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Want to help Maui rebuild?

visit now, not later…

I have a message I’m really passionate about sharing with you: how you can truly help Maui recover and rebuild in the wake of the devastating fires in Lahaina

The resilient spirit of aloha in Maui’s residents has really shone since the fires, but they need us now more than ever to help them recover from a new crisis: the tourism their economy relies on has all but disappeared. As travelers and conscientious global citizens, we have the opportunity to make a difference – simply by visiting this fall.

(We can get you there for a fall visit. Just reach out here.)

Maui is open, and they need us to visit NOW, not next year…to rebuild their economy and their lives.

photo of a heart-shaped pink lei on a beach

We understand there may be some hesitation, because we felt the same way when we were asked to visit for a meeting last week, just 25 days after the fires. There was concern about backlash, given the public animosity towards tourists during the fires, and messages from many well-meaning celebrities. But we decided to join our colleagues for the week-long meeting (postponed for years due to the pandemic), and it was one of the best decisions we’ve ever made.

While we did some deeply rewarding service by bringing supplies, prepping hygiene kits and volunteering at shelters, we spoke to many locals who expressed that their most urgent need was for tourists to return

The island is losing millions of dollars daily, hotels are struggling with occupancy rates as low as 20%, and once-bustling airports are completely dead, with rental cars lined up back to back on grass fields due to low demand. Restaurants that are notoriously difficult to book, like Mama’s Fish House, are now accepting walk-ins. Tour operators have openings, and the island is more than eager to welcome travelers.

Hospitality workers, from servers to restaurant hosts, have opened their homes to strangers: the thousands of survivors from Lahaina who have lost everything. They still have to pay rent, mortgages, car payments, and for childcare. We ran into numerous people at our hotel who said if our group had not been there, they would not have been able to pay their rent or their mortgage that month. 

We talked to people who worked in shops in the upcountry and were having honest conversations with their owners, asking, “Should they go on unemployment?” “Do they stay?” 

It’s that dire. Maui’s economy is hanging in the balance. They need us now. 

Yes, we need to travel to Maui now, this fall…don’t wait until next year. 

One person we talked to said, “The fires are so sad and terrible, but losing our economy the way we are right now is going to be catastrophic if we can’t change it.” They also talked very candidly about celebrities who have been outspoken about ‘no tourism’ and while they are backpedaling now, the damage is already done. 

This is the time to go to show our neighbors in Hawaii and our fellow Americans that we care and we’re supporting them by being there. Of course, Lahaina is closed and will remain closed, but the rest of West Maui will reopen on October 8th.

Here are some of the amazing things available to you when you visit this fall: 

  • Gorgeous oceanfront resorts like Grand Wailea, where we stayed.
  • Boating excursions, snorkeling, paragliding helicopters and more.
  • Upcountry, which includes lavender farms, as well as quaint little towns with great shopping and restaurants. 
  • Walking trails over beautiful hilly Hawaiian countryside right outside your door.
  • Sunsets that top anything we’ve seen, from Costa Rica to Tuscany.
  • Eclectic bars full of energy, serving delicious ocean vodka, a distillery with amazing views, a great sports bar for fall football, and even a popular Irish bar!

There is much, much more to tell, and we are so excited to share this beautiful place with you. All you have to do is reach out and tell us your vision so we can get started on making it happen. 

Maui is open, and they need us more than ever. 

By visiting this beautiful island, we can help rebuild its economy, support its resilient residents, and show our solidarity with our fellow Americans in need. 

So, let’s book that trip, explore the stunning landscapes, and make a positive impact on the lives of the people who call Maui home. Together, we can rebuild Maui and create a brighter future for this incredible part of our country.

Yours in the spirit of aloha,

Amy Westerman
The Curated Travel Collection