Alaska Airlines Hawaii Routes

Alaska Airlines Hawaii Cuts: “Critical Travel” Only

Hawaii’s beloved 2nd bellwether carrier, Alaska Airlines, just announced they are in the process of removing 70% of all their flights for April and May. The company said, “We will keep cargo moving and fly those who need critical travel.” We have been anticipating this, given that tomorrow is the first day of Hawaii’s mandatory 14-day arrival quarantine mandate. Next we expect Alaska Airlines to remove virtually all flights to Hawaii, other than any they deem “critical.” We’ll be updating as soon as possible.

It is interesting to note that until this, only Hawaiian Airlines had taken the lead in cancelling Hawaii flights during the quarantine. Alaska is now up next with their announcement and subsequent schedule changes. We had heard rumors that airlines may not have wanted to announce cancellations prior to an industry bailout deal, as that process could indicate what amount of flying, if any, will be required at this time.

Alaska Airlines also suggested in a press release that it will adjust its schedule June and beyond based on demand. They said, “it is our expectation that reductions will be substantial for at least the next several months.”

You’ll recall that Hawaiian Airlines cancelled all but one daily flight from their US schedule through May 20

Alaska Airlines Hawaii schedule cuts next.

We hope to have a further update shortly, since the Hawaii changes are not yet appearing on their flight schedule.

Visitors are leaving.

While driving to the grocery store on Kauai just now, we saw almost no rental cars, which is in sharp contrast to the norm. That is another clear indication that visitors are heeding the request of the governor to terminate and postpone Hawaii vacations at this time.

Alaska Airlines fee waivers and cancellations.

As of 3/25, the airline is offering waivers for tickets purchased through February 26 for travel through May 31 and tickets purchased since then for travel through February 28, 2021. Changes are free (except for fare changes ). If you cancel, the funds are redeposited for future travel without penalty. New travel must occur by February 2021.

Also awaiting Southwest Hawaii and legacy airline schedule cuts.

We just checked the other airlines too (American, Delta, United), as we’re awaiting word from them on their Hawaii flight cuts going forward. There has been no schedule update yet from Southwest Airlines, but they have indicated we will see changes this week. The legacy airlines haven’t said much either, and we still see them planning to fly to Hawaii during the quarantine. That doesn’t really add up to us in any way.

Beat of Hawaii tips:

With regard to cancelled flights on any airline, US DOT states: “If your flight is cancelled and you choose to cancel your trip as a result, you are entitled to a refund for the unused transportation – even for non-refundable tickets.  You are also entitled to a refund for any bag fee that you paid, and any extras you may have purchased, such as a seat assignment.” 

This is not the time to visit Hawaii. You are going to have a 14-day in-your-room quarantine, most hotels are closing, restaurants are either take-out or closed. Getting food as a visitor will be an issue. Beaches are closing. Activities, parks and monuments are all suspended. 

16 thoughts on “Alaska Airlines Hawaii Cuts: “Critical Travel” Only”

  1. Alaska Airlines has refused to change our flights unless we take an ‘expiring credit’.
    The VRBO rental has avoided issuing a refund because “they cant find anyone to process the refund”. (I guess the Chargex machine and carbon paper have run out!)

    The only hope I have to avoid total loss is to put the family on the plane and explain nicely to the Mayor why we had to visit.

    I’m in quar antine already but its pouring rain here. Might be an upgrade.

  2. Hi! We have our honeymoon scheduled for may25th to Kauai with Alaska airlines. I am reading this post and I want to see if I understood completely. Alaska is most likely going to cancel my trip because they are cancelling 70% of flights through may 31?

  3. Aloha

    Thanks for the tip about waiting to cancel flights. We are scheduled on Alaska Airlines for May 15. Almost took the account credit, but refund is better if it is possible. At least we can see how this whole thing goes in the next month or two.

    It will be first time to miss spring trip to Kauai in 15 years, so there is sadness. But also thankful for that run, and also wanting to show respect for Kauai and all its residents by staying home. Be safe and be well, and enjoy the peace and quiet.

    Aloha nui

  4. We’re hunkered down here at our home in Pennsylvania, 90 miles from New York City, determined to stay healthy.

    Our son has been living in Koloa for the past three years. He’s working from home and we worry he’s feeling very isolated. His gym finally closed earlier this week and other than working, there’s no much left for him to do.

    Your governor and the Kauai mayor are doing the right thing in locking the country down. Thanks for all you do to keep us informed. We rely on you and our daily email update from The Garden Island newspaper for the information we need.

    We pray our son stays healthy and safe. That goes for everyone in Hawaii.


  5. Alaskan Airlines has already started canceling flight. I checked in for my flight from Lithe to San Jose for tomorrow 3-26 and a hour later, I get email that it was cancelled. Flight was less than half full. I called for new flight and was told it was canceled for weather. Plane was coming from Portland, but they haven’t canceled other flights from Portland for tomorrow morning. I’m on sa flight with 1 or 2 empty seat to Seattle and it will take twice as long to get home. Thanks Alaskan. At least have the balls totell the true when you screw your customers.

  6. Hello Beat of Hawaii, I am sure it is a very difficult time for people affected by the loss of tourism but hope that perhaps a silver lining is having the island to yourselves. Personally I would find it interesting if you’d blog about how things are different without visitors. Thank you.

    1. Hi Aw,

      good question. From a village resident point of view, Kailua Kona town here is finally simply deserted. Until yesterday, most restaurants still offered limited takeout service. But today, EVERYTHING along our main drag, Ali’i Drive, is simply deserted. You see stacked chairs everywhere. Except for a few eateries around the main super markets. The remaining retail employees manning the doors and cash registers are trying to adjust as well as possible. You can literally see fear in their eyes. Some wear masks, some wear gloves, some behind newly mounted plexiglass panels. The whole scene definitely resembles science fiction. It simply feels unreal.


  7. My impression driving to Lihue early this week, other than reduced traffic, was all the vehicles were local: Toyota Tacoma, Hondas and various beaters, like mine!!! Also went to Anini Beach on weekend and cruised right through Kapa’a going and coming. We could get use to that! But truly, we are both unemployed and can’t wait for tourism to resume!

  8. Punahou Alumni Luau is June 6, 2020. Holding my breath, have Hawaiian res for June 3-8.

    Mahalo Nui for your updates.


  9. What’s your take on the cost of rental cars going up or down. We own a condo on Big Island but rely on rental cars while we’re here for several months. Needless to say it’s always our biggest expense. (I know, we need to buy a car.) Seems prices should b going down. And as an aside we always use Hawaii Discount car rental. Always the best deals. Thanks for your insight.

    1. Hi Kandyce.

      Good question. It is all so fluid right now that it is hard to predict. As with airfares, should be lower cost initially on return to tourism, then after that, it is a consolidating industry and prices were definitely going up, up, up.


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