• Whereas Hilo is the most affordable metropolis in Hawaii to retire, it’s costly compared to mainland US retirement locations.
  • Hilo boasts gorgeous views and receives 142 inches of rain yearly, attracting fewer vacationers and providing a quieter retirement setting.
  • Hilo’s housing prices are round 53% decrease than Honolulu, making it an reasonably priced various for these decided to retire in Hawaii.

Usually talking, Hawaii shouldn’t be an affordable state to retire. Based on Forbes, Hawaii is the most expensive state with the very best price of residing and has the bottom disposable earnings of any state. However for many who do select to retire there, it appears that evidently Hilo is the most affordable metropolis for retirement in Hawaii.

Hilo often is the most reasonably priced metropolis to retire in Hawaii, however there are some catches (not least that it is the number one rainiest city in the Big Island). Hilo is a small however exceptional metropolis and one which was built on ancient lava flows from Manua Loa. Let’s take a look at why you would possibly think about retiring in Hilo, how bills stack up versus different cities in Hawaii, and a few cheaper options on the mainland.

Why You Ought to Contemplate Retiring In Hilo, Hawaii

Hilo is the most important metropolis on the Huge Island and is positioned on a quieter a part of the coast

Hawaii, Rainbow Falls in Hilo

Hawaii, Rainbow Falls in Hilo

Hilo is the most important metropolis on Hawaii’s Huge Island (the Island of Hawaii) with a inhabitants of 44,000 and is served by the Hilo Worldwide Airport. Regardless of its identify, the Hilo Worldwide Airport doesn’t presently host any worldwide flights and even flights to the mainland United States.

Most flights come from Honolulu (but additionally Maui) and the airport is simply serviced by Hawaiian Airways and Southwest Airways, which means that passengers coming from the mainland nonetheless have to transit by Honolulu.

Whereas small, Hilo is the most important settlement in Hawaii off the island of Oahu. Hilo is a surprising metropolis with majestic views of Hilo Bay, Mauna Loa (an active volcano), and Mauna Kea (a dormant volcano).

Hilo will get 142 inches of rain yearly in comparison with solely 9 inches the place the resorts at Waikoloa are on the Huge Island and 30 inches for the USA as a complete.

Hilo is essentially remoted from the primary vacationer areas of Hawaii and even the Huge Island. It will get lower than half the guests that the Huge Island’s western coast will get. That is partly as a result of Hilo receives extra rain and fewer sunshine than different elements of the island whereas additionally having fewer sandy and swimmable seashores.

A view of Hilo, Hawaii and Mauna Kea on a clear day

A view of Hilo, Hawaii and Mauna Kea on a transparent day

Whereas which will sound like a foul factor, a quieter metropolis could also be extra fascinating for retirement.


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Hilo Is The Least expensive Important Metropolis In Hawaii

Home costs are round 53% decrease in Hilo than in Honolulu

Aerial View of Runway at Hilo International Airport, Big Island, Hawaii

Aerial View of Runway at Hilo Worldwide Airport, Huge Island, Hawaii

Based on Forbes Advisor, the cost of living in Hilo is around 23% less than in the main Hawaiian city of Honolulu. However the bills usually are not even; some are a lot decrease, whereas others are literally greater. The price of transportation in Hilo is round 11% greater and utilities are a whopping 44% greater.

The price of housing in Hilo is less expensive than in Honolulu (one of many ways to retire to Hawaii on a budget is to search for cities with extra reasonably priced housing). Properties in Hilo are likely to price 53% lower than in Honolulu.

The Living Wage Calculator provides a better breakdown of the prices of residing in Hilo.

Indicative Prices Honolulu vs Hilo:






House Value

$1,674, 195


Residence Hire



Complete Vitality



For these decided to retire in Hawaii, Hilo is a wonderful various to dearer — and extra tourist-focused — cities.


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Hilo, Hawaii Is Not Aggressive When It Comes To Low cost Retirement Locations In The US

Hilo is idyllic and reasonably priced in comparison with different locations in HI, however mainland US has cheaper choices

Whereas Hilo often is the least expensive metropolis in Hawaii to retire, it’s removed from low cost. The principle draw to retiring in Hilo is that it’s the least expensive place in Hawaii — it’s a place of alternative for these decided to retire in Hawaii.

However there are many different cheap places to retire in the United States, together with some heat cities with beachfronts like South Carolina’s Myrtle Seashore, for these not prepared (or ready) to afford an island retirement in Hawaii.

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