What Documents Are Needed to Travel to Hawaii?

The island of Hawaii is one of the 50 United States and a popular travel destination for people all over the world. Because this tropical island is detached from the U.S. mainland, many people are confused about the documents needed to travel to Hawaii. U.S. citizens, though, need the same documents that they use to travel to any of the other 49 states. On the other hand, international travelers to Hawaii need specific travel documents to visit the island just as they would if they were visiting other states of the union.

U.S. citizens do not need passports to travel to Hawaii because it is one of the 50 states of the union. They need to present their travel ticket and government-issued photo identification, such as a driver's license or birth certificate. However, people visiting from other countries should have valid passports from their country because entering Hawaii is akin to crossing the U.S. border.


Numerous countries need visas to travel to Hawaii, so international travelers of non-English-speaking countries need to visit the U.S. embassies of their countries to see if this travel document is applicable. However, citizens from Canada do not need to obtain a visa if they are visiting Hawaii for business or pleasure and staying for less than 90 days.

Visa Waiver Program (VWP)

People planning to visit Hawaii from Australia, New Zealand and many European countries can apply for visa waivers. Travelers need the waiver to travel to Hawaii; it will allow them to enter and stay for less than 90 days as long as they are travelling for business or pleasure, have proof of intent to leave, an arrival/departure certificate and no conditions that would prevent them from receiving visas.

Traveling Minors

Minors do not need specific documents to travel to Hawaii. For U.S. citizens, they can usually enter Hawaii under their parents' government-issued identification. For security purposes, though, parents may want to bring a copy of their children's birth certificates to get on airplanes or ships without difficulty. International travelers should obtain a passport for children traveling with them, birth certificates for their children or certified documents from parents proving that children have parental permission to travel with the adults.

Based in Tucson, Ariz., Cicely A. Richard has been writing since 1996. Her articles have been published in the “Arizona Daily Star” newspaper and “ForeWord Magazine.” Richard earned Bachelor of Arts degrees in English and journalism from Louisiana State University. .