The best airlines for flights to Hawaii depends on where you are traveling from. The two primary choices for cheap flights to Hawaii from west coast cities are Hawaiian Airlines and Alaska Airlines. Both are highly regarded carriers that have a wide range of offerings. Their prices on competitive routes are usually but not always similar. There are other choices as well, now including Virgin America, which is owned by Alaska Airlines, and flies to Maui and Oahu from the Bay Area and Los Angeles.
Best Airlines for Flights to Hawaii
Hawaiian Airlines flies to Honolulu, Hawaii (Big Island), Kauai, and Maui from Las Vegas, Los Angeles, New York, Oakland, Phoenix, Portland, Sacramento, San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose and Seattle. They also offer inter-island service between all islands, including Lanai and Molokai.
Hawaiian flies wide-body A330 as well as soon to be retired B767 aircraft to Hawaii. They are the only US airline to offer free meals in coach. The company is ranked highly among US competitors and is the champion of on-time awards. First-class now offers lie-flat seating available for purchase, upgrade or by bidding. Inter-island service uses B717 aircraft.
Alaska Airlines flies to Honolulu, Hawaii (Big Island), Kauai, and Maui directly from Anchorage, Bellingham, Oakland, Portland, Sacramento, San Diego, San Jose, and Seattle. They also offer connecting flights to Hawaii from across the US.
Alaska flies B737 aircraft to Hawaii. The company is regularly ranked among the best US airlines and also has a reputation of on-time service awards.
Virgin America now flies from San Francisco to Honolulu and Maui. Those flights began in late fall 2015. Their entry has spurred repeated Hawaii vacation deals in those markets. They also began flying from Los Angeles to Honolulu and Maui in spring 2016. Virgin America offers connecting flights to Hawaii from other US cities. The company was acquired by Alaska Airlines in 2016 which will take some time to complete. They will remain a separate brand through at least 2017 if not longer.
Virgin flies A320 aircraft to Hawaii. The company is consistently among the best rated US airlines.
Allegiant Air flies to Honolulu from Las Vegas. Their base ticket cost is frequently the lowest. However, issues include a la carte pricing that features fees for carry-on luggage and even water on board, seats that do not recline, poor customer service and flight reliability and aircraft maintenance issues of a very concerning nature.
Allegiant flies B757 aircraft to Hawaii.
American Airlines, Delta Airlines and United Airlines all have a range of flights to and from Hawaii from most areas of the U.S. There can be and often is discounting on these companies as well, especially from cities other than on the west coast. Their deals from the west coast are not as frequent as the airlines above which specialize in Hawaii.
Note: Photo above is of Southwest Airlines plane. Southwest flights to Hawaii are expected to begin in the not too distant future.