated by tourism. By April and May 2020, the unemployment rate surged to more than 24%, up from just two percent by January of that same year. The situation was at the “Great Depression” levels. While the pandemic has eased globally and economies have largely reopened, what exactly is the State of Hawaii’s economy now? How has the economy fared post-pandemic? We’ll look at this by reviewing some key indices.

  1. Employment

Hawaii’s unemployment rate has continued to decline since after the pandemic. In fact, by the fourth quarter of 2020, unemployment had declined to 11.2 percent and by the first quarter of 2021, the unemployment rate dropped further to 6.8 percent. And just when we thought this was impressive, there was a further drop by the end of the fourth quarter of 2021 to less than 4.7 percent and then 3.8 percent by the first quarter of 2022. These statistics provided by the Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism (DBEDT) clearly show an impressive resurgence that came two years earlier than analysts expected.

  • Tourism

There is also a clear sign of a resurgence in the tourism industry of Hawaii. Records of visitor arrivals in the city in the first quarter of 2022 showed an increase of more than 120% from the same period in 2021. The Island welcomed 1.97 million visitors between January and March 2022, up from less than 850,000 people in the same period of the previous year. Daily average visitor figures also went up almost 99% in the same period. The DBEDT further reported that there were 818,268 visitors to the Hawaiian Islands in April 2022, which represented a 96.3% recovery from April 2019.

This was also the highest recovery rate recorded in the archipelago since the pandemic began. The visitors spent a total of $1.6 Billion in April alone compared to $1.32 Billion spent in April 2019. This doesn’t just represent great recovery post-pandemic, but also shows growth compared to pre-COVID figures. It does appear the tourism sector in Hawaii has bounced back and put the broken pieces together.

We spoke to a Maui SEO Agency and they stated they are seeing a significant increase in search volume for tourist activity keywords. As well as an increase in tourism-based companies increasing their digital marketing budgets and Ad spending.

  • Hospitality

The last two and a half years have put immense pressure on Hawaii’s hospitality industry, following COVID restrictions. Hoteliers found renewed hope in the fourth quarter of 2021 as momentum picked up again with revenue per available room figures rising to $145.39 on a 59% occupancy and a daily rate of $246 on average, per STR data. Although this was not yet at par with 2019 figures which stood at $202.62 at an occupancy of 84%, Hawaii’s fourth quarter RevPAR was America’s third highest behind only New York and Miami.

  • Agriculture and Other Sectors

Agriculture is yet another important sector in the Aloha state, taking up almost 30% of the entire land area. Even though its contribution to GDP ranges between 0.3% and 1%, it is a means of livelihood for a significant portion of the state’s population. The pandemic caused a major setback in the sector disrupting activities and forcing farmers to stay at home. Despite this situation, the sector generated around $366 million, and things are getting much better now. Other segments of the economy such as car rentals, travel, trade services, and so on are other very important sectors in Hawaii that have regained momentum.

Though the pandemic led to large-scale job losses, revenue losses, and other devastating effects, it appears the Oahu state is launching back to the path of recovery and growth, with experts projecting record performance for major sectors, including tourism, and travel, hospitality, and trade services.