Fly Lie Flat To Hawaii: Here Are Your Options & How To Book Them
If you’re looking for comfort and want to fly lie flat to Hawaii, you’re in the right spot. In this article, we’ll look at the various lie-flat seat/bed options on flights to Hawaii. This includes what airlines have lie-flat seats to Hawaii, which routes those are on, and things to watch out for to make sure you wind up on the right plane. We’ll also cover how to book these flights for the best points redemption on each of them.
Quick Introduction To Lie-Flat Seats & Terminology
It can be confusing that many domestic airlines within the U.S. will say “first class” when this product is totally not a first class product according to anything outside the U.S. In order to keep this clear, “domestic first class” refers to these types of seats, which have more space, more padding, etc. on flights within the U.S. These do NOT lie completely flat as a bed. “International first class” refers to the cream of the crop on long flights crossing borders. Think pampering and champagne.
For our purposes, we are looking for something in between: international business class. This is the type of product we can find with lie-flat seats operating to Hawaii from other parts of North America. If you want to fly “lie flat” to Hawaii, meaning your seat lays down completely horizontal as a bed, this is what we are hunting for in this article.
Airlines That Fly Lie Flat To Hawaii
From other parts of North America, there are 5 airlines with lie-flat options to the islands of Hawaii. Here, we’ll look at these airlines, the options available, and how to book them.
Nothing says flying to Hawaii like flying on Hawaiian Airlines. Their “Premium Cabin” offers 180º lie-flat seats to and from several destinations in Hawaii. This is the exact same cabin they offer on long-distance international flights.
When booking, you can look for the “Lie-Flat Seat” and bed indicator in your search results. The details will also tell you this is lie flat.
Hawaiian’s Premium Cabin is on their A330 plane with 2-2-2 layout. That should include the following routes:
- Boston BOS to/from Honolulu HNL
- Las Vegas LAS to/from Honolulu HNL
- Los Angeles LAX to/from Honolulu HNL
- Los Angeles to/from Kahului OGG on Maui
- New York JFK to/from Honolulu HNL
- Phoenix PHX to/from Honolulu HNL
- San Diego SAN to/from Honolulu HNL
- San Francisco SFO to/from Honolulu HNL
- San Francisco SFO to/from Kahului OGG
- Seattle SEA to/from Honolulu HNL
- Seattle SEA to/from Kahului OGG
During normal operations (outside the pandemic), most of these routes operate daily.
How To Book
You can book flights on Hawaiian Airlines in a couple of ways.
Hawaiian’s own program moved to dynamic pricing, so this may be a good or horrible option, depending on popularity & price of the dates you want to fly. The points range is 40,000 to 130,000 miles per person for one-way.
There is also the Hawaiian Airlines World Elite Mastercard from Barclays. It currently has an elevated welcome offer of 70,000 miles after you spend $2,000 within the first 90 days. The annual fee is $99.
The best option is booking via Virgin Atlantic Flying Club. As this table shows, you’ll pay 40,000 miles from the West Coast or 65,000 miles from the East Coast. You can transfer miles from American Express Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, and Citi ThankYou Points. All of these transfer at 1:1 ratios, so you should be able to add up points in your Flying Club account pretty easily.
You can’t book these flights online, so call Virgin Atlantic at (800) 862-8621.
There are several options to fly lie flat to Hawaii with American Airlines.
First, there are flights on Boeing 777-200 planes, which AA will show as “772” in your aircraft type. American Airlines has 2 types of this plane, and both have lie-flat seats.
The routes for this are the following:
- Dallas/Fort Worth DFW – Honolulu HNL
- Dallas/Fort Worth DFW – Kona KOA (on the big island, Hawaii)
- Dallas/Fort Worth DFW – Kahului OGG (on Maui)
American Airlines also has Boeing 787-8 planes available on this route:
- Chicago ORD – Honolulu HNL (read our American Airlines 787-8 review here)
In normal times, these routes all operate daily. Some even have more than one flight per day during busy periods. All will have lie-flat seats.
There are rare occasions with lie-flat seats out of LAX, such as busy periods or when AA is repositioning an aircraft. However, this isn’t standard. Also, PHX has this rare lie-flat seat, but both of these routes more commonly have 757 aircraft with recliner seats.
How To Book
You can book these flights in multiple ways.
With multiple cards that have welcome offers, you may have a lot of miles in your American Airlines account. However, AA has 2 things that make this a poor redemption. 1: they charge a 7,500 mile extra “fee” for lie-flat seats. 2: they charge more on the direct routes than if you have connecting flights, due to married segment logic. The problem is, you don’t know which flights are the ‘deal’ right now for the connections. The plus side is that you can find web specials, but that’s rare for lie-flat seats to a popular spot. 81,500 miles seems standard for your best bet with AA itself.
Cheaper options include 61,000 miles one way with Asia Miles or 60k miles with British Airways. However, the real winner is Etihad Guest: 47,500 miles! You’ll need to call to book: (877) 690-0767. Etihad Guest is a transfer partner of American Express Membership Rewards, Citi ThankYou Points, and Capital One. All transfers are at 1:1 ratios.
The caveat here is that American Airlines has been stingy with sharing award space to their partners lately.
Delta Air Lines
Delta operates lie-flat seats in its Delta One product. The newer version of this is “Delta One Suites” (read our review here), which are on any aircraft with A330-neo or any Boeing 767 aircraft that have been retrofitted already. Delta operates its Delta One lie-flat product on these routes:
- Atlanta ATL – Honolulu HNL
- Minneapolis-St. Paul MSP – Honolulu HNL
- Salt Lake City SLC – Honolulu HNL
Additionally, Delta has seasonal flights with lie-flat seats on this route:
- Salt Lake City SLC – Kahului OGG (on Maui)
For the seasonal flight SLC-OGG, look for flights on the Boeing 767-300 airplane.
Surprisingly, Delta does usually doesn’t offer lie-flat seats to OGG or HNL on their flights out of New York JFK, Portland PDX, San Francisco SFO, or Seattle SEA airports. I won’t say never, but it’s not common.
The nice thing about Delta award searches is that lie-flat seats are clearly labeled.
How To Book
If you fly on an unpopular date during low season, Delta’s dynamic pricing may work in your favor. Otherwise, expect to pay more when booking directly with Delta.
Check Delta rates against this chart from their partner Virgin Atlantic Flying Club. For domestic flights within the U.S., Virgin Atlantic will charge based on distance. Here are some samples:
- MSP-HNL is 3,966 miles, which costs 80,000 miles with Virgin Atlantic
- SLC-HNL is 2,991 miles, which costs 52,500 miles with Virgin Atlantic
Because Delta’s pricing changes constantly, search with them while comparing to the Virgin Atlantic chart. If you want to book with Virgin Atlantic, call (800) 862-8621 or book online. Virgin Atlantic is a transfer partner for American Express Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, and Citi ThankYou Points. All of these transfer at 1:1 ratios.
Another domestic carrier with lie-flat options, United has offerings on multiple routes.
The following routes are on Boeing wide-body planes of various types. All have lie-flat seats:
- Chicago ORD – Honolulu HNL
- Chicago ORD – Kona KOA
- Denver DEN – Honolulu HNL
- Houston IAH – Honolulu HNL
- Newark EWR – Honolulu HNL
- Newark EWR – Kahului OGG
- Washington, D.C. IAD – Honolulu HNL
Additionally, you may get lie-flat seats if you fly on a Boeing 767-300 aircraft with 2-1-2 seat configuration.
From Los Angeles LAX or San Francisco SFO airports, most flights to Hawaii have recliner seats in business class. However, if you find Boeing 777-200 aircraft on one of these flights, it will be lie flat.
How To Book
United is stingy with its lie-flat seats on routes to Hawaii. That’s just being blunt. They do not list many of these seats at ‘saver’ award levels. Saver awards are not only the cheapest, they’re also the only type that partner award programs can book.
If you can find it, saver awards booked with United will cost 45,000 miles. If you can’t find it and have to pay the ‘every day’ price, it will cost double–90k miles.
There are 2 other options, but remember that they only work if saver awards are available. Search on United to find dates with saver awards and then book via these partners, if that’s your plan:
- 15,000 miles on Turkish Airlines Miles & Smiles (likely need to call, see more info here). Turkish Airlines is a transfer partner of Citi ThankYou points (1:1 transfer) and Capital One (2:1.5 transfer). Note: these awards may show up for 12,500 when booking online with Turkish, but their award chart officially says 15,000 miles.
- 27,500 miles each way with Asiana Miles, which is a 3:1 transfer partner of Marriott. You’ll also get 5,000 extra miles in your account if you transfer 60,000 Marriott points to get 20,000 miles, so a total of 25k from the transfer.
- 34,500 miles with Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer is another option. What makes this a good option is that they are a transfer partner of American Express Membership Rewards, Chase Ultimate Rewards, and Citi ThankYou Points at 1:1, plus Capital One at 2:1.
At the end of 2019, Air Canada announced lie-flat service to Hawaii from Toronto, flying on 787 Dreamliner aircraft. With the pandemic, those flights aren’t operating. When they resume, you should have 2 options with Air Canada:
- Toronto YYZ – Honolulu HNL on Boeing 787 Dreamliner with the new Executive Pod seats
- Flights from elsewhere in Canada, plus some Toronto flights, on Boeing 777 air craft, some of which have the old seats and some with the new seats. If you find flights on 777 aircraft, they will be lie flat. Other planes will not.
Air Canada offers a true international business class with lie-flat seats. They call this product Signature Class.
How To Book
Air Canada’s Aeroplan program underwent some changes, which we reviewed here. Unfortunately, you will pay more points for their own flights than you pay to book flights on their partners. That doesn’t make much sense. Instead, book Air Canada flights via their partners for a better deal.
The same prices we quoted for booking United flights above apply here, because of Canada the the US48 being in the same regions for these programs:
- 15,000 miles on Turkish Airlines Miles & Smiles.
- 27,500 miles each way with Asiana Miles
- 34,500 miles with Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer
Depending on where you’re flying from, Hawaii can be “not that far” or “really far”. If it’s really far and involves an overnight flight, here are options for lie-flat seats so you can get good sleep while crossing the ocean. There are multiple options, so we looked at what they are, which planes to watch out for, and also how to book.
If you book one of these, let us know!