Honeymoon and romance travel is a major market for tour operators
specializing in Hawaii. The following is a sampling of what these
operators offer and their thoughts on the market. All rates are per
person, based on double occupancy. For contact numbers, see below.
Certified Vacations Group. Certified operates Continental
Airlines Vacations and Delta Vacations. Says Chris Hamaway,
Certified's general manager for the western region,"We flag all of
our honeymoon guests so that all of our hotels provide champagne
and other amenities to these clients.
"Hawaii fits the mold so well for romance travel. It's tough to
find a place where you'll find better hospitality and service along
with a hotel product that is second to none. And the sheer romantic
quality of the islands adds to a romantic experience."
Continental Airlines Vacations offers a five-night package at
the Royal Kona Resort on the Big Island from $959 from Houston,
$969 from Cleveland and $999 from Newark. The package includes
airfare and rental car, plus discounts on horseback riding and
Delta Vacations features a three-night package at the
Princeville Resort priced from $1,039. The deal includes airfare
from Los Angeles, rental car and discounts on sightseeing and
Classic Custom Vacations. The honeymoon/romance market is, along
with golf, family and seniors, one of four markets in which Hawaii
excels, according to Ron Letterman, president and chief executive
officer of Classic Custom Vacations.
There are numerous sun and sand destinations, but what makes
Hawaii unique is the wealth of things to do and see beyond the
beach, says Letterman. "Hawaii has grand canyons, waterfalls,
rivers, rain forests, volcanoes; and in Hawaii there is a
refinement that doesn't exist at many other beach resorts, plus a
quality of facilities that is extraordinary."
Classic Custom Vacations publishes a Travel Agents Guide
containing a consolidated listing of travel specials including
honeymoon/romance packages. Among these is a seven-night honeymoon
package at the Maui Prince Hotel at $1,008, including a dinner for
two, champagne and convertible rental car.
Fantasy Holidays. "Honeymoons in Hawaii are big business; Hawaii
is everyone's dream of paradise," says president John DeLeo.
"People have a tendency to think that the islands are very
expensive but they don't have to be as expensive as you think."
Among Fantasy Holiday's collection of Hawaii properties are the
Marc Suite Waikiki Royal with rates of $62 to $123 a night, the
Embassy Vacation Resort Kaanapali on Maui at $143 to $266 a night,
the Kauai Coconut Beach Resort at $53 to $82 a night and the Royal
Waikoloan on the Big Island at $69 to $111 a night.
Pleasant Hawaiian Holidays. The company's honeymoon program
includes a room upgrade, based on availability, and welcome
champagne for honeymoon couples, says Karen Schulz-Hughes, vice
president of marketing and product development.
"All the agent has to do is let us know their client is a
honeymoon couple [to qualify for the honeymoon program]," she
The tour operator features a wide variety of hotels in all
prices ranges in its Hawaii honeymoon program. Seven night packages
include the Outrigger Waikiki at $975 from Los Angeles and $1,189
from New York; the Hilton Hawaiian Village on Oahu at $1,335 from
Los Angeles and $1,549 from New York, and the Ritz-Carlton Kapalua
on Maui at $1,283 from Los Angeles and $1,541 from New York. The
packages include air fare, flower lei greeting, private transfers
on Oahu and daily convertible car rental on Maui.
Runaway Tours. Ed Jackson, Runaway's president and chief
executive officer, says his company does a tremendous amount of
honeymoon business to Hawaii. "More and more travel agencies are
focusing on the market and doing a good job," says Jackson. To help
encourage them the company is developing a new honeymoon brochure
that can be customized for individual travel agencies.
"The brochure can basically make the agency a Hawaii honeymoon
specialist because it becomes their brochure, bearing the agency's
name in partnership with Runaway," he says. The new brochure will
be available this fall.
Among Runaway's honeymoon packages is three nights at the Kahala
Mandarin Oriental on Oahu, ranging in price from $435 to $840 or
seven nights from $1,015 to $1,960. A $75 lunch or dinner credit is
included. A three-night package at the Four Seasons at Wailea,
Maui, is priced at $477 to $1,008 with seven nights at $1,113 to
$2,352.Tour Firm Reservation Numbers
Classic Custom Vacations, (800) 221-3949.
Continental Vacations, (800) 634-5555.
Delta Vacations, (800) 221-6666.
Fantasy Holidays, (800) 645-2555.
Pleasant Hawaiian Holidays, (800) 242-9244.
Runaway Tours, (800) 622-0723.