Even though more and more transpacific flights are going directly to the neighbor islands these days, chances are still good that you’ll touch down on Oahu first and Honolulu will be your gateway to the Hawaiian Islands. Honolulu International Airport sits on the South Shore of Oahu, west of downtown Honolulu and Waikiki near Pearl Harbor. Many major American and international carriers fly to Honolulu from the Mainland; for a list of airlines, see “Planning Your Trip to Hawaii.”
Landing at Honolulu International Airport
You can walk or take the free airport shuttle from your arrival gate to the main terminal and baggage claim on the ground level. Unless you’re connecting to an inter-island flight immediately, you’ll exit to the palm-lined street where uniformed attendants can either flag down a taxi or direct you to TheBus (www.thebus.org; see “By Bus,” below). For Waikiki shuttles and rental-car vans, cross the street to the median and wait at the designated stop.
Passengers connecting to neighbor-island flights take the free shuttle or walk to the large inter-island terminal serving Hawaiian Airlines or to the more distant commuter terminal, which serves smaller carriers such as Island Air and Mokulele Airlines. (For details on inter-island flights, see “Getting Around Hawaii”).
Getting to & from the Airport
By Rental Car—All major car-rental companies have vehicles available at the airport. Rental-agency vans will pick you up curbside at the center island outside baggage claim and take you to their off-site lots. It’s about a 20-minute drive from the airport to downtown Honolulu.
By Taxi—Taxis are abundant at the airport, and an attendant will be happy to flag one down for you. The fare is about $25 from Honolulu International to downtown Honolulu and around $35 to $40 to Waikiki. If you need to call a taxi, see “Getting Around” for a list of cab companies.
By Airport Shuttle—SpeediShuttle (www.speedishuttle.com; 877/242-5777) offers transportation in air-conditioned vans from the airport to Waikiki hotels; a trip from the airport to Waikiki is $15 per person. You’ll find the shuttle at street level outside baggage claim on the median. You can board with two pieces of luggage and a carry-on at no extra charge. Tips are welcome. For advance purchase of group tickets, call the number above or book online.
By Bus—TheBus (www.thebus.org; 808/848-5555) is a good option if you aren’t carrying a lot of luggage. TheBus nos. 19 and 20 (Waikiki Beach and hotels) run from the airport to downtown Honolulu and Waikiki. The first bus from Waikiki to the airport leaves at 4:46am Monday through Friday and 5:27am Saturday and Sunday; the last bus departs the airport for Waikiki at 1:22am Monday through Friday, 1:24am Saturday and Sunday; buses arrive approximately every 15 minutes. There are two bus stops on the main terminal’s upper level; a third is on the second level of the inter-island terminal. Note: 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; otherwise, you’ll have to take a shuttle or taxi. The travel time to Waikiki is approximately 1 hour. The one-way fare is $2.50 and $1.25 for children 6 to 17; exact change only. For more on TheBus, see “Getting Around”.
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.