That new Premium Cabin that Hawaiian Airlines has been promising has finally gone on sale, offering lie-flat seats and high-end amenities for travel starting in early December on the airline’s routes to Asia/Pacific destinations.
Called simply the Premium Cabin, the new service is being installed in Hawaiian’s Airbus A330s, and will initially be available on flights from Honolulu to Tokyo Narita, Brisbane and Auckland starting December 5, and to Sydney as of December 13. (See press release here)
The Premium Cabin has 18 lie-flat leather seats that are 20.5 inches wide and 76 inches long, in a 2-2-2 layout. Front-cabin travelers get new amenity kits, cotton quilts and lounging pillows, as well as two USB ports and one A/C outlet. The new in-flight entertainment system – with more than 100 hours of movie and TV programming – is available via 13-inch tablets that sit on a telescoping arm. The Premium Cabin also offers new in-flight dining options with regional dishes from Hawaiian chefs.
The new service will become available on more routes as the airline continues to refit its fleet of 23 A330s, with the work continuing into next year. Besides the new Premium Cabin, the planes will also get 28 more Extra Comfort seats – the carrier’s premium economy option. The refit will trim total capacity on the widebodies from 294 seats to 278, including 18 in Premium Cabin, 68 in Extra Comfort and 192 in the main cabin (which will still provide 31-inch pitch, the airline notes).
We found Premium Cabin roundtrip fares priced as low as $4,059 from HNL to Tokyo in February, and $3,749 to Sydney in March.
From SFO or LAX, you can fly Hawaiian business class via HNL to Tokyo in mid-December for about $4,700 round trip. Business class from SFO or LAX roundtrip to Sydney is in the $7,500 range.
Hawaiian is not part of any of the big three global airline alliances, but it maintains partnership agreements with seven airlines (including JetBlue and Virgin America, but no longer with American), which allow members of frequent flyer programs to earn and burn miles on Hawaiian flights.
It’s increasingly unlikely that we’ll see Hawaiian’s lie-flat seats on the West Coast over the long term because the carrier will soon begin to deploy its newest 190-seat Airbus A321 on these shorter routes where a lie-flat seat is likely superfluous.
Would you consider flying Hawaiian Airlines across the Pacific with a stopover in Honolulu? Why or why not? Please leave your comments below.
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