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Please post your questions in the correct thread. This thread, as the title clearly states, is for general Hawaii questions only.

If you have any questions that pertains to a particular island, post it in the appropriate island thread. See below for links to all island threads.

You'd get far better answers there, and chances are that your issue was already discussed at length too.

DansMeals: Hawaii For The Kosher Traveler:
-Part 1: General Info And The Island Of Oahu
-Part 2: The Big Island of Hawaii
-Part 3: Maui
-Part 4: Kauai

Related DD Posts:
-Ultimate Hawaii Mileage Chart and Everything You Need to Know About the Hawaiian Islands (2015)
-Trip Notes: Maui No Ka ‘Oi (2014)
-Trip Notes Kauai: Heaven On Earth (2014)
-The Hawaiian Islands. (2011)
-Traveling To Hawaii…With A 5 Month Old (2011)
-View From The Room (2011)
-Pearl Harbor…70 Years (2011)
-Shaloha! (2011)
-Hawaii Trip Notes: Kauai (2009)
-Hawaii Trip Notes: Oahu (2009)
-Which Miles To Use To Fly To Hawaii?

Related DDF Destination Threads:
-Big Island Of Hawaii Master Thread
-Kauai Master Thread
-Maui Master Thread
-Oahu Master Thread
-Lanai, Molokai, and Niihau, Hawaii Master Thread

Background on Hawaiian Islands
You've probably heard of Honolulu. That's the state capital and is located on island of Oahu, the main island with the largest airport. Honolulu hosts the famous Waikiki Beach and if you look at pictures, it looks like Miami. One long beach with a strip of hotels. Most DDFers say to go to one of the other 3 main islands which are less touristy and the hotels are more spread out. In no particular order, the other islands are Maui, Kauai and Hawaii (yes, that's the name of one of the islands. It's also known as The Big Island - confusing because Big Island sounds like it's the "Main Island", but Oahu is the main island). Direct flights from NYC only go to HNL. You can get direct flights from other cities (LAX, SFO, OAK, SJC, SAN, DEN, DFW, PHX, SEA, ORD as examples) to the other islands. Hawaii is amazing - have fun! The main airport codes are:
Oahu: HNL
Maui: OGG
Kauai: LIH
The Big Island: KOA, ITO (2 airports on 2 different sides of the island)

Interisland flights:
Hawaiian is the main interisland carrier and flies HNL, LIH, OGG, KOA, and ITO. They have countless flights each day and are nearly always on time - often even early. Never book a tight connection hoping that the interisland flight will be delayed.

Go and Island Air fly from HNL. Mokulele flies from HNL and KOA, as well as to Kapalua (JHM), Hana (HNM), Molokai (MKK), Lanai (LNY), and Waimea-Kohala (MUE) on the Big Island. Hawaiian's subsidiary Ohana flies HNL to MKK and LNY.

There is a DansDeals corporate account for Hawaiian Airlines that allows you to take 2 free bags per person, up to a $50 value per flight (see baggage fees chart). It also gives free standby on earlier flights. You can email jj@dansdeals.com with the exact flights, dates, and time that you want, passengers names and dates of birth, and the price you found on hawaiianair.com to make a booking. A $6 per person per leg fee applies.

Alternatively, you can also use 5k AA, 6k UA or 7.5k HA miles each way to fly interisland. You can use 15k DL pesos for a RT interisland. United allows a free stopover on a round-trip, so for instance you can fly HNL-LIH-OGG-HNL for just 12K miles.
HA has several tiers, similar to DL, the lowest tier is the only one that's available using partner miles, but with HA miles you can purchase tickets that are otherwise unavailable for additional miles.

@Yehuda's thoughts on deciding between Kauai and Maui:
Here's a list of the main activities on both islands. Decide what interests you, and then you'll know where to go.

LIH has what many say to be one of the best hikes in the world - Kalalau Trail. Most people will only do the first part, but it's still very highly regarded. The views atop Waimea Canyon are breathtaking, yet OGG also has breathtaking views at Haleakala. LIH also has some supposedly awesome off-roading on Miloli'i Ridge Road. Sunset at the 12-mile long Polihale Beach is supposed to be quite the sunset. A helicopter tour of LIH is generally said to be much better than a heli tour of OGG. If the water is calm, Queen's Bath, which is a natural pool in the ocean you can swim in that's protected from the ocean's force by hardened lava, is SICK, but OGG has the same thing by the Olivine Pools. Kayaking down the Wailua River to "Secret Falls" is supposed to be great as well. Of course, the luxurious, tropical amazingness of the GHK is a huge boost for LIH, except for its beach, but the great Po'ipu Beach is 5 minutes away.

OGG has the Road to Hana, which is an incredible drive through what feels like a rainforest with tons of opportunities to take small hikes to waterfalls and pools. It's just wow wow wow. Sunrise at the top Haleakala is not to be missed. A boat trip to snorkel by Molokini Crater offers what is supposedly some of the best snorkeling visibility in the world. The hotels are also magical, perhaps to a lesser degree than GHK, but the beaches by the main hotels are a big plus over GHK's beach. EDIT: The Grand Wailea in Maui is a gorgeous hotel that rivals the GHK (and its lazy river actually moves :P). Add in the fact that its beach (Wailea Beach) is swimmable and doesn't require the albeit short drive to Po'ipu Beach that the GHK does, I'm not sure that the GHK should be a reason enough to tip the scales in favor of Kauai over Maui anymore. When the water cooperates, Olivine Pools are supposed to match Queen's Bath on LIH. Warren & Annabelle's Magic Show is supposed to be a great night out.

So, pick the types of activities you'd want to do and then you'll have your island. I personally liked OGG better mostly because of the RTH, but to be fair, I did miss out on the Kalalau Trail due to weather. However, if you mainly want to just relax and be in awe, go to LIH and stay at the GHK.
« Last edited by SSLPhD on May 17, 2017, 12:01:22 AM »

Author Topic: Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?  (Read 123567 times)

Offline Hudi

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Re: Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?
« Reply #90 on: July 31, 2011, 10:38:48 PM »
$290/night for the GHK ain't bad at all if you can swing it.

Otherwise maybe a few nights on the big island to see some volcanoes erupting/go to a green sand beach/horseback ride through rivers and waterfalls/scuba with manta rays/hike through past eruptions/swim in a private volcanically heated spring/drive up the highest mountain from its base in the world to a drop-dead sunset with a crystal clear stargazing show while staying in a quaint Hilo/Volcano area treehouse before heading over to RHW (if you want a shul with meals) or WOV/SRP for shabbos?

Yeah I checked the GHK.

Sounds awesome :) Where do you recommend staying on the big island?

Also where on your forum is it legal to switch spg free nights for hyatt?

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Re: Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?
« Reply #91 on: July 31, 2011, 11:13:35 PM »
Yeah I checked the GHK.

Sounds awesome :) Where do you recommend staying on the big island?

Also where on your forum is it legal to switch spg free nights for hyatt?
Heh, I can name drop like that for any island.  Concierge buyers also get my personal guide to each island, although I've turned down every inquiring client for the past few months...sorry guys!

Can't trade on the forum...sorry!
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Offline westman812

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Re: Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?
« Reply #92 on: September 07, 2011, 12:20:04 PM »
First time post, long time reader,
Just got back from Kauai and Maui, and I'd like to help out. Took a lot of advice from reading Dans trip notes, including the "revealed" books, as well as other advice on the Web. Here goes nothing..
Flights- Booking in advance would seem to be the most logical idea but I found that this wasnt necc true. Case in point; initially booked 2 80k CO business class tix 5-6 months out and the only flights I found were in and out of HNL. Not sure if there's a forum on this but other forums have info;if going inter-island from HNL it gets tricky as far as deciding how long to allow for connection(some factors; diff terminal for interisland flights, some situations requiring you to recheck baggage, agriculture screening, etc). Obviously its easier to fly direct to your island of choice. Taking advantage of the CO flight change policy, within 3 weeks of the trip, other options opened up(had to burn the AMEX plat credit for change fee bec it was within 21 days)and i grabbed it. Final itenerary UA (P.S service) JFK-SFO, UA SFO-LIH, island air(sep booking) LIH-OGG, UA OGG-LAX, UA(P.S Service) LAX-JFK. One final comment on the flights; I found that with United, the only well worth domestic flights flying business were PS service(google or check forum for more info on it, we actually got first class which are lie flat), the domestic first class seats are really not that impressive(I can't speak for other airlines), this coming from a lifelong coach flyer, so I'm not spoiled. I felt it was special for a honeymoon but if you don't have a million miles then imho, it's just not worth it. The united 767 flights from SFO to OGG, which i saw next to my plane, still have the old paint scheme, and not the one pre merger(although I'm sure that's gonna change), many airlines don't put much money into the HI flights.

Food-Brought 2 frozen boxes, maui seemed to have more options for kosher products(read above posts) but both are mad expensive when it comes to prices so bring whatever you can.

Rental car- Utilized Hertz from AMEX America getaways, forgot which option but for 380 I got a Tahoe for a week in LIH(great for 4wd road at Waimea), a mustang in OGG for a week, and still have 1000 points leftover!

Hotels- GH Kauai=amazing. see Kauai forum for my post on my experience and tip for booking. Private villa with private pool(for previously concerned poster)  in Maui.

Will post various ideas on activities in respective forums but generally we liked kauai for it's quaintness, plethora of activities, and gorgeous scenery. Maui is nice too but we were spoiled from Kauai.

I'll leave it at that for now...My sincere thanks to Dan and all the knowledgable people posting here and elsewhere for allowing us to have a well prepared trip.

Offline Dan

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Re: Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?
« Reply #93 on: September 07, 2011, 02:51:19 PM »
Thanks for the report!

The only worthwhile *A business flight to Hawaii are the CO nonstops from IAH or EWR to HNL that have BusinessFirst seats.  Personally I would fly CLE-IAH-HNL-LIH over CLE-LAX-LIH to fly in the CO BF seats.
Soon they will be lie-flat but for now they're still the very decent barcaloungers.
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Offline westman812

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Re: Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?
« Reply #94 on: September 07, 2011, 04:51:10 PM »
Well then I'm guessing you never flew PS service(although reading your site for so long, i wouldn't be surprised if you had)...obv u wouldnt ever NEED to(and you seem to love EWR as your fav NYC airport), but JFK based crews are second to none, first class ticketholders get access to Int'l red carpet lounge(which i might add have great office space to work or daven when connecting at 5AM in LAX), and just announced plans to install the int'l lie flat seat(with entertainment) throughout business class on every jet, make  any other star alliance domestic upgrade hard to compete with the PS service. just sayin ;)

Offline Dan

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Re: Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?
« Reply #95 on: September 07, 2011, 05:40:44 PM »
Well then I'm guessing you never flew PS service(although reading your site for so long, i wouldn't be surprised if you had)...obv u wouldnt ever NEED to(and you seem to love EWR as your fav NYC airport), but JFK based crews are second to none, first class ticketholders get access to Int'l red carpet lounge(which i might add have great office space to work or daven when connecting at 5AM in LAX), and just announced plans to install the int'l lie flat seat(with entertainment) throughout business class on every jet, make  any other star alliance domestic upgrade hard to compete with the PS service. just sayin ;)
But that only gets you to LAX.  Still have a long flight to the islands.
If you can fly EWR-HNL in BF on an 80K award then you're in an international seat for much longer than just JFK-LAX.  The interisland connection is very easy.
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Offline mguy

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Re: Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?
« Reply #96 on: September 07, 2011, 09:40:45 PM »
Quote
If you can fly EWR-HNL in BF on an 80K award

Is there a trick to finding these reward tickets? For example, just looked at continental.com for EWR to NHL and I see the 40K-each-way BF seat available on only 5 individual days between now and July 2012. Do elite status holders get better availability on these?

Offline Dan

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Re: Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?
« Reply #97 on: September 07, 2011, 09:46:20 PM »
Is there a trick to finding these reward tickets? For example, just looked at continental.com for EWR to NHL and I see the 40K-each-way BF seat available on only 5 individual days between now and July 2012. Do elite status holders get better availability on these?
Yes, availability is much better for Platinums.  You can check Platinum BF availability by searching for a paid flight, clicking on fare class next to the flight, and seeing the number of seats available in O class.

Also I happen to be hogging 2 BF seats on several EWR/IAH-HNL flights while I try to plan a future trip.  Sue me ;)  They were O class mostly anyway.

Also look for IAH-HNL as CO does fly some BF planes between EWR-IAH.
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Offline aussiebochur

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Re: Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?
« Reply #98 on: September 07, 2011, 09:51:42 PM »
Yes, availability is much better for Platinums.  You can check Platinum BF availability by searching for a paid flight, clicking on fare class next to the flight, and seeing the number of seats available in O class.

Also I happen to be hogging 2 BF seats on several EWR/IAH-HNL flights while I try to plan a future trip.  Sue me ;)  They were O class mostly anyway.

Also look for IAH-HNL as CO does fly some BF planes between EWR-IAH.
Perhaps drop a line here when you confirm your plans and are about to cancel the others?

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Re: Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?
« Reply #99 on: September 07, 2011, 10:09:43 PM »
Perhaps drop a line here when you confirm your plans and are about to cancel the others?
When CO cancelled a CLE-EWR flight causing a misconnect for the EWR-HNL they rerouted me CLE-IAH-HNL but the EWR-HNL inventory did not ever return.

But I will post next time, bl"n.
Worth noting the calendar was yellow for all the BF HNL trips I booked...
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Offline aussiebochur

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Re: Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?
« Reply #100 on: September 07, 2011, 10:13:51 PM »
When CO cancelled a CLE-EWR flight causing a misconnect for the EWR-HNL they rerouted me CLE-IAH-HNL but the EWR-HNL inventory did not ever return.

But I will post next time, bl"n.
Worth noting the calendar was yellow for all the BF HNL trips I booked...
I do find the calendar to be incorrect at times, especially with O inventory and partner flights.

But its a great tool for a quick overview...

Offline Yellow

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Re: Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?
« Reply #101 on: October 23, 2011, 06:38:40 PM »
I'm looking to book 3 RT tickets to Hawaii from ORD sometime in Jan. using BA miles. Is it way too late to attempt to find availability? I tried looking on the BA site and found nothing, but its highly likely that i just didnt know what i was doing.
« Last Edit: October 23, 2011, 06:41:46 PM by Yellow »

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Re: Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?
« Reply #102 on: October 23, 2011, 06:46:42 PM »
I'm looking to book 3 RT tickets to Hawaii from ORD sometime in Jan. using BA miles. Is it way too late to attempt to find availability? I tried looking on the BA site and found nothing, but its highly likely that i just didnt know what i was doing.
Search on AA.com
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Re: Hawaii Master Thread: General Questions And Which Island To Visit?
« Reply #103 on: October 23, 2011, 06:54:40 PM »
Search on AA.com
Just did... Still unsuccessful
Do you think calling would help?

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