Having just reviewed the United First Class Polaris lie-flat seat to Hawaii, I decided to investigate what other airlines offer lie-flat or flatbed seats to Hawaii.
Many domestic first-class flights between the United States and Hawaii have first-class cabins with angled seats rather than fully flatbeds. Airlines do not always make it clear if they are offering a lie-flat seat on their flight. In fact, it is quite easy to find which Delta and Hawaiian flights offer lie-flat seats but extremely difficult to be sure on United and AA.
I have already outlined the best airlines to fly to Hawaii in First Class.
Review: Delta Airlines First Class To Hawaii
Delta flies to Hawaii from Atlanta, Minneapolis, New York-JFK, Portland, Salt Lake, San Francisco, and Seattle. Delta First Class lie-flat seats to Hawaii are consistently flown from ATL (Atlanta), Minneapolis and Salt Lake City to HNL (Honolulu) using its Airbus A330-300 with international Business Class configuration.
Unfortunately, they fly their old Boeing 737-900ERs, 767s, and 757s from the West Coast. These aircraft are tired and tatty and do not offer lie-flat seats. Occasionally, Delta may fly their Delta One lie-flat product between LAX and HNL but this cannot be relied on.
Delta consistently flies lie-flat seats from ATL (Atlanta), Minneapolis and Salt Lake City, and New York Kennedy (JFK) to HNL (Honolulu) using its Airbus A330-300 with international Business Class configuration. Salt Lake City (SLC) to Maui (OGG) on their Boeing 767-300 also offers a flatbed. So it is a good choice if these are your nearest airports. Otherwise, I would advise avoiding Delta.
Will your Delta flight have a lie-flat or flatbed seat?
Delta makes it clear when their flights have lie-flat seats in search results; look for the bed amenity icon in the search results. This ease of selecting a lie-flat service is why Delta comes at the top of my list of the best airlines with lie-flat seats.
How many Delta miles do I need to fly to Hawaii in First?
Reward flights prices range from 67,500 to 150,000 miles one way. At the more expensive end, it may be worth saving your miles for a more valuable flight and opening your wallet, and paying for the flights outright.
Review: United Airlines First Class To Hawaii
In my opinion, United is also one of the best airlines to travel Hawaii in First Class when travelling from the East Coast; New York, or Washington, in its BusinessFirst with fully lie-flat seats. On other routes, the First Class seating is more patchy, and it is hard to tell which flight offers which seat.
Will your United Airlines flight have a lie-flat or flatbed seat?
Chicago O’Hare (ORD), Denver (DEN), Houston (IAD), San Francisco (SFO), Los Angeles (LAX) to Honolulu (HNL) all fly the 777 with flatbed seats, and you can read my review of the domestic First Class flight from San Francisco to Honolulu in Polaris First on B777. It is worth noting that only some flights have lie-flat seats on their Boeing 777-200, and it is hard to tell which is which. You need to study seat maps on seatguru.com.
Also, check out the seat maps for flights from Los Angeles (LAX), San Francisco (SFO), and Denver (DEN) to Kauai Lihue (LIH) as some seats on these flights offer lie-flats but again, it is hard to tell which offers which seat.
How many United miles do I need to fly to Hawaii in First?
Using United miles, theoretically, a First Saver award is 40,000 miles (50,000 miles for flights between Hawaii and Chicago O’Hare, Denver, Houston, New York/Newark, or Washington), but this award is more-or-less impossible to find. A First Everyday award is 90,000 miles for a one-way flight or 95,000 miles for the longer flights mentioned above.
Review: Hawaiian Airlines First Class To Hawaii
Hawaiian Airlines offers flights to the islands on their Boeing 767 (which is being phased out) or their next-gen A321 or A330 planes. Hawaiian Airlines offers lie-flat seats into Honolulu from New York (JFK), San Francisco (SFO) (note United Airlines also offer a lie-flat on this route which I have reviewed), San Diego (SAN) as well as San Francisco (SFO), and Seattle (SEA) to Maui (OGG).
The best airline to fly to Hawaii in First Class from the West Coast; Los Angeles LAX, San Fransisco or even Las Vegas, San Jose, Sacramento, and Seattle would have to be Hawaiian Airlines on their retrofitted its A330s with first-class seats incorporating fully lie-flat seating and direct aisle access. Again remember to avoid their Boeing 767s.
Hawaiian has retrofitted its A330s, so First-Class now incorporates fully lie-flat seating and direct aisle access on both the A330 and A321, much like other airline’s long-haul Business Class, making it a good choice for decent First Class lie-flat and cabin when flying to Hawaii.
Will your Hawaiian Airlines flight have a lie-flat or flatbed seat?
Hawaiian Airlines makes it very clear when their flights have lie-flat seats in search results, making it one of the best lie-flat choices when flying to Hawaii.
How many Hawaiian miles do I need to fly to Hawaii in First?
For a First Class Flex award, you need 80,000 miles for a one-way flight as their cheaper saver awards are more or less impossible to find.
Review: American Airlines First Class To Hawaii
American Airlines flies to Hawaii from Dallas-Ft. Worth, Los Angeles, and Phoenix. All planes offer seats that are similar to Domestic First except for the flights from Dallas. This means no amenity kits, no lie-flat seats, and a very average experience.
A recent update to AA’s fleet was the retirement of the last 767-300ER which flew the last remaining old angle-flat Business Class (the product was retired to Roswell on October 30th, 2017), which means all flights from Dallas-Ft. Worth (DFW) to Honolulu (HNL) and Maui (OGG) on the 767 fleet are 100% lie-flat! (Thanks to our reader Matthew for his input on this update).
On flights from Los Angeles, AA usually operates Airbus A321s with domestic First Class seats with large-screen seat-back entertainment. However, American’s latest schedule update also puts international long-haul widebody aircraft on two Hawaii routes from LAX, giving customers lie-flat cabin seats with direct aisle access. 1 of 6 daily flights operated by the AA can be booked with this excellent First offering on their 777-200ER; AA143 LAX1500 – 1900HNL 772 D & AA144 HNL2330 – 0706+1LAX 772.
The other AA flights with an upgrade are those from Phoenix to Honolulu with 1 of 2 daily flights operated by A330-300l: AA692 PHX1205 – 1555HNL 333 D & AA693 HNL2215 – 0709+1PHX 333 D. The remaining aircraft currently operating on this route are Boeing 757-200 aircraft with a terrible First Class cabin with televisions on the ceiling, so flying AA on this route is a risk that I wouldn’t reccomend.
Will your American Airlines flight has a lie-flat or flatbed seat?
To tell if your AA flight has lie flat, lookout for a 1-2-1 seat configuration on the SeatGuru map or pick one of the flights mentioned above. There isn’t another easy way, so if you want to be 100% sure, book with Delta or Hawaiian, where it is easier to plan and tell from their search facilities.
How many miles do I need to fly to Hawaii in First?
Use 67,500 (AAnytime Level 1) or 90,000 (Anytime Level 2) miles. You can usually find award flights costing 67,500 miles.
Unfortunately, the lie-flat picture is mixed and ever-changing as new planes are introduced on each route, so check the aircraft type carefully before booking. I hope this article helps to point you towards better choices but always double-check the aircraft before booking.
Below you will find my reviews of recent experiences I have had on United Airlines, American Airlines, and Delta.
I have flown with American Airlines a number of times and have reviewed their long-haul Business Class and First Class flights. My trip reports can be found below. Read More.
I have flown with United Airlines a number of times and have reviewed their long-haul Business Class and First Class flights. My trip reports can be found below. Read More.
I have reviewed Delta One which is Delta’s new long-haul Business Class product which can be found below. Read More.
Note: Posts may be sponsored by the proprietor or brand being appraised. All opinions remain our own & are in no way influenced.