Renting the Jeep Wrangler on Kauai

Kauai Jeep


  • Strikes impressive pose against red-clay graveyard backdrops.
  • Complete inability to effectively lock vehicle (you can’t lock the zippers and velcro that keep the top on) enforces devil-may-care attitude regarding stuff.
  • Has an AUX jack for your iPod.
  • “When you’re driving behind a Kia and the Kia makes it through the flooded road all right, then you’re probably okay with the Jeep.”
  • Constant wind in your face keeps reminding you you’re alive.
  • Getting into the back seat is best performed Dukes of Hazzard-style.
  • Going off-road seems like a good idea, no matter the circumstances.
  • Short wheel base means you can fit just about anywhere.


  • The line between “efficiently simple” and “outright cheap” gets a little blurry around this vehicle.
  • It’s kind of weird that you can never really lock the car.
  • It’s not that easy to put the top back up. And when you get stuck in a sudden downpour while heading up a slick 4×4 trail along a ridge in Waimea Canyon, it becomes less easy.
  • You’re not the only one who thought it’d be fun to rent a Jeep while on Kauai.

Bottom line, though, is that I kind of want to get me one of these for home. I live in one of, like, three geographies in the US where it makes sense to own one — aren’t I kind of screwing up by not having one??



  • Game Dame

    Just so you know… my sister owned one of these while she lived in Southern California. Over the course of two years it was broken into at least once a month. People even broke in to take the standard-equipment radio. All Wrangler parts are interchangeable with other Wranglers so if someone needs something you have on your car (whether you realize it’s valuable or not), they will take it. It had zero resale value at the end of that time. Also, from my point of view, the thing was horribly uncomfortable to travel in for more than say 60 minutes. (And I rode with her from Denver to Las Vegas in that thing. Ugh.) Just so you know, is all.

  • bkdunn

    LOL. Thx for the warning. I can see it not being a lot of fun for the 60+ minutes — that ride up to Princeville and back got pretty annoying. I wouldn’t ever get one of these as my primary transport. And I don’t know if I can really justify having two cars just for myself. Talk about conspicuous consumption…

  • Cameron

    I was wanting to rent a jeep in Kauai and take it off roading as well. Where did you rent from? I’ve heard some companies have tracking devices in their vehicles to prevent anyone from venturing off road.

    • bkdunn

      Rented from Thrifty once and I think Alamo the other time. I’m guessing the “tracking device” concern is unfounded.

  • chris

    just like everything else in the world, a jeep wrangler isn’t for everyone. i used to drive mine on long (+10 hour) trips and didn’t mind it one bit. i’ve had my jeep broken into but i’ve never had anything in there of any value for someone to steal.