Traveling to Hawaii is certainly not as easy as it used to be, but in a recent survey conducted by  the Hawaii Tourism Authority it was found that out of the 495 visitors that were surveyed 85% said their trip was excellent, and 94% said their trip either met or exceeded expectations. This is great to see, as it means that the number of tourists making the journey to Hawaii in 2021 should continue to rise.

While tourism numbers are not nearly what they were in 2019, the Pre-travel Testing Program allows anyone traveling to Hawaii to bypass the 10-day mandatory quarantine, which would make any vacation immensely more enjoyable. Out of the visitors that were surveyed, 79% said that their pre-travel testing experience went smoothly, and the protocols were clear. The remaining 21% reported various issues with pre-travel testing including difficulty finding a trusted testing partner, and not receiving their results within the specified window.

We will continue to look forward to a rise in tourism numbers as the local economy recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic. To look at the full report, follow this link.In an interview with The Maui News, the Chief Economist with the Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism Eugene Tian stated that nearly 30% of the homes that were purchased in the better part of 2020 were purchased by out-of-state residents. Of those buyers 27.4% were from the mainland, and 1.4% were international. While this number seems high, out-of-state residents usually purchase nearly 50% of the available real estate on Maui.

The data is still being assembled for the demographic breakdown of these out-of-state buyers, as it is unclear whether most of those purchases were made by investors, or those seeking to move their principal residence to Hawaii now that most employees and business owners can work from home.

The three aspects of the current real estate market that appear to show no signs of slowing are low inventory levels, low interest rates on new mortgages and a climbing median sales price for both condos and single family homes. In December, the Realtors Association of Maui recorded the lowest inventory ever since they began keeping records in 2010. New construction is still very active on Maui, with several affordable housing projects as well as luxury condominium complexes set to be completed  between now and 2022.

To read the full interview The Maui News did with Eugene Tian click here.
Due to the spike in COVID-19 cases on Maui, Governor Ige gave Mayor Michael Victorino the authority to amend the current emergency rules. The new rules go into effect today. Here are the highlights.

- Retail occupancy is now limited to 30% to allow more room for social distancing.

- Bars and restaurants are now required to close at 10pm or earlier. Drive-throughs, non-liquor related takeout and room service are all exempt from this new rule.

In addition to pre-travel testing requirements for both inter-island and transpacific travelers, they are also now required to download either the AlohaSafe Alert app or another Google-Apple Exposure Notification System app. Travelers can also enable their exposure notification setting on their phone.

Face coverings must now be worn while walking to and from the beach or pool. They can only be removed once you are stationary and socially distanced from the people around you.

-Even if the venue is outdoors, a mask must be worn at gyms, yoga studios, and wellness centers.

While these rules mentioned  above are slightly different from rules that were already in place, it’s important to keep yourself informed on the latest developments coming out of the Mayor’s office.
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Issue 1067 August 16th, 2023


Maui Devastated By Wildfires 


Thank you to everyone that has reached out to our family to check in with us and see how we are all doing during this tragic time.  We are all safe.  We are so lucky.  So many others are not.  As I sit here at my computer, thinking about which hot buys to choose on our beautiful island of Maui, it’s heartbreaking to think about all those in Lahaina that lost their homes and their loved ones.  There were also people that lost their homes in Kula and Olinda due to the wildfires.  Properties on our MLS system have been canceled because they no longer exist.  Therefore, today’s newsletter is about a call of action to help those in our community affected by this horrific event.  


There are thousands of people left homeless today due to the devastating wildfires in West Maui and Kula.  We have families, teachers, first responders, and friends in our community that we personally know asking us for help finding them long-term housing.  They’ve already applied with FEMA for help, but are afraid they will not be able to find more stable housing for a long-term rental of 6 months to a year.  Please let us know if you have a property on Maui that is vacant and would consider renting it for 6 months or longer.


For those needing a temporary place to live, Hawaii Relief Fire Program has an available inventory list.  If you would like to provide temporary housing, even if it’s just for a couple of weeks, go to their website

As of now, the Hyatt Regency - Kaanapali has been taking in displaced residents.  Andaz Wailea and Marriott - Wailea also have rooms available.  All residents must have a FEMA ID.  Go to


If you want to make a monetary donation, here are some credible websites you could go to and donate online:


Hawaii Community Foundation


Maui Food Bank


Maui Humane Society


If you are on the island and would like to make a donation, our company, Coldwell Banker Island Properties, has been taking donations and sending them directly to the folks in the West Maui area and our South Maui Gym shelter.  You can drop off your donations at our Kukui Mall location at 1819 S. Kihei Road, Suite D-111, Kihei, HI  96753.  As of this moment, the needs are all baby items such as diapers, wipes, formula, baby foods, baby snacks, and etc. 


Our hearts go out to all of those affected by this tragedy and to our Maui community.  Check in with your loved ones and your friends.  We love you Maui!  #MauiStrong

Mahalo Nui Loa,

Ken Smith R(S), Melissa Smith R(B), Gregory Smith R(B) 



Our community is filled with so much Aloha!  This Uber driver just gave my friend a free ride to the Maui airport today.  Bless his heart!


*We will not be posting another newsletter for the next 30 days.  Let us know if you need help in any way.


The Smith Team
(808) 572-0866
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Coldwell Banker Island Properties
#B-35 3750 Wailea Alanui Drive
Wailea, Hawaii 96753

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