Getting from California to Hawaii is relatively straightforward. In fact, most travelers who go from any US city to Hawaii will pass through California, as it offers one of the cheapest and most-convenient gateways to the island state. Travelers looking for cheap flights to Hawaii from California can choose from several airports, both for arrival and departure. The cheapest flights tend to originate and end at the largest airports, which are LAX in California and Honolulu on the island of Oahu in Hawaii. Other cheap flights from California to Hawaii arrive and depart from the gateways of San Fransisco and from Kona on the Big Island and Kahului on Maui.
Most direct cheap flights to Hawaii from California leave from LAX and SFO. If you are starting from another location in California, it is often much cheaper to connect in one of these cities and then take a direct flight from there. Depending on which island you plan on visiting in Hawaii, it may be cheaper to fly direct or to connect to a smaller island (like Lanai or Molokai) from a larger one. Hawaiian Airlines usually offers the best prices on inter-island flights.
Best airline choices
Direct flights to Hawaii from California are offered by:
- Hawaiian Airlines
- United Airlines
- Alaska Airlines
- Delta Airlines
- American Airlines
- Continental Airlines
- US Airways
The ticket prices for flights to Hawaii from California vary according to the season, with the highest prices being charged during peak travel times like over the holidays and during summer vacation and spring break. Off-peak times include the week pre-and pot-holiday, and the end and beginning of the school season. In high season, ticket prices can range from $500 to $700 per person. Off-peak prices can be as low as $250-$400 per person.
Money saving tips
The cost of your flight will vary based on your ultimate destination. Flights to larger islands like Oahu and the Big Island of Hawaii tend to be cheaper and require fewer connections, while flights to smaller airports on smaller islands require more connections and tend to cost more.
Check websites like Expedia, Travelocity or Priceline and compare the cost of those tickets to prices available on the websites of individual carriers – sometimes the prices are a bit lower when you book directly with the airlines. For flying from island to island, Hawaiian Airlines tends to offer the best prices.