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Southwest Airlines has recently announced confirming they will begin flying to Hawaii. In the very near future, you can begin flying Southwest Airlines to Hawaii! While you can’t buy tickets yet, here’s are a few things you need to know about Southwest’s newest destination, Hawaii.

Begin flying to Hawaii on Southwest in 2018.

Tickets Go On Sale in 2018

Southwest intends to begin selling tickets from California to Hawaii in 2018. Details of the exact flight schedules, airports, and ticket prices are still being finalized and will be announced at a later date. As CEO Gary Kelly mentioned in the official press release, “it’s a matter of when, and not if we serve Hawaii.”

Southwest Airlines will begin flying to Hawaii in 2018. Credit: Southwest

It’s official, the next time you hop on a plane to Hawaii, it could very well be a jet operated by Southwest Airlines.

Southwest Will Have A Dedicated Fleet of Jets to Serve Hawaii

In order to begin offering nonstop service from California to Hawaii, Southwest needs to upgrade their airline fleet.

This will be a two-step phase. For the initial flights, Southwest will use their ETOPS-equipped -800 fleet once they receive FAA certification for Extended Operations long-haul flights. Ultimately, Southwest will serve Hawaii entirely with the Boeing 737 MAX.

With the Boeing MAX fleet, Southwest is planning a multi-market offering between multiple U.S. west coast cities and the various Hawaiian Islands.

Southwest doesn’t offer a business or first class seat, so those wanting luxury will still have to book Hawaii flights through United, Alaska, Delta, and American airlines.

How to Book You Award Flight on Southwest Airlines to Hawaii

Once tickets are finally available for purchase in 2018, what better way to fly to the tropical paradise than for free! To help accrue your points balance, you have two different rewards cards options.

Southwest Airlines Cards

Southwest offers two co-branded credit cards (Plus and Premier) through Chase. The Southwest credit cards can be a valuable tool for three reasons:

  • Earn 2 miles per $1 on all Southwest flights and Rapid Rewards travel partner purchases
  • All purchase awards count toward the Southwest Companion Pass
  • The sign-up bonus points also qualify for the Southwest Companion Pass

If you are within reach of acquiring the Southwest Companion Pass, the Hawaii route can be a very valuable route. The Companion Pass lets your travel companion to virtually fly for free. All you have to pay is the applicable taxes and fees. For domestic flights, that only $5.60 each way. Theoretically, you can get the second seat for only $11 when you fly to Hawaii on Southwest.

And, if you earn the Companion Pass in early 2018, it will be valid for the two years as your travel companion can fly for free for the rest of 2018 and all of 2019!

Chase Sapphire Reserve

By owning the Chase Sapphire Reserve, you not only earn up to three points on every travel and dining purchase, but you can also transfer your rewards points to Southwest on a 1:1 basis as they are one of the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel partners. With the Chase Sapphire Reserve, you will receive 50,000 bonus points (a value of at least $625) that can help pay for your Southwest flight to Hawaii when they begin accepting reservations.

Summary on Southwest Flying to Hawaii

If you have been wanting to fly to Hawaii, you will have a brand new option in the upcoming year. While Southwest hasn’t released the specifics about when service to Hawaii will start or which airports will handle the new routes, we do know that tickets will go on sale in 2018 and it’s never too early to begin planning for your next trip.


Johnny Jet Editorial

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on orders over $12 for a minimum of one year on qualifying food purchases with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Earn 5X points on Lyft rides through March 2022. That’s 3X points in addition to the 2X points you already earn on travel.

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