Makani Kai Air Adds Nonstop Flights From Honolulu to Princeville
As discussed in our Kauai episode of Miles Away, travelers visiting Hawaii's Garden Isle typically choose to book their accommodations either on the north or south sections of the island. Personally, I prefer Princeville in the north, since it's near the breathtaking Nā Pali Coast State Wilderness Park, offering impressive views from the former St. Regis Princeville. It's also home to The Westin Princeville Ocean Resort Villas, a Bonvoy member favorite.
The challenge is, most visitors arrive at Lihue International Airport (LIH), and getting up to Princeville can be a bit of a pain. You'll need a rental car — which I'd recommend getting either way — and unpredictable traffic can make the 45-minute trek take far longer than predicted.
According to a report in Hawai'i Magazine, however, there's a compelling new option for getting to and from Kauai's northern coast. As of May 1, Makani Kai Air will be offering twice daily round-trip service between Daniel K. Inouye International Airport in Honolulu (HNL) and Princeville Airport (HPV), with the following schedule:
While you may be able to match the schedule up with a mainland US departure or arrival, the flights seem ideal for intra-island flyers — that is, passengers making their way between Kauai and Oahu, exclusively. It could be a reasonable option for travelers visiting the Honolulu area as part of a larger Hawaii trip as well, but as of now, there don't appear to be any cars available for rent at HPV — unless they're visiting a local or planning to utilize taxis or ridesharing, tourists might be out of luck.
There's a huge advantage when it comes to travel time, though, not to mention that passengers don't have to deal with the hassle of TSA screening. You also don't have to worry about pricing fluctuations — fares are $125 each way, every day of the year.
While it's clearly not for everyone, if you can make HPV work for you, it could make for a very interesting start to your next trip to Hawaii.