As Hawaii continues to struggle with tourism, both following the Lahaina fire and with multiple other challenges, an ongoing reduction in flights is occurring and may continue. Mostly, these are Maui related. Sometimes, these flight changes come in the form of cancellations without adequate notice, as we reported yesterday in Hawaiian Airlines Cancels Many Routes Abruptly.
Southwest cut some Hawaii routes and reduces others for now.
Southwest is again operating its Hawaii flights with reduced service compared with both their 2023 summer schedule and their peak of Hawaii flying schedule of 2022. These changes are reflected in their online booking portal and are bookable through June 3, 2024.
Southwest Hawaii flights are operated seasonally.
As we saw last year, Southwest is once again using a seasonal Hawaii flight schedule for this fall and winter. Some Southwest Hawaii routes continue to operate year-round, while others only operate in Spring and Summer.
Many airlines operate flights several times weekly instead of every day. And both Alaska and Hawaiian are two airlines that utilize that type of schedule too. Southwest has decided to go the same way with those routes that are in less demand and don’t warrant daily flights all year.
Three Southwest Hawaii routes return on March 9.
- Los Angeles to Kauai
- Los Angeles to Kona
- Sacramento to Maui
These Seven Southwest Hawaii routes are not returning.
Other Southwest Hawaii routes that were previously terminated include those below:
- Phoenix to Kauai. Removed from schedule.
- Phoenix to Kona. Removed from schedule.
- Sacramento to Kauai. Removed from schedule.
- Sacramento to Kona. Removed from schedule.
- San Diego to Kauai. Removed from schedule.
- San Diego to Kona. Removed from schedule.
- San Diego to Maui. Removed from schedule.
Delta Air Lines’ Hawaii pullback continues.
The airline has stopped flights from Minneapolis to Maui and from Atlanta to Maui. Passengers will either need to change to interisland flights in Honolulu or change planes on the mainland. Those flights appear to have been canceled indefinitely, and they do not reappear on the remainder of Delta’s schedule through summer 2024.
These Delta Airlines Maui flights are unaffected.
In addition to its flights to the other Hawaiian Islands, Delta continues to fly to Maui nonstop from both Los Angeles and Seattle. Delta nonstop flights from Salt Lake City to Maui are set to return to their schedule again from December through March, at least at this time.
Delta Air Lines Maui airfare deals due to lack of demand
The airline is still offering nonstop Maui flights from Los Angeles starting at $99 each way, including all taxes and fees. Nonstop Seattle to Maui flights start at $129 each way.
United Airlines reduced some Maui flights.
United Airlines has removed nonstop flights to Maui from both Chicago and Denver. The Denver route is set to return at the end of October, while the Chicago route will not return until December 21, after which it is currently scheduled to operate five times weekly.
Hawaiian Airlines pulls back from Bay Area and halts New Zealand flights.
Hawaiian Airlines has not flown its regular route from Oakland to Lihue since early September, primarily due to the A321 problems. That route is still on schedule to restart in mid-December, in time for the holiday season. At least barring any further delays associated with their A321neos.
Starting March 31, Hawaiian will also stop service to Auckland. Beginning
next September November 2024, service may resume, according to the airline. It’s not clear to us if Hawaiian will come back on that route at all. One of the problems is the lack of inbound traffic to Hawaii, due to the devaluation of the New Zealand dollar, which is now just 58 cents USD. The Auckland flight only came back post-Covid in July 2022, after being on hiatus for over two years. Hawaiian hopes to resume the route.
Note: After we published this article we had an email from Hawaiian Airlines. It read in part: Starting next year, we will turn our year-round, thrice-weekly Honolulu-Auckland service into a seasonal route during the New Zealand summer (the northern hemisphere’s winter/spring). We will pause our AKL service Apr. 2, 2024, and resume it on Nov. 15, 2024. We are offering guests booked to travel on affected dates options to take alternate flights or receive a refund.
Hawaiian aircraft switch-up continues during exhaustive engine repairs.
The airline has replaced troubled A321neo narrow-body planes with their reliable A330 aircraft on multiple routes. It hopes to return again to the more cost-effective and appropriate neos starting early next year.
Those routes include Sacramento and San Diego to Honolulu. The switch-up of aircraft will continue while engine problems on the A321 are resolved. So you may sometimes be pleasantly surprised to find the widebody. One example is their Oakland to Honolulu route, which will see the big plane from later this year until early next year.
Alaska Airlines and American Airlines.
Both Alaska Airlines and American Airlines also reduced some Hawaii flight frequencies in light of lessening visitor demand following the Lahaina fire. The Seattle Times reported “Alaska has cut one Maui flight from Seattle and trimmed flight capacity to Maui from its other hubs.”
A commenter noted, “I’ve also noticed Alaska Airlines cutting their LIH – SAN route to one day per week this winter.”