Hawaiian Airlines’ A330s equipped with lie-flat seats in a new business class cabin will be flying to their first official mainland destination starting in February. And it’s not on the West Coast.
The airline tells TravelSkills that its first mainland route to see the new seats on sale will be New York JFK-Honolulu. Hawaiian this week starts selling the new “premium” seats on its flights HA50 and HA51 for travel February 18-May 25; sales for later flights are TBD. A quick scan of JFK-HNL fares on HawaiianAir.com shows the lowest price for first class round trips to be about $1,600 on the low end to $4,000 on the high end.
In early October, Hawaiian started selling the seats on routes from Honolulu to Asia/Pacific destinations for travel beginning in December. And as a suprise and delight feature, Hawaiian ran them between LAX and Hawaii a few times this summer.
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.
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).
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.
Have you flown Hawaiian Airlines before? Would you pay more to lie-flat on your next trip to the islands?
In the market for a new credit card? See our “Credit Card Deals” tab to shop around! It helps us help you!