United Majorly Increasing Service to Hawaii!

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While it may sound cliche, I think my favorite travel destination is Hawaii. At the very least, it is certainly my happy place whether I am there by myself, for an adults-only trip, or with the family. It is far, but it is so worth it once you get there. That said, I am thrilled that beginning later this year United is really upping their service to the Hawaiian Islands from a number of cities!

Beginning December 20, United will increase service to Hawaii from its hubs in Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles and San Francisco and will end up with 40 daily flights from the mainland to Hawaii. I do wish this had included a Houston to Maui or Lihue service! 

In addition to the increased frequencies, United is also going to offer lie-flat seating on ALL overnight flights between Hawaii and Chicago, Denver, Newark, Washington DC, and Houston. Yee-haw! My two most disappointing premium cabin flights have been to/from Hawaii, on United and most recently on American. Hawaii is a long route from the east coast and middle of the country, but it is consistently a route where the older planes are frequently, presumably because business travel is lower than to some other destinations. I can barely describe how happy I am that United is finally going to scrap the old lounger business class seats to Hawaii in place of lie-flats on the overnight routes. I can guarantee this will give United huge preference from me whether flying from Houston or connecting in one of the other four cities where they are ‘promising’ lie-flat seats on the overnight flights.

The old way to fly United business class to Hawaii…

Not only are there going to be lie-flats, but they will also feature the Saks Fifth Avenue duvets and pillows. Yes, yes, yes, please! I’m ready!

Increased United Service to Hawaii

Not only are they upping their lie-flat game to Hawaii, but they are majorly increasing service to the islands from five cities.

Denver International Airport (DEN)

Beginning December 20, service between Denver and Kona (KOA), Lihue (LIH) and Maui (OGG) will increase from seasonal to daily year-round service. Daily service from Denver to Honolulu will continue.

Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD)

United offers the only nonstop service between Chicago and Hawaii, and they will begin to offer 5x per week service to Maui starting December 20, up from Saturday-only service now.

Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)

In addition to United’s 5x per day LAX service to Honolulu, they will increase service between LAX and Hilo, Kona, Maui and Lihue beginning December 20. LAX – Hilo goes from 5x per week to daily, LAX – Kona goes from daily to 2x per day, LAX – Maui goes from 2x daily to 3x daily, and LAX – Lihue goes from daily to 2x per day starting December 20.

San Francisco International Airport (SFO)

In addition to its 5x daily service between SFO and Honolulu, United will increase service to Kona, Lihue and Maui beginning December 20. Beginning December 20, SFO – Kona goes from 2x daily to 3x daily, SFO – Lihue goes from daily to 2x per day, and SFO – Maui goes from 3x daily to 5x daily!

I’m very excited about these announcements and frankly can’t think of a place I would rather see more United flights to than Hawaii! Getting saver economy awards to Hawaii on United isn’t terribly hard, but the good seats are another story and they are very, very tight on many routes. There is no guarantee that the increase in capacity will loosen up first class saver awards to Hawaii, but I am sure hoping that will pan out, at least during the lower demand seasons.
Anyone else doing a happy hula to celebrate this announcement?

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  1. I think you mean “cliche'”? If so, there are good reasons it’s cliche’ to say Hawaii is your favorite place: weather, beaches, mountains, food…etc., etc. Hawaii is definitely one cliche’ I don’t mind being a part of.

  2. We just booked AUS>OGG in August and noticed there’s more lay-flat options than before even for our summer trip. This is exciting and might push us over the edge to make this an annual excursion. 🙂

  3. I own a vacation rental at Honua Kai in Maui and this is wonderful, wonderful news. I am also in Houston and hated the United Business offerings. I too wish there was a Houston-Maui direct!

    P.S. Love your blog and it has helped me a lot. If you ever need a studio condo in Maui, let me know and I am happy to get you a very discounted rate.

  4. We are flying from Maui to Chicago non stop on Saturday November 25, I have booked first class with points, the seat map is showing lie flat seats, my concern is that seat guru is not showing the lie flat seats. I used a lot of points to get these seats and only because they were lie flat, what are the chances of us not getting the lie flat seats?

    • I think you will be okay because United is saying lie-flats on the overnight routes from Hawaii to Chicago beginning this summer. Fingers crossed they stick to it, but I think your odds are very, very good.

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