Auto Insurance in Hawaii (HI)

If You Are Paying More Than $912.23 on Auto Insurance in Hawaii, You Are Paying Too Much.

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Auto Insurance Industry in Hawaii

  • An average consumer pays $1,102.00 on auto insurance
  • 374 of every 100,000 vehicles are reported stolen every year
  • Accident fatality rate of 1.09%
  • Of all accidents: 62% are road-way accidents, 19% are intersection accidents, and 3% of all accidents involve at least 1 truck.

Growth and expansion have made inroads - literally and figuratively - to life for residents on Hawaii’s majestic islands. Hawaii is one of a few no-fault states where residents must carry adequate insurance on the vehicles they drive on roads and highways.

Hawaii’s Minimum Requirements on Auto Insurance

Carrying auto liability insurance is the only way drivers in Hawaii can establish financial responsibility. Unlike other states, Hawaii does not provide the options of self-insurance or purchasing a bond certificate. The required minimum liability insurance coverage amounts apply:

  • Bodily injury: $20,000/$40,000
  • Personal injury protection (PIP): $10,000
  • Property damage: $10,000

Additionally, drivers have the option to purchase underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage. Underinsured/uninsured motorist liability coverage protects you if you are involved in an accident with another driver who either has little or no insurance. The minimum available amounts for each are $20,000/$40,000 coverage protection.

Proving that you have a valid auto liability insurance policy requires keeping an insurance card in your vehicle. Typically, the insurance company will issue the card after you purchase the policy. The information on the insurance card is used as proof if you are involved in an accident or pulled over by a law enforcement officer.

If you are in an accident or pulled over for a traffic violation and cannot produce the card, the officer will issue a citation. You may also be required to pay a fine for not having proof. Not having physical proof in your car is one thing; driving without insurance is another. 

If you are caught driving without insurance, Hawaiian law requires that you surrender your vehicle plates and registration. Until fines are paid and you obtain auto liability insurance, you will not be able to drive the car.

Consumer Car Licensing Information in Hawaii

Most drivers receive the Class 3 driver’s license in Hawaii, which grants the privilege of driving passenger-style vehicles. Generally, these vehicles weigh 15,000 lbs or less and can transport fewer than 15 passengers.

Hawaii residents under 18 years of age must complete a driver’s education course and driver’s training class. The state will issue a permit before drivers in this age group can apply for a Class 3 license. 

The absence of a statewide Department of Motor Vehicles is another way that Hawaii differs from other states. As an alternative, a system of registration offices exists within each county. Hawaii residents applying for a first-time driver’s license must pass a written test and road test. 

The availability and method for scheduling appointments for road tests depends on where you live. For example, you can schedule an appointment for the road test online if you live in Honolulu.

Be prepared for the following on the day you take the written examination:

  • Provide proof that you are a legal resident of Hawaii
  • Provide proof of your legal name, date of birth and social security number
  • Complete the application for a permit
  • Pass road sign and vision exams

If you are under 18, your parent or legal guardian must be present when you take the test. Only residents with an out-of-state driver’s license are not required to take the driving test. 

Fees for the road test, written examination and instruction permit varies among counties.

Motorcycle Licensing Information in Hawaii

Hawaii residents may apply for a Class 2 motorcycle license by following a process similar to receiving a Class 2 driver’s license. Each applicant must pass four separate tests: vision, sign and road identification, motorcycle-specific written exam and on-road skills test.

A passing score for the vision test is 70, which means you have a minimum 20/40 eyesight. It is essential to pass the vision test before you can move to the next testing phase. If your score is lower, you will need to receive corrective lenses from an ophthalmologist before retaking the vision test.

The sign and road identification test measures your perception of the color used for road signs. In addition, the test demonstrates how well you can identify basic road signs.

You are required to take the written exam and a motorcycle-specific exam if you do not have a Class 3 license. If you have a Class 3 driver’s license, you might be exempt from taking the written exam. Typically, this decision is up to the examiner’s discretion. 

The on-road skills test assesses your ability to handle a motorcycle during basic maneuvers. The test is given on a closed course using simulated settings to evaluate your proficiency level.

Commercial Vehicle Licensing Information in Hawaii

Class 4 commercial driver’s licenses (CDLs) are issued to residents who will drive vehicles that weigh between 15,001 and 26,000 lbs. The minimum age to apply in Hawaii is 21 and no intrastate option exists for resident 18-21 years old. This also applies to new residents under age 21 who have an out-of-state CDL. You will have to wait until you turn 21 before legally driving a commercial vehicle in Hawaii.

To begin the process for obtaining a CDL in Hawaii, you will need to:

  • Complete a CDL application
  • Provide proof of your age, social security number and current driver’s license
  • Submit a DOT medical report
  • Pass an eye exam, knowledge test and written endorsement exams

You will receive a CDL instruction permit that is valid for six months. With a permit, you can practice before taking the actual road test. The road test is administered at select offices and requires an appointment.

The CDL is valid for six years for residents between 21 and 71; residents 72 or older must renew their CDL every two years with a stringent medical clearance process.

Fees for the CDL process include:

  • $15 knowledge test
  • $5 per endorsement
  • $30 instruction permit

Restriction codes may apply based on the type of CDL you need. This includes endorsements.

More Resources on Auto Insurance in Hawaii

Department of Insurance