East Coast Trip Advice

HBA’s East Coast trip was a great experience for me.

For those of you going on the trip for the first time this spring break. Here’s some advice to help you make the most out of it.

Because Hawaii is a rock in the middle of the Pacific, I believe that it is essential for everyone to visit the East Coast at least once in their lifetime. It has a completely different vibe from the rest of the mainland and especially Hawaii; it is brusque, fast-paced, and alluring at the same time.

Staying Warm in Spring Weather

Obviously, the climate differs greatly from Hawaii’s. It’s difficult to predict how cold it will be, but it’s a safe bet that you will encounter weather that ranges from 20-30 degrees fahrenheit if your trip is during spring break. I think the warmest weather I encountered was 40 degrees while the coldest was a nippy 12 degrees. Always check the weather forecast, whether on your phone or on the TV news channel in your hotel. The most important tip to remember for keeping warm is to dress in layers. I recommend buying thermals and tights to wear beneath your clothes. I, along with several friends, attempted to brave the cold in jeans. Solely jeans. It didn’t work out well. On a few occasions, I actually wore two layers underneath my jeans.

As for your upper body, I suggest that you bring a good number of long sleeve tops. Make sure that you can layer your tops; oftentimes, I wore three layers of them. If you don’t want to deal with many layers, wear a long sleeve shirt paired with a thick hoodie. On windy days, you might need an extra layer of warmth. I brought along a thick coat with wind-breaking qualities, and it definitely saved me from the biting cold.

Fending Off the Dry Climate

A coat, a long sleeve top, and jeans kept me alive, but I greatly benefitted from several other items. My hands got really dried out because of the cold and dry air. I brought along gloves that kept my hands very warm. They were made from lambskin on the outside and were lined with cotton on the inside, and had a similar function to my coat. To fight off dry skin, I used a lot of lotion, and I suggest bringing travel-sized tubes with you so you can carry them wherever you go. You will need to reapply several times throughout the day to keep your hand moisturized. Do not minimize the severity of dry skin; when your skin starts cracking, it is very painful. I also had lip balm with me at all times, which really came in handy. I highly recommend applying moisturizer especially to all exposed skin, but covered areas like your legs and arms should be cared for with moisturizer every night after showering.

Taking Care of Your Feet

Footwear is the final step in completing your get-up. Do not make the mistake of sacrificing fashion for comfort. I recommend a good pair of walking shoes and a few sets of thick socks. I almost always wore two pairs of socks: one low cut pair, and ankle high socks over those. Some of my friends brought Ugg boots, but some of them said they were uncomfortable to walk far distances in. If you do wear boots or Uggs, you might want to consider putting in some sort of sole insert that will take pressure off your feet. You will constantly be walking, so make sure you’re as comfortable as possible.

Tips from Last Year’s Travelers

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“Definitely bring a camera or a portable charger for your phone because there were so many interesting things to capture. However, don’t get so caught up in taking pictures that you forget to actually enjoy the moments. Memories are more valuable than pictures in many ways.”

Jantzen Nakai (’16)

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“Use deodorant because you don’t get the chance to wash clothes, so you will have to reuse them.”

Chambre Mangiarelli (’16)

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“Don’t spend a lot of money on food; spend on what you’re interested in, but be open to new things.”

Marissa Kwon (’16)

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“Don’t flaunt your money when you go to places and be aware of suspicious people.”

Jantzen Nakai (’16)

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“Try to drink a bottle of water each time you’re on the bus, and bring a bottle along whenever you leave to walk around. It helps you to stay healthy.”

Chester Hui (’16)

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“I’d suggest spending most of your money in Amish town and little Italy and Chinatown because you can get unique things at those places. If you see something that you really like in another place then I would suggest getting it. Just make sure that it’s something that you wouldn’t be able to find in Hawaii.”

Chambre Mangiarelli (’16)

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“Bring your wallet everywhere you go, because you don’t want to regret not buying something.”

Shelbi Nakano (’16)

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“My mom got me vitamin C tablets, and I took those everyday so I wouldn’t get sick.”

Kylie Yamauchi (’16)

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“Buy the food that is special to the city, not food that you can find in Hawaii. For example: at Philadelphia I would definitely buy a Philly cheese steak, and I would definitely recommend buying pretzels and jam from Amish town. Be mindful that you buy only what fits in your suitcase; you don’t want your suitcase to exceed the weight limit or you might have to leave items back.”

Chester Hui (’16)

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“Handwarmers come in really handy on cold days. My friend brought disposable ones that lasted for several hours and they worked really well.”

Kayla Takemoto (’16)

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“Use Eos to keep your lips luscious.”

Blaise Takushi (’16)

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“Don’t spend a lot of money on food. Spend on what you’re interested in but be open to new things.”

Marissa Kwon (’16)

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A Few More Words of Advice

  1. Don’t bother shaving your legs girls; you wear jeans the whole time anyway.
  2. Learn to shower quickly, otherwise the last person to shower won’t be in bed till after midnight.
  3. Make sure you can share a bathroom with others. On a few occasions, there were four of us girls in the bathroom at the same time.
  4. Don’t jump at the chance to by the first I <3 NY trinket you see. After a few hours in New York, you realize that the same souvenirs are available in numerous places.
  5. If you see a unique shirt or item you should buy it…for the right price. Haggling is very much appropriate in New York, and if you don’t like the price that’s offered, try to get it down. If the final offer still isn’t what you are willing to pay, walk out and go across the street; you will most likely find the exact same thing you were looking at and you can possibly get a better price for the item.
  6. Use the bathroom whenever you get the chance because if you’re drinking as much water as you should be, you’ll have to go often.
  7. Consider taking a laxative; most of us were constipated for days.

Some Favorite Memories

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“My favorite memory was trying to find the shackles in Williamsburg. We thought we found the shackles, but it turned out to be a horse hitching post. How embarrassing!”

Chambre Mangiarelli (’16)

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“I remember that one morning, Kylie and I were waiting for everyone else to come out of their hotel rooms. We saw Chester walking down some stairs and he said, “Hey guys, let’s go adventuring!” Right after he tripped and face planted down the stairs, and we couldn’t stop laughing.”

Keisha Ching (’16)

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“Seeing snow on the Empire State Building was pretty amazing.”

Marissa Kwon (’16)

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“My friends and I got lost in Chinatown. It was kind of scary but really fun too. The only thing we were looking for was a souvenir shop, but Jantzen kept leading us into weird stores and he even suggested going into the fish market. I don’t recommend that you go into any fish market. Eventually we found a shop and got to buy some cool things.”

Kayla Takemoto (’16)

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“A few of my friends and I got to be on a Jumbotron in the Times Square.”

Chester Hui (’16)

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“One of my favorite places was the Holocaust Museum. Definitely take your time in there because you want to immerse yourself in history. It was pretty graphic and saddening, but also very poignant and eye-opening. They also had some cool things in the gift shop.”

Shelbi Nakano (’16)

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“I really enjoyed going to the senate building and going on the underground transportation. And the view from the Speaker of the House’s balcony—that was prime. Also, the bus rides were so much fun. It was just really enjoyable to be able to have a camaraderie with everyone on the bus, have late night talks, and play games.”

Jantzen Nakai (’16)

 

 

My Favorite Memories

I went subway surfing with a few of my friends. We would all try to stand without having to hold the poles in the subway cars. Whoever could stay standing in the same position the longest won. I also remember that in NYC there were lots of people wearing mascot-like costumes. I saw several Elmos, Spidermen, Buzz Lightyears, and many others. I walked past this one guy dressed as the Statue of Liberty, and when he asked if I wanted a picture I got excited. He wrapped an American flag around me and placed Lady Liberty’s crown on my head and her torch in my hand. After I took the picture, he demanded $5 for the picture. I didn’t know that I had to pay, so I stood there trying to find my way out of the situation. I ended up asking if he could accept a debit card because I didn’t have any cash on me—it was not the complete truth—and he eventually gave up and let me pay him with a high five.

I hope that you all enjoy the trip as much as I did!

 

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