FAA Approved: Southwest Flights To Hawaii Starting Soon

by Bill Shuman

It may be March, but it feels like winter is barely winding down. At PMTTP, we’re still looking for that winter escape, like going to Cancun or yep, Hawaii.

While we’ve been dealing with the cold, Southwest has been dealing with a host of other things like the ongoing labor dispute issues with their mechanics and planning for its upcoming Hawaii launch. Well, there’s good news on the latter: Southwest’s Chief Operating Officer, Mike Van de Ven, announced that the FAA has approved Southwest flights to Hawaii from the West Coast.

The Southwest Hawaii plan was revealed back in October 2017 with CEO Gary Kelly’s announcement. While Southwest initially had a target date around the end of 2018, the government shutdown slowed things down. Then just last month, a Southwest flight finally landed on Hawaii. as part of a test.

At this point, no flights, schedules, or prices have been released, but Southwest said more information will be forthcoming soon.

What Southwest Flights To Hawaii Mean

In the past, whenever Southwest has entered a market prices have been driven down by an average of over $45. This effect was dubbed the “Southwest Effect” by University of Virginia researchers. Therefore, it would make sense, that in the coming year we will see some incredible deals to fly to the 50th state.

Southwest has already announced that their service will include direct flights from four California cities including:

  • Sacramento
  • Oakland
  • San Diego
  • San Jose

In Hawaii, the plan is to have flights to and from

  • Honolulu (O’ahu)
  • Kahului (Maui)
  • Kona (Big Island)
  • Lihue (Kauai)

Southwest has also stated that Hawaii inter-island service will also be available.

Southwest Plane-Hawaii

How to Book Southwest Flights To Hawaii (When Available)

Obviously, you could just pay the Wanna Get Away Fare or sometimes spend more for an upgraded fare. Personally, I find Southwest one of the best overall airlines, especially when it comes to the simplicity of their loyalty program. Previously I wrote an article that details the fastest way to gain Companion Pass status that will enable you to fly to Hawaii for free using Rapid Rewards Points. If you already have Companion Pass status, or are just looking to top off your Rapid Rewards account either of these Southwest cards will get you one step closer to the Aloha state.

Hawaii beach

Hawaii will soon be a Southwest flight away

The other way to get to Hawaii is to use Ultimate Rewards from Chase as they are a transfer partner to Southwest Airlines. As flights, haven’t been announced yet we don’t know exactly how many points it will take to travel. However, there are several Chase cards that would give you a large point balance to transfer over including:

Related Post: What Exactly Is a Southwest Wanna Get Away Fare? 

The Upshot

As someone who holds Companion Pass status till December of 2020 I couldn’t be more thrilled to see additional Southwest routes. Unfortunately for me, I’ve already booked flights this year to Hawaii through another carrier. As I noted in past articles, however, Hawaii is my favorite destination so I wouldn’t put a trip in 2020 using Southwest past my family. Aloha!

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