MVCB Celebrates Success of the Surfrider Foundationʻs "Rise Above Plastics on Vacation" Program and Aims to Boost Participation

Aug 30, 2022

The Maui Visitors and Convention Bureau (MVCB) is celebrating the success of Surfrider Foundation Maui Chapterʻs “Rise Above Plastics on Vacation” program, a campaign to “provide alternatives to single-use plastic water bottles as a filtered form of water for those vacationing on Maui.”

MVCB is a partner in the "Rise Above Plastics on Vacation" effort and is supporting by providing co-branded reusable water bottles. MVCB is also recognizing existing partners and is inviting vacation rental units and condominium complexes to join in on the program.

"Regenerative tourism is at the heart of the Maui Nui Destination Management Action Plan (DMAP), which we’re thankful is able to support and advocate the Rise Above Plastics on Vacation Program through Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority funding,” said Meagan DeGaia, destination manager, Maui Visitors and Convention Bureau. “The Maui Visitors and Convention Bureau is proud to partner with Surfrider Foundation Maui Chapter and industry partners because the ‘Rise Above Plastics on Vacation’ program is simple yet impactful, where our land and people all benefit.”

“Many vacation rentals are taking the initiative to discourage single-use plastics through business operations,” said Marina Scott, Vice Chair, Rise Above Plastics Coordinator, Surfrider Foundation Maui Chapter. “Our hope is that this becomes the standard for the industry, and we can drastically reduce unnecessary plastics from entering our fragile environment.”

Visitors need to know before arriving on Maui that our water is safe to drink, and reusable beverage containers are a simple way to protect this beautiful environment they came to enjoy.

“Choosing reusable containers over single-use plastics is an easy way that we can work together to drastically reduce plastic waste. Only about 9 percent of the world's plastics are recycled, and every single piece of plastic ever created still exists in some form today,” said Scott. “This program provides a simple solution to support sustainable tourism on Maui.”

Current “Rise Above Plastics” partners on Maui include:
● 22 Koki Place
● Maui Eldorado D202
● Kula Jewel
● Sensational Maui LLC
● Hale Mauka Makai
● Kihei Garden Oasis and Kihei Garden Cottage
● Hale Ono Loa 206
● Papakea G107
● Ocean Bliss Maui

The “Rise Above Plastics” program has been met with favorable reviews from existing partners. Claudia Ledesma is the owner of the Hale Mauka Makai vacation rental and says “Taking care of our Mother Earth is more important than ever. One way to do so is by encouraging our island visitors to not buy single-use plastics. We are very happy to participate in this new program and receive reusable water bottles to offer to our guests. We also personally encourage our visitors to be environmentally responsible, as well as to be respectful to the people, ‘āina (land) and kai (sea) by sharing the links to the Mālama Hawai‘i and Kūleana Travel Tips videos.”

To view the Mālama Hawai‘i and Kūleana Travel Tips videos, visit

MCVB’s participation in the “Rise Above Plastics on Vacation” program meets key Maui DMAP goals including:
● Action B: Initiate, fund and continue programs to protect the health of ocean, fresh water, land-based ecosystems, and biosecurity.
● Action B.4: Encourage and if needed provide incentives to visitor industry partners [to reduce ecological footprint.] Recognize those partners who have exceeded expectations.

The Maui Nui DMAP is a community-based initiative of HTA, in partnership with the County of Maui and MVCB, aiming to rebuild, redefine and reset the direction of tourism as determined by the residents of Maui, Moloka‘i and Lāna‘i over the next three years. The focus is on stabilizing, recovering, and rebuilding the desired visitor industry on each island by addressing key issues surrounding tourism and mitigating visitor impacts in collaboration with lawmakers, the counties, and state and federal agencies.

To support this program as a visitor or register your vacation rental' please visit or email [email protected]