We fell in love with Maui on our 8 night spring break trip. So in love, that we are headed back a second year in a row, this time for 9 nights! Maui is costly, so using points, 5th night free, suite upgrades, free daily breakfast, free daily cocktails really help offset the expenses of this magical island! We used Marriott Bonvoy points and then used suite-upgrades for the hotel. By doing this, we saved almost $18,000 and enjoyed a huge ocean front suite with a separate king bedroom, 2 bathrooms, 2 balconies, sofa bed and rollaway. Our out of pocket cost for the hotel was the daily resort fee ($300 for 8 nights), that’s it.
We flew direct on United Airlines from Chicago to Maui. We didn’t use points for this portion because the point ratio per ticket were extremely high. However, we used our Chase Sapphire Reserve credit card and earned 3x points per $1 spent. We did get good rates by chosing to travel on a Wednesday. Check out Momondo.com flight engine to explore which day of the week is the most cost effective. You can save alot by doing this.
We stayed at the newly renovated Wailea Beach Resort, a Marriott property. We discovered staying on this side of the island provided much more sun! The resort’s grounds and rooms were absolutely gorgeous. We started every morning with a long walk along the ocean shore, then stopped for our complimentary breakfast for 2. My husband I were addicted to the fresh fruit Acai bowls, so we brought the free breakfast (pastries and fresh fruit) back to the room for our kids. After breakfast each day, we’d drive our rented jeep to Snorkel Bob’s to pick up beach chairs, umbrellas and boogie boards and then head to explore one of the amazing beaches. We’d adventure usually until lunch time and then head back to our resort. By exploring each morning we were able to skip the 6a save pool chairs-haha. Once lunch was over, there were always an abundance of available chairs at the resort pools.
The property has 3 nearby golf courses, spa, gym, kid’s club, game room, movie rooms. There are several pools on property; an adult only pool, kids pool with waterslides and then 2 family pools. As we were on spring break, we hung out at the family pools and loved the cabanas facing the ocean.
photo courtesy of the hotelphoto courtesy of the hotel
photo courtesy of the hotelphoto courtesy of the hotel
Haleakala National Park. Absolute MUST do…we chose to experience Haleakala the first morning because we figured we’d be severely jet legged with the time difference. We drove our rented jeep at 3am to reach the top of Haleakala National Park before sunrise. Note, you must log into the Mt. Haleakala government website and buy a pass for $1.00, 3 mos. in advance, you will not be allowed up without the pass. It is life changing beautiful, but freezing. Pack layers, winter gloves, hats and also ask your hotel for blankets.
Road to Hana. Top 15 stops: Ho’okipa Beach Park, Twin Falls, Huelo Lookout,Maui Garden of Eden, Keanae Peninsula, Wailua Valley State Wayside, Pua’a Ka’a Falls, Hanawi Falls, Nahiku Marketplace, Wai’anapanapa State Park, Hana Town, Hamoa Beach, Wailua Falls, ‘Ohe’o Gulch aka “Seven Sacred Pools”, Back Side of Haleakala
McKenna, Kanapali, Wailea, Black Sand Beach, Napili, and Baldwin Beach (turtles)…however turtles are everywhere.
We did 2 excursions through a company called Sail Trilogy (highly recommend): snorkeling at Molokini and a separate whale watch sunset cruise.
photo courtesy of the hotel
photo courtesy of Old Lahina Luau
Best Luau on the island is in Lahina- Old Lahina Luau, but our resort luau was great too.
Restaurants we really enjoyed were Andaz Hotel-Morimoto, Monkeypod Kitchen, Grand Wailea-Humuhumu, Merrimans Kapalua at sunset, Four Seasons-Duo Steak & Seafood and Lahina Fish Company.
View from Duo
View from Humuhumu
Costco is located right by the airport. Load up on bottled water, alcohol/wine, snacks, etc.
Pack your yetis. We made cocktails in our room and brought to the pool after sunset while kids enjoyed a late night swim.
Snorkel Bobs Gear- less than a mile from hotel: rent beach umbrellas, boogie boards, coolers, beach chairs, etc.- beach hopping was our favorite and is very inexpensive way to see much of Maui.
Bring your own snorkel gear.
Bring water proof hiking sandals and rain ponchos.
Bring a rash guard. The sun is intense and you’ll end up spending $60+ for rash guards on Maui.
If you sign up for the Marriott Bonvoy credit card through our link: you’ll get the 75,000 sign up bonus points plus an extra 20,000 points for signing up under me :). That’s equivalent to 2 night stay. And with Marriott you get a free night for every 5 nights when you use your points.
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Oh Maui, we love you and cannot wait to get back!
Tiffany is truly a credit card point guru. She was very patient and helped my husband and I navigate our credit card point game.
WE’VE SAT ON THOUSANDS OF POINTS FOR YEARS WITH NO CLUE HOW TO REALLY USE THEM. TIFFANY COACHED US HOW TO COMBINE OUR POINTS, TRANSFER POINTS AND ADD MORE POINTS THROUGH CREDIT CARD SIGN-ON BONUSES. AWESOME SERVICE.
WE OWN A SMALL BUSINESS AND HAVE ALWAYS WRITTEN CHECKS OR USED OUR DEBIT CARD EARNING ZERO TRAVEL REWARDS. WE’VE CHANGED OUR WHOLE WAY OF MANAGING MONEY AND ARE ON OUR WAY TO A FREE LUXURY VACATION THANKS TO TIFFANY.
TIFFANY HELPED MY HUSBAND AND I EARN A VACATION TO CROATIA BY USING SPECIFIC TRAVEL CREDIT CARDS ON OUR DAUGHTER’S WEDDING. WE HAD PLANNED TO WRITE CHECKS TO ALL OF THE VENDORS, SO GLAD WE MADE A 1:1 COACHING CALL.
WITH TIFFANY’S GUIDANCE, we EARNED 400,000 CREDIT CARD POINTS BUT WE DIDN’T KNOW HOW BEST TO USE THEM. WE HIRED HER TO PLAN OUR TRIP USING A COMBINATION OF POINTS, MILES AND CASH (CREDIT CARD). HIRING HER WAS THE BEST MONEY I’VE EVER SPENT. SHE WENT WAY ABOVE AND BEYOND. PARIS HERE WE COME.