How to get a Hawai’i State Identification (ID) Card

If you move to Hawai’i, it is wise to get a Hawai’i State ID or driver’s license.  Various businesses, including restaurants and hotels, offer special kama’aina (local resident) rates.  To get the kama’aina rate you need proof of residence, such as an identification card.

If you are living in Hawai’i permanently it may make sense to get a Hawai’i driver’s license (You can find more information about getting a driver’s license in Honolulu on the Honolulu Government Website).  But if you recently moved here from another state and want to keep your out-of- state driver’s license, an alternative is to get a state ID.  It is legal to drive in Hawai’i with a valid out-of-state driver’s license, so you don’t need a HI driver’s license until your old license expires.

Hawaii State ID Card

Here are the steps to obtaining a Hawai’i State ID:

1) The prerequisite to getting a Hawai’i State ID card is being a resident of the state of Hawai’i, so the first step is to move to Hawaii!  You need proof of your permanent address in Hawaii, such as a lease of 6 months or longer.

2) Gather the required original documents.  (You may want to start this even before you move to Hawaii.)  There is a long list of required documents on the second page of the application form.  Make sure you have all the necessary documents before applying!  If you don’t have them all in your possession you might have to order them, which can take a while. The main documents include:

-Proof of Hawaii Address;
-Original Social Security Card;
-U.S. Birth Certificate, U.S. Passport, Certificate of Naturalization, or Green Card; and
-Marriage certificate, if you are married (I don’t know why this is required, but it is!).

3) Next, visit the State of Hawaii Attorney General’s website and apply online through the Express Website.  This is a real time saver!  You will still have to make an appointment to present your supporting documents and pick up your ID in person, but you will be able to get in the Express line and be helped much faster than if you applied in person.  You will need to pay an $18 fee by credit or debit card when applying online.  (The fee is $15 if submitting a paper application).

4) Show up for your appointment at least 15 minutes early with all of the required supporting documents.  The main office on the Island of Oahu is located at: Kekuanao’a Building, 465 S. King Street, Rm. 102, Honolulu, Hawaii 96813.  There are also offices located on the other islands. If you applied online, be sure to get in the Express line for online applicants.  It is much shorter than the main line!  When it is your turn you will present your appointment confirmation and supporting documents and have your photo taken.  Your ID card will be issued right there!

Once you have your Hawai’i state identification card, you can use it to get kama’aina discounts at restaurants, hotels, and tourist attractions.  The kama’aina annual pass to the Polynesian Cultural Center is an especially good deal!  We have also heard that hotels offer up to 50% off if you want to visit another island.

Please let us know if you found this information helpful.

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