Is Driving Barefoot Illegal in Hawaii?

Driving barefoot in Hawaii is completely legal, but if you’re involved in an accident barefoot, it could lead to a fine.
Written by Andrea Barrett
Reviewed by Jessica Barrett
Updated on Jun 01, 2022
Currently, there are no laws stating it’s illegal to drive barefoot in
, but if you’re involved in an accident and police believe driving barefoot was a contributing factor, you could face some hefty charges.
There’s nothing quite like feeling the sand between your toes and the ocean breeze on your face as you’re cruising home from the beach in your top-down Jeep. In such a laidback state, plenty of Hawaiians choose to walk around town sans the shoes, what about while driving? 
People tend to point a finger at driving barefoot because of longstanding myths about it being illegal, but when you dig into the laws, there isn’t much upholding the belief. 
If you’re considering keeping your shoes at home and driving around Hawaii barefoot but aren't sure if you can get into trouble with the law, this is for you!
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Is it illegal to drive barefoot in Hawaii?

There’s a big thumbs up coming your way if you want to drive without shoes in Hawaii—it’s completely legal! In fact, going barefoot in many parts of Hawaii is actually encouraged as part of the Aloha spirit.
Contrary to what most people believe, driving barefoot is legal in all states and Washington D.C. The idea that driving barefoot is illegal has been a myth for quite some time. 
Back in the 1990s, a man named ​​Jason Heimbaugh asked each of the 50 states’ DMVs if driving barefoot was legal. Although responses took quite some time, the answer was yes across the board. To date, there are no laws stating you can’t drive barefoot. 
However, many states do consider driving barefoot unsafe and advise against it—including Hawaii. This is because you could put yourself at risk of liability. If you’re involved in an accident while driving barefoot and the police think driving without shoes was a factor involved in the crash, you could be charged with
reckless driving
What’s more, although there are no state laws banning barefoot driving, it may be prohibited by local regulations. 

Is it safe to drive barefoot?

Although driving barefoot in Hawaii isn’t illegal, just because it’s legal doesn’t make it a good idea—it’s generally not recommended
However, there are two sides to the equation. Some people believe that driving without shoes can impair your ability to control your vehicle, while others argue that you have improved tactile feel without shoes and you can drive more carefully. But this depends on the type of shoes you’re wearing. 
Flip flops, high heels, wedges, open-toed sandals, or shoes with long laces all have the risk of getting caught up in the pedals. If you’re driving with these, it could be more dangerous than driving barefoot. 
Here are a few points to consider about driving barefoot:
  • You’re at an increased risk of having your foot slip off the pedals, especially if they’re wet 
  • Braking force may be reduced
  • You could be cited with additional charges if you get into an accident barefoot
  • You open yourself up to a higher risk of foot injury without proper footwear 
As a general rule, close-toed flat shoes are the most ideal for driving because they allow for optimal control and grip behind the wheel. 
Key Takeaway Driving barefoot isn’t illegal in Hawaii, and it may be safer than wearing open-toed shoes or flip-flops. However, always choose close-toed flat shoes with good traction whenever possible. 

How to save money on car insurance in Hawaii

While it may not be a crime to drive barefoot in Hawaii, you don’t want to be paying criminally high rates for your car insurance. Car insurance super app
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