There is no denying it – Hawaii is a shopper’s paradise, with an abundance of bargains to be had. The open-air Ala Moana Center just outside Waikiki has nearly 300 shops and restaurants, including department stores like Macy's and Neiman Marcus, high-fashion retailers and beachwear outlets. Another place to check out is Waikele Premium Outlets at Waipahu, about a 40-minute drive from Honolulu. You can jump on Hawaii’s public bus service, TheBus, organise a shuttle or tour, or hire a car to get there. There are a range of outlets and factory stores, including Calvin Klein, Guess and Levi’s. There are also children’s stores, jewellery and accessories shops and leather and luggage stores.
For Hawaiian shirts, loose muumuu dresses, beachwear, souvenirs, accessories and gifts, look no further than Hilo Hattie, which has outlets on Oahu, Maui, Hawaii, The Big Island, and Kauai. Or you can just take a wander along Waikiki’s boulevards,where there is a large variety of stores to entice you.
Our top picks
1170 Auahi Street, Honolulu
This upscale fashion outlet in Honolulu sells clothes, shoes, jewellery, handbags, watches and other accessories for men, women and children at heavily discounted prices. Think labels like Coach, Armani and Burberry. It may take some time to sort through the racks, but it’s worth it.
Various Locations on Oahu
This discount retailer has returned to Hawaii after a 15-year absence and will open its fifth Hawaiian store at Kapolei Commons in West Oahu in 2015. It already has stores at Ward Village Shops, Pearl City Gateway Shopping Center and Pearlridge Center Uptown shopping mall.
Shop like a local
When it comes to markets, you can’t go past the swap meet held at Aloha Stadium, 20 minutes outside Waikiki. Families have been gathering at the outdoor market since 1979 and it now has more than 400 vendors selling clothes, vintage antiques, jewellery, souvenirs, art and handicrafts. It operates three days a week on Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday from 9am to 3pm. On Maui, head to the swap meet held next to the car park at Maui College in Kahului every Saturday morning. Here you can meet local farmers and craftspeople, buy fresh fruit, homemade banana bread, handcrafted jewellery, handpainted t-shirts and stock up on souvenirs. Hilo Farmer's Markets on the Hawaii, The Big Island is another great place to meet the locals and buy fresh produce including strawberries, papaya, homemade jams and macadamia nuts.