Traveling to Hawaii during January
Weather, Crowds, & Prices for January
When booking your Hawaiian vacation, the time of year you plan a visit can make a difference. You may run into a bit more rain or find special events that might be more appealing at certain times of the year. When it comes to Hawaii, January is one of the best months to plan a visit for many reasons.
Traveling to the islands since the COVID-19 Pandemic has drastically changed. For the most up-to-date information and rules, please visit our Hawaii Travel Restrictions article.
Hawaii Weather in January
The weather is usually the number one thing tourists worry about no matter where they are going. That's probably a reason why Hawaii is so famous. It has warm weather throughout the year, including January. When visiting at this time, you will see tropical flowers in bloom and can bask in balmy tropical temperatures in the low 80s. You might be surprised that at this time of year the nights get a little cooler and drop into the mid to high 60s in some regions, but it’s nothing a light sweater can’t solve.
Where you are staying or visiting the islands will also affect the temperature, and sometimes, it has a drastic impact. For example, the Volcano area on the Big Island can get quite chilly at night. The higher elevations on either Maui or the Big Island might even call for a jacket and pants, particularly at the summit of volcanoes. Meanwhile, down at the beach, the ocean is always warm for swimming.
The only downside is that January follows Hawaii’s rainiest month, December. So, you will see slightly higher chances of rain. Many travelers report no issues with rain showers while visiting the islands in January as there’s plenty of sunshine to allow for outdoor activities. There is no guarantee that any place you travel will be rain-free, so head out with an umbrella to help you avoid getting caught by surprise during your sightseeing adventures.
It also depends on which of the islands you will be visiting. We always advise people to take advantage of and see as many of the islands as possible. However, if you are staying at just one, you will find that the leeward side of the islands tends to be drier. Also, just like anywhere in the tropics, daily rain showers are bound to happen, so go with it. You can encounter a heavy rain shower that lasts for 10 minutes just about anywhere and anytime on the islands, but it’s nothing to worry about.
Hawaii Crowds in January
If you choose to travel the first week of January, you will run into the last stragglers of the holiday season. Another favorite week or weekend is Martin Luther King Jr. Day, which hits the third Monday of January. People are taking advantage of the extra day to extend their vacation. The rest of the month is slightly below the average, which makes it a good choice for booking a Hawaiian vacation.
Hawaii Costs in January
When it comes to your hotel stay, avoiding New Year’s Day will help you find reasonable rates. Higher prices arise in the first week of January due to the holiday season. Beyond that, the rest of the month seems to sit within the annual average of about $250 per night. Air travel is far more difficult to predict as it changes almost daily. You can find good fares in January thanks to increasing competition amongst airlines. Your online searches will help you narrow down your options and find the best possible prices, depending on your budget and the airlines.
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Hawaii Events & Highlights in January
There are a few reasons you might specifically want to book your Hawaiian vacation in January, including:
- Thousands of humpback whales migrate to the area in the winter, making January a peak month to observe them in their natural habitat.
- If you love golf, the Hyundai Tournament of Champions takes place in Maui in January.
- It’s the height of surfing tournament season in January as Oahu’s famous big waves pound the north shores throughout the month.
- Another event you should check out and celebrate during the month of January is the Chinese New Year which each of the main islands puts on.
As far as we're concerned, there's not a bad month to visit Hawaii. January certainly presents its fair share of reasons to book your vacation at the beginning of the year.