• Honolulu ranks as one of the top cities in the nation for high credit card debt, with an average of over $5,000 per resident. 
  • Residents of the Aloha capital can access Honolulu debt relief programs, including debt management plans, credit counseling, and debt settlement, to get help paying off large balances
  • TurboDebt enrolled an average of $29,261 from clients in Honolulu, providing needed debt relief through consultations and settlement plans. 

Why Is Debt Relief Important in Honolulu?

The capital of the Aloha State, Honolulu draws millions of visitors to its pristine waters and tropical beauty. But for those living on the island every day, making ends meet can be tough. While the U.S. struggles with unprecedented levels of consumer debt, Honolulu residents need options for debt relief services more than most of the other cities on the U.S. mainland.   

Rising food and housing costs in Honolulu outpace the national average, and even with an hourly wage higher than most of the U.S., it’s hard for many consumers to catch up. Rent is another issue, as Honolulu residents pay $5,000 more than the national average for housing. In fact, the island saw the consumer price index increase 4% in 2023, a much larger jump than the rest of the country. 

Credit cards are also another big source of financial hardship for islanders as inflation causes more consumers to charge everything from big purchases to essential items to defer costs. Honolulu residents carry some of the highest credit card debt in the country, ranking 14th out of the 100 largest U.S. cities, with an average debt of $5,523.

For Honolulu residents struggling with unsecured debts from credit cards, medical bills, and personal and student loans, a debt relief program can help alleviate the burden of financial stress. Keep reading to learn more about the best options for debt relief in Honolulu. Find out how you can start a plan to pay off outstanding balances and get back to living pure Aloha. 

TurboDebt Helps Honolulu Residents Get Out of Debt

TurboDebt has been a trusted provider of debt relief services in Honolulu for years, offering the best in Hawaii debt relief through our customized repayment plans. 

In 2023 alone, TurboDebt saved Honolulu residents an average of 50% on their total debt before fees, with an average enrollment of $29,261 per client. We enrolled over $4 million in unsecured debts in the same year, assisting hundreds of islanders with debt repayments and a fresh start financially. 

Signs You May Need Debt Relief

We know stress from debt can affect your financial and physical health. If you’re having trouble meeting your expenses, seeking help through a professional organization like TurboDebt may be the best solution to end your financial struggles. Many of our clients come to us with overwhelming credit card debt after getting stuck in a cycle of using their cards to pay monthly bills and other costs. 

If any of these options sound like you, consider enrolling your outstanding balances into a debt relief program that fits your situation.

Here are some clear signs it’s time to think about debt relief:

  • Carrying high balances on credit cards
  • Using payday loans to cover monthly expenses
  • Having a high debt-to-income (DTI) ratio
  • Maxing out credit cards for either essential or impulse purchases
  • Taking funds out of your retirement savings to pay bills
  • Getting frequent calls from debt collectors

Top Options for Debt Relief Programs in Honolulu

The following debt relief solutions can aid islanders in effectively paying off debt, often saving time and money in the process:

Credit Counseling

Seeking relief from a credit counseling agency offers a unique opportunity to learn financial strategies while getting advice from trained professionals. Certified credit counselors work with clients to discuss their financial situation and the best ways to get out of debt. They may start by reviewing your credit report and your debt-to-income ratio to determine how you can pay off outstanding balances using your current income. 

Enrolling in a credit counseling program won’t actually pay off your debt, but it can give you the necessary tools to make smart financial choices and a plan to repay debts. We believe this option works best for Honolulu consumers who aren’t sure how to handle mounting debt. It can also be a starting place for low or no-cost services for low-income consumers. 

Debt Management Programs

Many credit counseling services and private or nonprofit organizations offer debt management programs (DMPs) to help consumers pay off outstanding balances. First, you and your creditors agree to a debt management plan that determines how much you’ll pay toward your debts each month. Once you set up a plan, you’ll start making monthly payments to the DMP, which then disburses the funds to each creditor on your behalf, in the right amount(s), before each due date. This way, you don’t have to worry about missing a payment. 

We find this is an efficient option for consumers juggling multiple debts who are also struggling to keep up with payments. However, be prepared to make some lifestyle changes if you opt for this method of debt relief in Honolulu. A DMP usually requires you to stop using all credit cards to slim down your expenses to ensure you have enough to make a lump-sum payment toward your debts each month. 

Debt Settlement 

Debt settlement is often an effective way to reduce the total amount you owe and pay off your accounts faster. At TurboDebt, we see clients struggling with high amounts of credit card debt pay back outstanding balances in as little as 48 months when they stick to a monthly payment plan. Settling with creditors can take thousands off your total debt, sometimes as much as 50% of your current balance. 

Working with a debt settlement company, you’ll make a customized plan to pay a certain amount into a savings account each month. The organization then negotiates with your creditors to reduce your debt balance. Once you’ve collected enough to cover your predetermined settlement, the organization pays off your creditors with the amount you’ve saved, and you get a financial reset.  

Debt Consolidation

Consolidating what you owe is like taking a DIY approach to debt relief. You can opt for a debt consolidation loan or a balance transfer credit card to consolidate your debt. We find that a zero-interest balance transfer credit card works well for Honolulu consumers who can quickly pay off smaller debts before the initial interest-free period ends (typically, 12-18 months after the account is opened). 

For consumers who want to reduce their interest on multiple large balances, a debt consolidation loan from lenders at a bank or credit union may be the right answer. It’s important to carefully check the terms for either consolidation method, as you may end up paying more in interest over the course of the loan if you can’t pay off the balance fast enough. 

Many consumers we talk to are initially interested in taking out a loan, only to find it’s not the best fit to actually pay down debt effectively. Take advantage of TurboDebt’s free consultation to get some insight into this type of debt relief and determine if it’s right for your financial situation. 

Debt Forgiveness

This solution is rare but effective for Honolulu residents who qualify for a debt forgiveness program. Offered mostly through the federal or state government, debt forgiveness can eliminate all or at least a large portion of your debt. 

Because many residents living in the capital work for the state, we find this solution more relevant for citizens of Honolulu than other Oahu locations. Islanders who’ve worked in public service or government positions can pursue the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program to relieve debt. 

“Residents of Honolulu can also take advantage of the many public assistance plans that are available from Hawaii’s Department of Human Services,” explains Brad Reichert, founder and managing director of Reichert Asset Management, LLC. “They offer TANF and TAONF programs that provide cash assistance for low-income families who are residents of the Aloha state,” he adds.

Hawaii Child Care Nutrition Program provides nutritional health guidelines to licensed child care facilities, ensuring child nutrition and striving to prevent and manage chronic illnesses. The SNAP-Ed Program is a funded program offering healthy nutrition and improving the lifestyles of eligible low-income families,” Reichert explains.


After exhausting other avenues of debt relief, bankruptcy gives consumers a way out of overwhelming debt. Using bankruptcy as a debt relief option in Honolulu has a lasting negative impact on your credit score, but it may be an optimal way to pay off debts. 

Individuals typically file either Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 bankruptcy, using the courts to determine how much they can repay. Chapter 7 involves selling most or all of your non-exempted assets to repay creditors, with courts often waiving additional unsecured debt responsibilities based on your income. 

Conversely, Chapter 13 bankruptcy allows you to skip selling assets in favor of a court-approved repayment plan that can take anywhere from 3-5 years. 

Before choosing this option, it’s a good idea to seek legal advice from an experienced bankruptcy attorney. To find a reputable legal professional, consider checking with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) for law firm recommendations in your area. 

Why Choose TurboDebt’s Debt Relief Program?

Our team strives to connect clients with the best debt relief plans that match their unique financial situations. TurboDebt offers free consultations to start the conversation and learn more about your struggle with debt. Once we understand your financial needs, we’ll create a plan that helps you pay off high balances each month so you can get back to living debt-free.

TurboDebt enrolled over $15 million in debt from Hawaii residents in 2023, including those living in the capital city, and we’re ready to help you, too. Here’s why we think you’d benefit from working with our team of experts:

  • Save up to 50% of your total debt balance
  • Pay off debt faster (often in 24-48 months through our program)
  • Receive highly-rated service (check out thousands of 5-star TurboDebt reviews)
  • Get expert help settling unsecured debt balances of $10,000 and over

Contact us today to get started with your free consultation!