Hawaii can sometimes feel like a different country altogether than the continental USA. This can be a great advantage — until it becomes a significant liability.

One example of this is during divorce. Travel back and forth between the islands is expensive enough. If one spouse decides to leave during or after the breakup, airfare costs are bound to pile up.

Before divorce

Ending a marriage can take a long time, and is it natural for participants to want — or need — to travel during that period. If this is a possibility, addressing it proactively could prevent some conflict later on.

As explained in Hawaii legal code, the court has jurisdiction to divide property equitably with concern to basically any factor relevant to the case. One of those factors could be the extent to which one spouse diminished shared resources, and for what purpose. Therefore, written agreements about travel expenses could prevent argument on this point.

After divorce

Child visitation is often one of the major expenses for divorced couples with mixed Hawaii residency. Airfare can be expensive, especially the double-ticket trips for young children who need custodian parents. There is also the cost of custodian lodging to consider, if applicable.

Even once kids are old enough to fly alone, airlines typically require chaperone services. For example, Hawaiian Airlines’ unaccompanied minor fees are $35 per intrastate leg and $100 one-way to or from the continental USA. Only non-stop flights to the continent qualify, and the service is mandatory.

Obviously, there is more than just money to think about when organizing family travel after divorce. Reaching an agreement that shares the responsibility of planning — in addition to the financial responsibility, that is — is usually the best way to avoid future conflicts.