Now that I’ve been back in Germany for 2 months, the tan is slowly fading and the time in Hawaii seems like a dream. It was like paradise!
The decision to go to Hawaii was made quickly. I applied for the winter semester in December and thus had a lot of time to take care of organizational matters. Of course, it is also possible to apply later, but then you can get stressed. MicroEDU provided really good support with the application and answered every question immediately.
I booked a return flight at once. However, I will do it differently if I do a semester abroad again, because on the one hand I have rebooked anyway (just had to extend it) and on the other hand it was cheaper overall with those who booked the return flight from Hawaii. I arrived in Hawaii 2 weeks before the start of the semester and first moved to the Waikiki Beachside Hostel for a week. The hostel is… well… not exactly great. But there were many other students who were also looking for an apartment. Read more student reviews on Educationvv.
That brings me to the next one, namely the desperate search for an apartment! After reading in some field reports that it was not a problem at all to find an apartment, I was very surprised that this was not the case with me and my fellow students at all. The week in the hostel was pure desperation, because a suitable apartment in Waikiki is really expensive. There are also some fraudsters. But I wouldn’t do it any differently because it really welded together. And in the end everyone found an apartment. I moved into a 1 bedroom apartment for $ 1,500 in Waikiki with another student.
Future students can only be recommended to go to Hawaii as early as possible before the start of the semester! You have to use the time you are allowed to be there:)
The HPU is in the middle of Honolulu. It’s incredibly cold in the rooms, so always take a jacket with you! I took the following courses
- Consumer Behavior: is ok, you don’t learn a lot, you have to write 1 midterm, 1 finalterm, 2 presentations and a group assignment.
- Intro Hotel & Travel Industry Management: Very, very simple, also tests and presentations, very nice professor
- Applied Methods of Hotel & Travel Industry Management: very simple, test, presentation. We also did an “internship” in a hotel, restaurant or similar for one day. A good opportunity to establish contacts if you want to work in this branch.
- Beginning Hawaiian: very interesting, you learn the Hawaiian language and a little bit about the history and culture. I can only recommend it!
It was mandatory to be present everywhere, which is really annoying. I also had a pretty stupid schedule, so I would rather choose the courses so that you have Monday and / or Friday free:) Wednesday free is also very good, because on Tuesdays you always go to the Mooses 🙂
On the subject of books: I bought a book in a subject together with another student (about 140 dollars!), We photographed the book with a mirror reflex and returned it:) Luckily, because I didn’t read anything in it anyway.
Life in Hawaii
Living in Hawaii is indescribable! The beach right outside the door, the sun shines all the time and there is so much to see. Waikiki is also great for going out, because it is a tourist stronghold and there is something going on every day. After a while, however, you also get to know the downsides because there are, for example, a lot of homeless people. Therefore you should definitely look at the whole island, Waikiki is actually not really Hawaii. Stairways to Heaven is especially nice on Oahu! Must have done:). The other islands must also be visited:
- Kauai: the garden island, with the Na Pali Coast (Kalalau Trail!), Queensbath, Polihale Beach.
- Maui: Pipiwai Trail, Olivine Pools, La Perouse Bay, sunrise on Haleakala (very cold!).
- Big Island: Captain Cook, sunrise or sunset on Mauna Kea, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, turtles on Punaluu Beach, Green Sand Beach.
We bought a tent at Walmart, rented a car and then drove around the island every now and then. A little tip: Walmart takes pretty much everything back, even after months and you get the full amount back
It was very difficult to say goodbye to Hawaii. I would love to go back again because I miss the sun, the beach, the people and the relaxed life. If you can, take the chance and do a semester abroad in Hawaii!
Aloha e mahalo nui loa.