Vanishing Two-Across Seating. Flights To Hawaii. What To Do?

Vanishing Two-Across Seating. Flights To Hawaii. What To Do?

While many of you like the upcoming Hawaiian Airlines Dreamliner, there’s one thing you’re very sorry to see go. That is the change to the now industry standard of all 3-across seating. So having two seats alone at the window may soon be a memory. And it isn’t just at Hawaiian Airlines that this change is occurring. Read on for what to expect on all the airlines flying to Hawaii and what you can still do to avoid 3-across seating.

A comment left by Patrick regarding the new Dreamliners said, “What I will miss most is the 2-4-2 layout of the economy seat layout. With that pattern, if you were traveling with just one other person, you had your own little “area.” With the new 3-3-3, you won’t be able to do that anymore.”

Greg added, “I love the A330 layout for traveling as a couple. I’d much rather fly a decades-old A330 in the 2-3-2 configuration than a brand-new 787 where we’re going to have to deal with another passenger in our row. Enjoy it while it lasts.” And James commented, “That would be a negative for couples or families of 4, unlike the 2-4-2 of the A330.

Here’s how the seating layouts work, airline by airline, on flights to Hawaii.

American Airlines Hawaii seats in economy.

A321neo: 3-3 seating.

Boeing 777: 3-4-3 seating.

Boeing 787: 3-3-3 seating

Delta Airlines Hawaii seats in economy.

Airbus A321: 3-3 seating.

Airbus A330: 3-3-3 seating.

Airbus A350: 3-3-3 seating.

Hawaiian Airlines seats in economy.

Airbus A321: 3-3 seating.

Airbus A330: 2-4-2 seating.

Boeing 787: 3-3-3 seating.

United Airlines seats in economy.

Boeing 737: 3-3 seating.

Boeing 767: 2-3-2 seating.

Boeing 777: 3-4-3 seating.

Boeing 787: 3-3-3 seating.

Not happy with 3-across seating to Hawaii? Here’s what to do.

  • Fly on a plane that still offers 2-across seating. The choices are few, as indicated above.
  • Look for planes that have a few rows of 2-across seats at the very back of the plane, where it gets narrow. These can also be at other places in the aircraft as aisle access and other reasons necessitate. However, these seats can have issues, so compare seat maps and see what others say. These may also be charged for as premium seats.
  • Buy an extra seat in economy on any airline (other than Southwest, which doesn’t allow that).
  • Fly in premium economy on wide-body Hawaii flights that offer 2-across seating. The airlines offering this are American, Delta, and United.

If those options don’t work, consider the advantages of wide-body flights to Hawaii.

First of all, there’s more room on board with multiple aisles. That makes people crawling over each other far less common. Next, you don’t have flight attendants and customers vying for the same aisle access as on narrow-body planes. And finally, something about a wide-body plane is iconic—especially flying long distances. Do you pick the convenience of narrow-body because it can reach airports like Kauai, or opt for connecting through another island to have a wide-body experience?

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34 thoughts on “Vanishing Two-Across Seating. Flights To Hawaii. What To Do?”

  1. It is disappointing that the newer Jet Aircraft have gotten away from 2 across seating, I would pay more for it…

    1. My family of 3 recently flew to Kauai via Hawaiian Airlines. I paid for economy upgrade so that my 6’2″ husband could have legroom. Upon boarding, we realized we did not get what we paid for, as the planes were changed. The flight Attendant said that Hawaiian “keeps doing this” and to contact them for reimbursement. I tried and got no response. I’m out $120! Would Hawaiian check this out and help me? RT Oakland. CA. 12-21-23. Return flight 12-27-23.

  2. Yes! This topic is on my mind as since booking my flight to Hawaii in Feb for a trip in Oct Delta switched my seating (purposefully paid for comfort plus and 2 across seating) to 3 across. They also have all of the Delta One seats, except for 9 blocked. It makes no sense. I am beside myself with frustration and when I spoke with an agent she was pretty much like “well, that’s just how it is”

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