Hawaii with its beautiful islands is a dream destination for people from all over the world. From any continent, you can catch flights to this tropical paradise and spend the holiday of a lifetime. Whether you want to experience Oahu, Maui, Big Island, Kauai or Molokai, you have a variety of flight routes to choose from. Depending on your point of departure, there are several tips that will make your flight to Hawaii easier. Preferably you can fly non-stop to the island of your choice when arriving to Hawaii — or you can use Honolulu International Airport as a hub and spend an extra four hours traveling by taking inter-island connecting flights to your final holiday destination.
Many travelers from the US mainland go to Hawaii for short trips, and many do so for longer trips. There are many airlines flying to Honolulu, Maui, Kona and Hilo. If you travel from California, your average flight time is six hours for the 2,500-mile journey. The great majority of flights both from the US mainland and from international destinations land at Honolulu International Airport on Oahu.
The shortest flights from California are from San Francisco International Airport (SFO) and Oakland International Airport (OAK) — from there you will reach Honolulu in five hours and forty minutes. There are many different airlines that head for Hawaii. Alaska Airlines flies from Seattle to Kona, the Big Island, Lihue, Kauai, Kahului, Maui and Honolulu. There are also connections from Anchorage to Oahu and Los Angeles to Honolulu.
Other airlines that fly to the Hawaiian Islands are Delta Airlines, Hawaiian Airlines, United Airlines, American Airlines, and most recently, Southwest Airlines.
When travelling from New Zealand to Hawaii, there are many options for non-stop flights. You can fly with Air New Zealand or Hawaiian Airlines from Auckland to Honolulu. The flight takes eight-and-a-half hours. From Australia you have direct flights from Sydney and Brisbane that last about ten hours — and these each are operated by Virgin Australia, Qantas, Hawaiian Airlines or Air New Zealand.
The average flight time from Brazil to Hawaii is 14 hours and 33 minutes, with a distance of 7,422 miles. Flights take off at São Paulo–Guarulhos International Airport and land at either Honolulu International Airport or Kona International Airport. Available airlines are Qantas and Air Canada.
Many European countries such as France and England offer flights to Hawaii. From Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport to Honolulu, which is the fastest route, your flight will take on average 21 hours and 43 minutes. Another option is flying from Paris to Kahului, which is the slightly cheaper option. Possible airlines for this include United Airlines and Air Canada, as well as Hawaiian Airlines and many more.
From London Heathrow there are no direct flights to Hawaii. Instead, you will first fly into Seattle, Los Angeles or Dallas with American Airlines or Alaska Airlines, or into Vancouver with Air Canada. Other available airlines are Hawaiian Airlines, American Airlines, Delta, United and Southwest.
You can fly non-stop from Canada using Air Canada. Other routes are from Toronto or Vancouver to Honolulu, Maui or Kona. Further airlines include WestJet and United Airlines. You can either fly from Calgary or from Edmonton and the flight duration is around 10 hours.
Often, travelers in Hawaii want to experience more than the island they are staying on. Here, the wide range of inter-island flights is a great option. You can choose from four companies that offer those flights: Hawaiian Airlines, Mokulele Airlines, Southwest Airlines and Makani Kai Air.
The best coverage is provided by Hawaiian Airlines with flights between Kauai, Oahu, Maui and Big Island. Hawaiian Airlines offers individual travel plans that enable you to buy inter-island flights at cheaper rates — however, they are non-transferable.
Mokulele Airlines offers you the lowest airfares with more than 120 flights per day. You will be able to get direct flights from Kona to Oahu, Maui and Molokai. Southwest Airlines is another low-fare company with routes starting from the Big Island, going from Hilo and Kona to Honolulu, and from Kona to Kahului.
The local operator Makani Kai Air uses small airplanes between Oahu, Kauai, Maui, Molokai, and the Big Island.
In winter, airline fares are more expensive by 200 dollars on average, as a premium per ticket applies. So, if you want to save that money, travelling in April, May, September and October is recommended as these are the cheapest months.
Another great tip is to make sure to book your flights in advance, as this can possible save you up to 60% per ticket. At the latest, you should book your ticket 21 days before starting your journey. Another way of saving money is being flexible about the time of day you are flying. Pre-dawn flights or red-eye flights are generally less costly.
Also make sure to avoid the weekends — because due to high demand the prices are significantly higher. Another great idea is to use flight search engines to find the best deals. Further, prices vary depending on which airport you depart from — thus you can search for those with lower prices. For the US this means that West Coast starting points are cheaper than East Coast starting points.
As a general rule, avoid Friday evenings and Monday mornings as these are always the busiest times and thus the most costly. For domestic flights from the US mainland, Tuesday and Wednesday tend to be the cheapest.
In general, to save money on airfare, be sure to avoid peak seasons and holiday seasons. The major holidays are Christmas and Thanksgiving. At these times, prices are considerably higher. When wanting to save money, being as flexible as possible is always helpful. You can use flight search engines to get great deals as long as you are not bound to fixed dates.
Never buy tickets more than four months in advance as airlines will reduce the prices after that point. This does not apply for holiday seasons.
The long flights to Hawaii may be a challenge, so with a few practical tips you can make time go by faster. One great proven tip is to set your watch to the time at your destination as soon as you board the plane. This will help minimize any jet lag that might occur.
Bring antibacterial wipes to reduce the risk of catching any type of illness before your holiday has even started. Also, bring earplugs and a sleeping mask for a comfortable and relaxing flight.
If you travel with children, taking entertainment in the form of books, movies and toys with you is an absolute must.
Make sure that you don’t dehydrate. Bring your own water so that you always have plenty of fluids at hand. Bring a small carry-on bag or a backpack that holds all your absolute necessities and any items that make the flight more comfortable, such as lip balm, chewing gum, a small cushion, painkillers for possible headaches and any other item that you might need.
Once you have landed at any of the seven airports on the five islands, your Hawaiian adventure can begin. You can pick up your rental car at any of these seven airports: Honolulu International (HNL), Kahului (OGG), Kapalua (JHM), Lihue (LIH), Kona (KOA), Hilo (ITO) and Molokai (MKK). The best option is picking up your rental car right at the airport and having a relaxed start to your holiday without needing a taxi or relying on public transportation. At the end of your holiday, dropping off your car at the airport also saves time. Having your own car for the duration of your stay will give you the freedom to explore the island at your own pace and plan road trips and tours exactly as you want them to be.
The US Visa Waiver Program (VWP) enables citizens from 38 countries to stay in Hawaii for up to 90 days without a visa. These countries include all EU states and other states such as Chile, Australia and New Zealand. You do, however, need a new e-passport that is machine-readable.
You have to register online at least 72 hours before the departure of your flight, using the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA).
Canadian citizens can stay in the US for up to 182 days without registering via ESTA.
If you are from Brazil you need a B-2 tourist visa.
The beaches on Hawaii’s Big Island are very different from all the other islands’ beaches as Big Island is by far the youngest of the Hawaiian Islands. Big Island has some of the world’s only green sand beaches — as well as black sand beaches and white sand beaches and some very new beaches formed from lava rocks.
Depending on whether you want to spend your holiday on just one island or visiting different islands, choose the modes of transportation that best suit your needs. The flights from island to island are very short — however, sometimes you might need a connecting flight through Honolulu International Airport in Oahu.
Planning your trip to Hawaii is an exciting matter — as Hawaii is the ultimate dream destination for many travelers. The different Hawaiian Islands offer something for everybody — from beautiful beaches to breathtaking volcanic landscapes to rainforests, gardens and hills, they are always worth a visit.