As the Maui community starts on its road to recovery following the wildfires last week that killed at least 93 and brought destruction to the island, Hawaii’s main tourism board is sounding the alarm on any near-term travel future for a section of the island.
In a message on Sunday, the Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) wrote that travel to West Maui is strongly discouraged for the coming “weeks and months” in light of the impact of last week’s wildfires.
“The collective resources of the government, the West Maui community, and the travel industry must be focused on the recovery of residents who evacuated their homes and businesses,” it wrote.
“Visitors with plans to stay in West Maui in the coming weeks are urged to consider rescheduling their travel plans for when the situation has improved for residents. Hotels in West Maui have temporarily stopped accepting bookings of future reservations.”
The message is different than what the HTA was telling inbound travelers a few days ago, which was to avoid travel to Maui entirely. Still, the HTA is saying that all resources and attention, including that of the travel industry, need to be focused on assisting the recovery of the residents who were forced to evacuate homes and businesses last week.
Most of the hotels in West Maui are still temporarily closed and stopped accepting future bookings. Some others outside of West Maui are open on the island, while even more are housing their employees and families or even some first responders. A list of some of the island’s hotels and their status can be found here.
The HTA is also letting guests know that travel to the other Hawaiian Islands of Kauai, Oahu, Lanai, and Hawaii Island has not been impacted.