The airline with the best average rating is Hawaiian Airlines with 6.8/10.
The average flight time is 0 hours and 45 minutes.More information
Hello everyone and welcome back to this series of trip reports! I do apologize for the delay in posting as I had to study for a big exam but without further ado here are my thoughts on my flight from Kailua-Kona to Honolulu - onboard a Hawaiian 717!
There are currently two main non-stop options from Kona to Honolulu; Hawaiian on their Boeing 717 and Southwest on their 737-800. At the time of this flight the only option was Hawaiian as Southwest had not begun their service which worked well with me as I'll take any opportunity to fly on a Boeing 717!
After a few restful days in Kona, it was time to head on a quick hop over to Honolulu!
After dropping off the rental car, it was a quick ride over to the terminal.
After arriving at Departures it was time to check in using the self serve kiosks. Hawaiian Airlines offers free seat selection at the time of booking and I was able to select seat 12F, a seat just before the wing. The self serve kiosks were a little difficult to use as they lagged after every step but after around 10-15 minutes I was able to check in, pay for my checked bag, and get the bag dropped off at the counter. Thankfully the line for TSA was very short and I was through in around 5 minutes.
KOA offers an open-air terminal which was a nice change. There was ample covered seating however the gate areas can get a bit crowded especially during flight boarding. Moreover, there were not many food options in the terminal so it would be a good idea to eat before entering the airport.
KOA airport does have a few power outlets distributed around the airport but they are very hard to come by so I resorted to heading over to the Air Canada gate (which was vacant due to the 737-MAX8 grounding) to charge my phone.
The good thing about having an open terminal is that it offers some great spots for plane spotting! Watching the earlier flight to Honolulu arrive and depart (have to say I was pretty impressed by the speed at which they turned the plane around!)
And not long after the sun began to set providing a gorgeous sunset as well as some Boeing 757's from the mainland US as well as a pair of Hawaiian 717's one of which would be taking me to Honolulu.
Boarding and Takeoff
Not long after it was time to board my first Boeing 717 flight! Boarding was called right on time however a long line already formed well before boarding which meant that expect for first class, everyone else boarded all at once regardless of zone number.
Boarding again was done via a ramp which meant a great view of the aircraft while boarding.
And settling into seat 12F. The seat pitch was a bit tight at 30 inches and the seat had very little padding however it was reasonable for the short flight. The seat also has a small tray table.
And a view of the safety card.
And not long after boarding was completed and it was time to head off to Honolulu! A view of the cabin during the taxi to the runway.
Everything was looking well for a on-time departure, however, once the aircraft got to the runway, the captain got on the PA and informed us that due to a computer issue, calculations had to be completed by hand so we would have to wait on the taxiway until that was completed in order to take off. After a few moments, the paperwork was filled out and it was time to take off with some amazing engine sounds!
A view of Kona after takeoff.
Shortly after takeoff, the flight attendants came around the cabin offering a choice of complementary juice or water or alcohol for purchase. I went for the juice option and it was nice and refreshing although it was a tiny bit too sweet.
The seatbelt sign remained on for the entire duration of the flight and the flight attendants were pretty strict about having passengers staying in the seats so I was unable to get a picture of the washroom. Hawaiian does not offer any inflight entertainment of WiFi on this flight however the duration of this flight is short enough that as soon as the flight attendants came around the cabin to collect the cups, the plane began its descent into Honolulu.
Landing and Arrival
Slowly approaching Honolulu.
And after a quick turn onto final approach, it was time to land in Honolulu.
And a view of the somewhat empty terminals during the taxi to the inter-island terminal at HNL
And Here We Go Again!
And just as luck would have it our aircraft came to a stop on the taxiway and the captain came back on the PA to announce that there were no free gates so we would have to wait until one of the delayed aircraft leaves the gate in order for us to taxi in. Conveniently, my university grades were scheduled to be released during this time so I had the unique opportunity to find out my grades for the semester on a Hawaiian 717!
After around 10-15 minutes (and the wave of emotions that comes with finding out your grades), the engines came back to life as a gate opened up.
And pulling into the gate at the inter-island terminal next to a fellow Hawaiian 717.
After arriving at the gate it was a quick walk over to the baggage claim and after a 20 minute wait, I got my bag and was ready to explore Honolulu!
Overall, it was an enjoyable first flight with Hawaiian. I was really excited to fly on the Boeing 717 and was not disappointed, especially with the engine sounds during takeoff! I do regret taking a night flight as it meant that there were no views of the islands inflight. The flight attendants were very cheerful and helpful despite this flight being in the late evening and the captain was very apologetic about the delays both before takeoff and after landing. The cabin was nice and clean but the seats were pretty hard and did not have much legroom, however, given these aircraft operate short flights the seats get the job done. The cup of juice was a nice touch however I can't give high scores for entertainment/wifi as there was no inflight entertainment available, not even through their app.
Thanks for reading and hope to see you again on my next flight report!