When everyone found out we were moving to Hawaii 3.5 years ago, the first thing they said was..OH MY GOSH! WE CAN’T WAIT TO COME VISIT! We moved here and months passed. Crickets in the visitor department. Finally our friends a family gave it to us straight…We can’t afford to come visit! Do you know how expensive airfare to Hawaii is?! Ah yes, flying to an island in the middle of the Pacific is not going to be cheap. But oh man, is it so worth it. I’ve racked up nearly 150,000 frequent flier miles since we’ve lived here, so I’m pretty much a pro when it comes to booking my tickets. I figured I should put this good knowledge out there for the rest of you if you’re hoping to capitalize on visiting one day 🙂 Today I’m sharing 8 tips for finding cheap airfare to Hawaii – when to book, where to look and how far in advance to start thinking about it! Ready? Let’s go.
8 Tips For Finding Cheap Flights To Hawaii
1. Nail down your travel window about 6 months in advance. I say window and not dates, because being flexible is key. Booking a Wednesday to Wednesday trip will save you money, because you’ll be avoiding travel on busier weekend days. I’ve found that booking about 6-8 weeks in advance of your trip gives you the best deal, but sometimes you just can’t wait that long!
2. Book on a Tuesday! I’ve always found my cheapest fares posted on Tuesdays.
3. Set a KAYAK alert. We’ve had airfare drop nearly $200 and because we had an alert set up, we knew to buy then! They’ll send you e-mails letting you know if they anticipate flights going up or dropping in price, so I’m a firm believer in this tool.
4. Some people don’t realize that Hawaii has more than one airport. I know, it seems crazy, but it’s true! Oahu is the main island, but many travelers are looking for a Kauai or Maui getaway. The secret is fly into O’ahu and get on a cheap island hopper flight. You can sometimes score them for as low as $60 roundtrip!
5. If time is not of the essence, consider taking a red eye or early morning flight. These flying times are pretty undesirable, so if you’re flexible — it’s worth the cheaper price!
6. This goes along with #5, but if you can be flexible — accept a layover. When we recently flew to Chicago for a wedding, we had a 12 hour layover in Seattle, which allowed us to get out and explore the city. It was also $400 cheaper!
7. I know it seems a little ridiculous, but sometimes booking two, one-way tickets is cheaper by about $100 dollars. Consider this if you’ll be traveling for an extended period of time.
8. Check social media for deals! Hawaiian Airlines and Island Air are great about doing flash sales and promotional offers. Plus, they offer great discounts for military service members, local (often referred to as Kama’ina) AAA + more.