to reply back to all of you. We had some bad karma hit us. The day after we got back, my hubby got layed off, along with most everyone else in his company (a true sign that we need to move to hawaii). Then I got laryngitis and I've been sick for the rest of the week. I swear I did not take a cursed tiki idol back with me like on the Brady Bunch!
To answer your questions:
We took the Star of Honolulu for the whale watching trip. You board at 9:45 am. it leaves the dock at 10:30 and gets back at 1 pm. they did a good job. DON'T BUY THE LUNCH or else you will spend time eating lunch and not watching whales.
indianagirl: There are a couple of other coupon books out there. They have these newspaper boxes all over downtown Waikiki and at the airport. They are filled with various coupon books, so don't fret if you frazzled at the airport and don't grab them.
As for transportation, we rented a car, so I don't know about the shuttle.
we didn't make a single reservation in advance and got to see everything that we wanted. I wouldn't book any of the tours for pearl harbor, hanamua bay, etc. unless you don't have a car. They charge for the tours and you really don't need them. Trust me. We hadn't ever been to Oahu before and got to everthing just fine. You can't get too lost on an island!
p.s. at a Duke's for breakfast. I think it was $11.00 for the all you can eat buffet and an omellete (sp?) station. Chow down and get your $ worth.
Also, there are quite a few places that serve a "plate lunch" which in hawaii means potato salad, rice and some sort of meat. didn't get to try it, but it looked good.
there seems to be quite a few subways and mcdonalds on oahu. not that you are flying that far to eat at subway, but a few light/cheap lunches might seem appealing after the hefty cost dinners in waikiki!