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By Plane

Most major U.S. and many international carriers fly to Honolulu International Airport.

United Airlines (tel. 800/225-5825; www.ual.com) offers the most frequent service from the U.S. mainland. American Airlines (tel. 800/433-7300; www.americanair.com) offers flights from Dallas, Chicago, San Francisco, San Jose, Los Angeles, and St. Louis to Honolulu. Continental Airlines (tel. 800/231-0856; www.continental.com) offers the only daily nonstop from the New York area (Newark) to Honolulu. Delta Air Lines (tel. 800/221-1212; www.delta.com) flies nonstop from the West Coast and one-stop itineraries from Houston and Cincinnati. Hawaiian Airlines (tel. 800/367-5320; www.hawaiianair.com) offers nonstop flights to Honolulu from several West Coast cities (including new service from San Diego). Alaska Airlines (tel. 800/252-7522; www.alaskaair.com) has direct flights to Honolulu from Seattle and Anchorage.

Airlines serving Hawaii from places other than the U.S. mainland include Air Canada (tel. 800/776-3000; www.aircanada.ca); Air New Zealand (tel. 0800/737-000 in Auckland, 643/379-5200 in Christchurch, 800/926-7255 in the U.S.; www.airnewzealand.com); Qantas (tel. 008/177-767 in Australia, 800/227-4500 in the U.S.; www.qantas.com.au); Japan Air Lines (tel. 03/5489-1111 in Tokyo, 800/525-3663 in the U.S.; www.japanair.com); All Nippon Airways (ANA; tel. 03/5489-1212 in Tokyo, 800/235-9262 in the U.S.; www.fly-ana.com); China Airlines (tel. 02/715-1212 in Taipei, 800/227-5118 in the U.S.; www.china-airlines.com); Air Pacific (tel. 800/227-4446; www.airpacific.com), serving Fiji, Australia, New Zealand, and the South Pacific; Korean Air (tel. 02/656-2000 in Seoul, 800/223-1155 on the U.S. East Coast, 800/421-8200 on the U.S. West Coast, 800/438-5000 from Hawaii; www.koreanair.com); and Philippine Airlines (tel. 631/816-6691 in Manila, 800/435-9725 in the U.S.; www.philippineair.com).

Operated by the European Travel Network, www.discount-tickets.com is a great online source for regular and discounted airfares to destinations around the world. Compare rates and book accommodations, car rentals, and tours.

If you're traveling in the United States beyond Hawaii, some large American airlines -- such as American, Delta, and United -- offer travelers on transatlantic or transpacific flights special discount tickets under the name Visit USA, allowing travel between U.S. destinations at reduced rates. These tickets must be purchased before you leave your foreign point of departure. This system is the best, easiest, and fastest way to see the United States at low cost. You should obtain information well in advance from your travel agent or the airline office, as the conditions attached to these discount tickets can change without advance notice.

Locally, Hawaiian Airlines (tel. 800/367-5320; www.hawaiianair.com) flies nonstop to Sydney, Australia; Tahiti; American Samoa; and Seoul, Korea.

Agricultural Screening

At Honolulu International Airport, baggage and passengers bound for the mainland must be screened by agricultural officials. Officials will confiscate local produce, such as fresh avocados, bananas, and mangoes, in the name of fruit-fly control. Pineapples, coconuts, and papayas inspected and certified for export, boxed flowers, leis without seeds, and processed foods (macadamia nuts, coffee, jams, dried fruit, and the like) will pass.

Arrival at Honolulu International Airport

Honolulu International Airport sits on the south shore of Oahu, west of downtown Honolulu and Waikiki, near Pearl Harbor.

While the airport is large and constantly expanding, the layout is quite simple and easy to navigate. You can walk or take the Wiki-Wiki Bus, a free airport shuttle, from your arrival gate to the main terminal and baggage claim, which is on the ground level. After collecting your bags, exit to the palm-lined street, where uniformed attendants flag down taxis, Waikiki shuttles, and rental car vans; they can also direct you to TheBus.

Getting To & From the Airport

By Rental Car -- All major rental companies have cars available at Honolulu International Airport. Rental agency vans pick you up at the middle curbside outside baggage claim and take you to their off-site lot.

By Taxi -- Oahu's major cab companies offer island-wide, 24-hour radio-dispatched service, with multilingual drivers, air-conditioned cars, limos, vans, and vehicles equipped with wheelchair lifts. Fares are standard for all taxi firms; from the airport, expect to pay about $35 to $45 (plus tip) to Waikiki, about $25 to $35 to downtown, about $60 to $75 to Kailua, about $60 to $70 to Hawaii Kai, and about $90 to $125 to the North Shore.

For a flat fee of $30, Star Taxi (tel. 800/671-2999 or 808/942-STAR [942-7827]) will take up to four passengers from the airport to Waikiki (with no extra charges for baggage); however, you must book in advance. After you have arrived and picked up your luggage, call Star for directions on where to meet the car.

By Airport Shuttle -- Shuttle vans operate 24 hours a day, every day of the year, between the airport and all 350 hotels and condos in Waikiki. The cheapest shuttle service is SpeediShuttle (tel. 877/242-5777; www.speedishuttle.com), with 24-hour service in air-conditioned vans for just $12.95 from the airport to Waikiki. You can board with two pieces of luggage and a carry-on at no extra charge; surfboards and bicycles are prohibited for safety reasons. Tips are welcome.

By Bus -- TheBus (tel. 808/848-4500; www.thebus.org) is by far the cheapest way to get to Waikiki -- a one-way fare is $2.50 (exact change only) -- but you've got to be traveling light to use it. You can board TheBus with a carry-on or small suitcase as long as it fits under the seat and doesn't disrupt other passengers. TheBus nos. 19 and 20 (Waikiki Beach and Hotels) run from the airport to downtown Honolulu and Waikiki (travel time: 1 hr.). The first bus from Waikiki to the airport is at 4:55am on weekdays and 5:10am on weekends; the last bus departs the airport for Waikiki at 1:22am on weekdays, 1:24am on weekends. Two bus stops are on the main terminal's upper level; a third is on the second level of the interisland terminal.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.