Cheapest Island Vacation
Step 2: When to Travel for Hawaii Vacation Deals. ▼
These best priced mainland departure dates:
- August 9 through November 15, 2016. Late summer. New: on the most competitive routes (see Step 4), fares may start to drop intermittently as early as July 28, 2016 while less competitive routes will start between August 9 and August 21.
- December 29 through March 6, 2017. Snow bird season. 2016 saw better than than normal pricing for these traditionally expensive dates. We’re hopeful the same will hold true for 2017 and are already starting to see Very good prices for these dates from key west coast cities.
Christmas in Hawaii. This time of year should always be avoided unless you are willing to pay the highest prices (which can sometimes be double or more). If you do travel at the Christmas/New Year holidays, the lowest prices will usually be for flights on December 24, 25, 31 and January 1. Also note that accommodations and cars will be challenging at the holidays, and, as with trans-Pacific and inter-island flights, should be planned far in advance.
Spring Break 2017. Another time of year to avoid when possible due to the unusually high cost (typically 50% or more higher than surrounding dates). It looks like the peak of spring break will be from March 7 through 24. Those dates will narrow down when we get closer, as is the case every year. Stay tuned for more updates.
A spring or fall Hawaii vacation gets our unequivocal thumbs up. First, the very best in Hawaii weather is found during spring and fall. You can also luxuriate in the feeling of having the islands all to yourself. That’s something which is only possible during low season. Plus the best chances to score Hawaii vacation deals.
Step 3: When to Buy Hawaii Vacation Deals. ▼
This largely depends on your flexibility and how determined you are to take a Hawaii vacation. Sometimes the deal that is available now is the best option. That’s true even when it isn’t the rock bottom price, as other Hawaii vacation deals may or may not materialize later. Monitoring for the very best in cheap flights to Hawaii can also be quite time consuming. If you read the comments you’ll hear from people who have missed out by waiting.
- Spring 2016 travel – We expect to see both airfare sales and generally reduced pricing continue for travel until June 9.
- Summer 2016 travel – book as early as possible for travel through August 8. Do not wait, expecting to find deals from mid-June unless you are flying from the five airports that have peak summer deals. Note: There is an outside chance that Los Angeles will also have lower than expected summer airfares, but that has not happened thus far.
- Late summer and fall 2016 Hawaii deals for travel mostly starting August 15 have already started appearing and will until summer. We’ve already published several rounds of late summer through fall 2016 deals.
Tip: At Beat of Hawaii we have our fishing net out to catch Hawaii vacation deals for you. We’ll reel them in and be first to let you know when they appear. Please subscribe to our free mail updates (below) or to our updates. Then stay tuned and act quickly. If you read our comments you’ll see the disappointment of those who are too late to get these time-sensitive deals.
Step 4: Best Cities for Cheap Flights to Hawaii. ▼
Some mainland departure cities continue to have increased competition. Travelers using these airports can expect to benefit most in terms of best pricing and greater availability. Those cities are:
- New York. Intermittent sales on (nonstop), United Airlines (nonstop and one stop), and (one stop).
- Oakland. Best Hawaii deals overall. Running 15+% lower than normal even for peak summer 2016. On and .
- Portland. Intermittent sales including 15+% lower than normal even for peak summer 2016 on and .
- San Diego. Intermittent deals.
- San Jose. Still the best Hawaii deals gateway overall. Running 15+% lower than normal even in summer 2016 on and .
- Seattle. Good deals on multiple carriers. Peak summer 2016 up to 15+% lower than normal on and .
Step 5: Best Airlines to Fly to Hawaii. ▼
The two primary choices for cheap flights to Hawaii from the west coast are and . Both are highly regarded carriers that have a wide range of offerings. Their prices on competitive routes are usually but not always similar. There are other choices as well, now including Virgin America to Maui and Oahu from the Bay Area and starting in May 2016, from Los Angeles too.