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Honolulu Airport
5 out of 10  5 out of 10
42 reviews

 



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HONOLULU AIRPORT customer review :  20 November 2014 by Peter Hartikka    (USA)

Rating : 3/10

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Recommended

I transited HNL twice on my way from San Francisco to Auckland recently, and wished I hadn't. On my outbound trip, after I got off my flight from SF I searched for information about where my connecting gate was. There was simply none to be had, the first screens I found were blank, then there were some "arrivals" screens (not very helpful in the departures area). I walked halfway down the terminal to baggage claim, in the heat since there was no continuous air-conditioned walkway, and the first "departures" screen I found only had about one hour's worth of flights on it; mine was still two hours away. Just then I heard a loudspeaker announcement saying it would depart from the gate right next to the one from which I had just disembarked. The return trip was not much better, there was a similar lack of information, compounded by the need to go through customs and immigration. It became clear that HNL was never meant as an international transit point - the path of travel was chaotic (up stairs, down stairs, through various inside and outside corridors, to end up close to where I had started in the first place), and the personnel surly. Not much aloha here. It's also worth mentioning that the terminal has birds flying around it, to such an extent that some of the seats in the departure lounge had bird poop on them.



HONOLULU AIRPORT customer review :  18 September 2014 by Brian E Smith    (Japan)

Rating : 7/10

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Recommended

It is an old and open-air airport, and I imagine it is not like any other you have flown through. It could be larger, especially the airport lounges (and they could be closer to the gates). That said, it is easy to navigate, there are enough shops around the gates, though there could be more food options. The gate areas are small and far from the main terminal where security is located. It could do with a massive renovation, but I am nostalgic and have been using HNL since the 1970's and it kind of takes me back.



HONOLULU AIRPORT customer review :  11 June 2014 by Dan David    (USA)

Rating : 1/10

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Recommended

Stuck for 10 hours. Came from Osaka. Leaving customs found almost no none checked on facilities. One coffee and one bar joint total for one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. So I had to check in. Place is dark and dirty. Worst prices in the United States. Chaotic check in. Noisy. Avoid HNL.



HONOLULU AIRPORT customer review :  25 July 2013 by Michel Perrin    (Brazil)

Rating : 1/10

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Recommended

One of the ugliest airports existing on US territory. Arrival on the International "terminal" compels you to take horrible buses, where you have to literally climb stairs. Checking-in for inter-island flights is rude. No wi-fi, no store, nothing. Departure for US domestic flights in confused. Only attractive: nice furniture. Boarding lounges are too small, queues for security don't fit in the allocated space.



HONOLULU AIRPORT customer review :  22 March 2013 by John Smithers    (USA)

Rating : 3/10

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Recommended

Although the design of the airport may have worked in the 70s when it was built, today's security requirements make many of the airport's spaces either cramped or abandoned. The first floor gates have ugly dividers corralling the gates, creating narrow bottlenecks in the passageways. Meanwhile, the entire second floor is completely abandoned, with old ceiling tiles laying about. In general, it isn't a very welcoming design.



HONOLULU AIRPORT customer review :  28 October 2012 by Mike Villanueva    (USA)

Rating : 7/10

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Recommended

Aesthetically, Honolulu Airport is a throwback to the 70s. For a place that is supposed to welcome people to a tropical paradise, it is heavy and dark concrete architecture. There needs to be more wood, greenery and updates to the fixtures. If you are taking Hawaiian Airlines to a connecting neighbor island flight, be prepared to walk if you are in the far terminal where some mainland and international flights are parked. Its even a farther walk (or ride on the Wiki-wiki shuttle) if you're on Alaska Airlines. Our flight from Seattle parked at the far terminal and we had less than an hour to our connecting flight to Hilo. It was a mad dash with several co-passengers in tow scrambling for directions. Fortunately we made it in time. The airport is trying to make improvements and there are better dining options along with more shopping for people waiting at the gates for their flight. You may want to eat before coming to the airport as prices are steep. Its really nice to hear announcements in Hawaiian too, which reminds you this is Hawaii after all.



HONOLULU AIRPORT customer review :  13 September 2012 by Benjamin Pittman    (New Zealand)

Rating : 2/10

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Recommended

Although they are trying to improve the airport, at least in a cosmetic sense, it has to be once of the worst designs ever with marathon hikes to go anywhere and dark, dingy areas which are truly hideous. Having come and gone through Honolulu some 12 times since early 2011, I can at least say that the immigration, security and customs people are generally pleasant and polite, this not always being the case in the US, who generally have some of the rudest and surliest officials on earth! Officiousness and coldness are general characteristics elsewhere in my experience over 50 years plus of travel. Since I spend a lot of time in Hawaii, where I own a home, there is at least a bit of a positive here.



Honolulu Airport customer review :  16 July 2011 by J Danan   (USA )

Customer Rating :  2/5

2 Star Rating   

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I was amazed that a city so known for its tourism has such an outdated airport. Someone wrote that the decor was 1980's, I would say it looks like vintage 1960's or 70's. The bathrooms looked as old, in disrepair and with filthy floors. There is no free wifi nor could I find a place to charge up my electronics. You have to get around on a clunky bus shuttle between terminals, and there are no good restaurants out by the gates. I ate literally the worst sandwich of my life at the Quiznos subs; it was total (overpriced) lump of mush. It's not even possible to buy a bag of normal packaged pretzels at the newstand, just a tiny zip-lock bag of them for $5. Positives: you can buy leis upon arrival and even the security staff had that friendly aloha spirit.


Honolulu Airport customer review :  15 May 2011 by J Rose   (USA )

Customer Rating :  1/5

1 Star Rating   

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Whoever designed this airport must not have been thinking too clearly or had very little background in airport design. This is without a doubt one of the world's most confusing, illogical places to depart, arrive or change planes. There is no sensible flow from one part of the airport to the other. Gates are scattered about in a way that makes it difficult to get from one to the other. Transport between terminals via Wiki-Wiki shuttle is inefficient. Arriving internationally involved the longest walk imaginable from the gate to customs. No signage at all after clearing customs for onward journeys on domestic flights. They should tear it down and start over.


Honolulu Airport customer review :  13 October 2010 by Cathy Hartigan   (Australia)

Customer Rating :  1/5

1 Star Rating   

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Found the checkin and agriculture check in process at Honolulu airport totally chaotic and staffing unable to cope with demand. Long winding lines of hundreds of confused and stressed people queuing to check baggage at kiosks, as commanded by 2 yelling roving staff. Directions are not apparent outside the airport building (where lines begin) and its not until you reach the beginning of the queue and get close to a human to find out you need to be on another line. People were treated like cattle. We were in a line for an hour and a half, lost our visa card in the confusion and were charged baggage fees when not required.


Honolulu Airport customer review :  7 September 2010 by E Mabley   (USA)

Customer Rating :  2/5

2 Star Rating   

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Inter-island terminal (also used by Hawaiian Airlines flights to the U.S. mainland). The terminal looks like a 1980s time warp. Dark corridors, dirty carpeting, cluttered floor space between jetway and hallway, dirty restrooms, limited concessions and the worst food of any airport in the USA. If you're stuck with a long layover bring a good book or a laptop and your own food.


Honolulu Airport customer review :  2 September 2010 by Steve Conroy   (Australia)

Customer Rating :  3/5

3 Star Rating   

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This is an unusual airport, to say the least. International arrivals are relatively straight forward, although the immigration hall can be very crowded when 2 or more flights arrive. Waiting times in excess of an hour are not unusual in the passport control hall. Queues can be horrendous and disorganised at International check-in. If you are flying Star Class on Jet Star, beware that you do have a priority check-in, but there are no signs directing you to it. This can easily save you an hour. Security staff are typically surly and disinterested TSA employees. They try to cram as many people as possible through one small x-ray machine/metal detector, so allow a minimum of 30 minutes to clear security. Airside is average - whilst it is hardly to the standard of Changi or Hong Kong, there are some shops selling overpriced souvenirs, books and food. The open air walkways are very pleasant, and provide a nice tropical feel to the terminal. International departure lounges are very plain, with old and uncomfortable seats. A full A330/B747 will result in standing room only. They apply a quarantine method here: once you are in your departure lounge, you cannot go back to the shops. Overall it is probably one of the better US airports, but it still has a lot of work to do.


Honolulu Airport customer review :  27 August 2010 by Nick Janides   (Australia)

Customer Rating :  3/5

3 Star Rating   

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This airport desperately needs a major overhaul. It amazes me how such a busy airport can be left to deteriorate and not receive any funds to remodel into a modern airport in the pacific. The airport is gloomy and screaming out for a make over. Staff are always pleasant at all times which is the island way of doing things. I also noticed that checking in can be shambles with staff trying to keep people in straight lines.


Honolulu Airport customer review :  24 August 2010 by Neill Bell   (USA)

Customer Rating :  3/5

3 Star Rating   

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Whilst this may not be the most modern airport, I like the design. It is open (welcome in those islands) & airy. The bars/diners may not be the best nor cheapest but it is O'ahu; it has to be expected. The plant shops are a delight for those who like growing things. Produce, not so much. My gripe is the staff, at check in & security. They appear to hate their jobs yet feel secure in them. Try security, upon leaving. Go First Class on United, United do not care & security will ignore "Priority" passengers just because scanty clad young(ish) girlies are going through. Whooppee! One month later, premier economy... "You are not flying First sir, I know! use THAT line" YEP, He knew exactly which class I was flying each time & yet, failed to give any priority. Males be warned. So I shall not be flying first through THAT airport again. All the islands have airports, they all inter-connect. Really, the directly employed staff let down HNL & leave a very nasty taste with their attitude. This Xmas we shall be trying Kaui'i. Let the recession resolve the issues management fail to address.


Honolulu Airport customer review :  12 May 2010 by Phillip Kershaw   (New Zealand)

Customer Rating :  1/5

1 Star Rating   

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First time back in Hawaii after 15 years. Nothing has changed in all that time - still a dark and dingy airport with little natural lighting. I am sure that prisoners see more light! Immigration on arrival took 50 minutes. On departure after clearing security there are limited facilities. If the state government of Hawaii had any money they should bulldoze this airport and build a new one.


Honolulu Airport customer review :  20 April 2010 by N Werner   (Switzerland)

Customer Rating :  3/5

3 Star Rating   

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Arrived and departed during lunch time on Delta. Once you deplane you have to walk a long way to the Delta baggage claim and signage is not very good. The airport is old but everything works. I found it quite interesting to leave the gate area and walk outdoors to the main terminal where baggage claim and the arrival hall is. Baggage was delivered within a few minutes after the first pax made the long hike. Once outside I found the official airport shuttle to Waikiki and was on my way. Departure was just as swift with your bags being scanned by the agriculture department before heading to check-in. The departure lobby is really very old and baggages are stacked behind the check-in counter before being transported to the plane. Security was quite quick and if you are leaving on an international flight you have a nice choice of duty free goods but if you leave on a domestic flight like I did, there really is not much. I had some Japanese food before heading to the gate area and I was glad that the plane left almost on time as it's pretty boring being stuck in that airport for long. As I was on vacation I did not mind HNL but I guess if you are travelling on business through HNL on a regular basis it would not be such a good experience.


HONOLULU AIRPORT customer review : 26 February 2010 by David Russell

Customer Rating : 3/5

3 Star Rating

Been five years since we last used this airport and it's still exactly the same. A throw back to the 60's although they appear to be doing some upgrade work at the moment. Be aware if you are on an early morning flight, we had a 7am departure and all checked baggage has to be screened by the agriculture department before you can go to check in and nothing opens before 5am so no point in arriving mega early. Not a lot in the way of eateries and everything very basic. Staff friendly enough though. Never a problem with immigration as most international travelers from Europe have already cleared immigration prior to departing for Honolulu. No hassles.


HONOLULU AIRPORT customer review : 12 February 2009 : by D Rettie

Customer Rating : 2/5

2 Star Rating

I was first at Honolulu Airport in 1981 and thought it was an airport out of the 1960's. Nothing has changed much. I was there in December 2008 (in transit) and again in January 2009 on way back to Sydney. The decor has not changed, the food choices are very limited and so are the shops. Pity if you are catching an Hawaiian Airlines flight. After we checked in, got our boarding passes and went through security you have to walk for miles to the gate (no shuttle bus was made available. They make an announcement to passengers to enter the gate lounge but once there you cannot leave (pity if you have to go to the toilet). Only one small shop available to buy souvenirs, and only place to purchase drinks near the gate was Starbucks and they were a rip-off. Honolulu is in desperate need of a makeover as it looks old and tired.


HONOLULU AIRPORT review : 24 June 2008 : by M Saunders

Customer Rating : 2/5

2 Star Rating

In the 1980s, Honolulu Airport was appalling, and I was sorry to discover that it still is. Poor design has put courtesy phones half a mile (it seems) from baggage collection, so ring your hotel or shuttle -- Reliable shuttle bus is great -- before collecting bags, or you'll have to drag them back a long way to the phones.


HONOLULU AIRPORT review : 24 May 2008 : by W Van den Haas

Customer Rating : 3/5

3 Star Rating

I have been travelling thru the Honolulu airport for over 15 years, and many of the comments here are very true. Poor decor, very poor signage, uneven staff regarding knowledge and "aloha spirit". But many are just fine, helpful. Fortunately, its not a large airport, which makes it easier to have patience. The food choices and shopping you see at other international airports just does not exist. Most taxis are honest and the rates are approx $3.00 per mile to the Waikiki area 12 miles away. But some are not. I had one airport taxi charge me $49 to Waikiki. Thats not even close, even in bad traffic. I have found its easiest to make arrangements with one of the flat rate "car service" companies. Its less than full meter rates and most dont charge for regular baggage. They will have someone waiting for you. Its nice to know you'll be on your way when your ready. Security checkpoints can often be long, and curbside for departures can also get congested. Because of Hawaii's location and the time differences to Asia and US Mainland many flight arrive and depart within the same time "window" to accommodate with the mainland schedules. Its unavoidable. Overall, its not the best airport, but not the worst either.


Honolulu Airport by David Gallant

10 January 2008   Customer Rating : 3 Star Rating

Checking in at HNL airport is like waiting in line at a busy subway station. Very dark, poorly lit and totally colorless. One commentator likened it to a cement parkade. Once past the security area it does get better. The open area is very nice. Though small in size there is a lovely garden area in a V shape where one can walk and watch the planes dock and depart. On my last arrival I found it a long walk from our gate to the baggage pick up. Some of the staff could perhaps do well by treating people to the Aloha Spirit that permeates throughout the islands. Improvements are being made at this airport.

Honolulu Airport by Peter Harrison

12 November 2007   Customer Rating : 4 Star Rating

This is a busy but relatively small airport. Some improvements currently being made in the departure area - but catering and shopping is limited. The best thing about the airport are the wonderfully manicured lush gardens with water features and ponds with koi carp. Not a bad place to wait for a delayed flight!

Honolulu Airport by D Walker

18 October 2007   Customer Rating : 3 Star Rating

I have flown in and out of Honolulu a few times and it reminds me of arriving in a car park in a 80's shopping centre. Its true it has a laid back Hawaiian feel about it. But I do think the state gov could spend money on a refurb. It is an international gateway from Asia, South Pcific. Restaurants, cafes,duty free, internet etc! The check in area at the inter island terminal is a mess with 2 security check points, both for mainland and international flights. So if your on a Hawaiian flight you must stay in the queue which ends outside the door of the terminal at peak times with no signage. Make it a true aloha welcome!

Honolulu Airport by Hakan Ersoy

21 August 2007   Customer Rating : 2 Star Rating

Waiting 2 hours to get your passport to be stamped by the US Immigration is unacceptable. Our flight is arrived at the same time with 3 Asian Jumbos. The immigration was crowded and they couldn't cope with the high number of pax. Thanks to a ground staff who directed us "Australian passengers arrived with Hawaiian Airlines" to the US citizen entry point, then we were out in 10 minutes. We almost missed our connection flight to Kahului. On the way back to Sydney, all was OK. We were warned by a friendly domestic terminal staff if wanted to eat something before we caught the shuttle bus to international terminal, we should eat at domestic terminal as the international terminal has very limited to offer to eat or to shop anything. Very basic international terminal. The airport looks tired like Kahului Airport.

Honolulu Airport by Samantha Healey

28 August 2006   Customer Rating : n/a

I may have an answer to Pam Frank's query. I would have to give the Supreme Order of the Jobsworths Award to the staff who operate the USDA machine at Honolulu airport for American Airlines. This is a joint award given also to the person who refused to let us put our hold bags through the other USDA machine being used not more than 30 feet away as we were not travelling with "her" airline!. When we arrived at this airport for our flight back to LAX there was a sign near this machine informing pax that this machine operated at 5.30 am and 10am. There was nothing else there indicating where pax should line up to get their hold luggage x-rayed so of course when said staff arrived at 10am (and not a minute beforehand) to start work there were three lines of pax and total chaos. So what do said staff do - they started to shout at the pax because of the disorderly lines!. Very helpful not. Please do us all a favour and operate a proper queueeing system by having some poles set out and a sign saying "line starts here". That is not hard to do now is it?! Anyhow once hold bags had a sticker placed on them we made our way with our hold luggage over to the American airlines check in desk. Fortunately the woman we saw had some common sense and readily assisted us. After receiving our boarding passes we stood in line for the security checkpoint to open (they werent quite ready for us yet!). Once through there you are airside. I like Honolulu airport overall (its far better than practically all the other US airports I have visited) as its open to the elements and it has plenty of shops and restaurants catering to passengers needs. One last point - we flew at a time when the no liquids on planes rule had been introduced a few days prior. Two pax boarded our AA flight with drinks from the food court and no-one said anything at the gate! Makes a mockery of the whole exercise!

Honolulu Airport by Pam Frank

1 June 2006

I can't understand why Honolulu airport security would not let our clients in the airport 4 hours earlier than their flight. When they arrived they were told they could not go in until 2 hours before, this is strange because all the airlines tell you , you must check in 3 hours prior to return to the mainland. They wanted to get a bite to eat first and be at the airport. Then when they asked about a rental car they were told to go stand in the middle of the highway and flag down one of the car rental companies. How rude and inconsiderate! I have never had anyone be turned away from an airport because they showed up earlier for their flight home, I have been selling tickets for 30 years. This has put a x in the box for places I do not want to send my clients. Now we have to call all the people we have going on a group cruise and let them know just how inconvenient the Honolulu airport will be when they go to return home.

Honolulu Airport by Stephen Knight

26 March 2006

I'm originally from Hawaii, live in Japan, and fly the Narita-Honolulu route at least once a month, usually on JAL. My comments about Honolulu's airport: except for the international departure terminal, which has undergone a lot of renovation and has plenty of shops (though not much in the way of restaurant choices), the airport is definitely showing its age. While it's nice to have the open-air lobbies and terminals, and the greenery that should characterize Hawaii's gateway, stepping inside presents a gloomy, poorly lit, run-down, plain-old dusty interior. Much of the airport looks as though people seldom use it. With the state budget in surplus and tourism up, the local government really needs to look at making improvements beyond the duty-free shops catering to the Japanese visitor. Domestic (Hawaii-Mainland) terminals and gates are certainly far behind the clean, bright mall-like atmosphere of many newer airports elsewhere. There were a lot of comments about immigration and customs. I have never had a problem (though Immigration booths are often understaffed) - usually getting from arrival gate through immigration and customs in no more than 10-15 minutes. It pains me to see people talking about rude staff in Honolulu especially - the very place the Aloha spirit is most needed.

Honolulu Airport by Christian Rocha

16 November 2005

The first problem, as already explained by previous poster, is the lack of adequate signals around the airport, which prompts for common mistakes. Following our arrival, the entire group of passengers got lost in its way to the baggage claim areas. Perhaps we made the mistake of not taking the "Wik-Wiki" transports, but those vehicles were so slow. Security can be an issue, especially with all the laws that protect the ecological environment of the island, which is quite understandable. Still, the achille's point of the airport is that is so far away from the city. The transport system from/and to the airport is frankly pathetic, and don't be surprised if you wait 15 minutes for an overpriced cab.

Honolulu Airport by M Hackner

12 November 2005

After living in Honolulu for the better part of two years and making about a dozen trips to/from the mainland US, I've conluded that HNL is one of the most antiquated "major" airports in the US. Check-in lines are often lengthy as most domestic flight departures are bunched n the early morning, mid afternoon or late evening and are jumbo jets full with tourists. Security generally moves well but once inside, you'll find nothing but a couple of sundries shops, an archaic bookstore, two dirty fast food restaurants and a dilapidated bar. Gate areas are straight out of the early 70s and are in bad need of a makeover/refurbishment. Like to chew gum on an airplane? Bring it ahead of time as it's not sold in the airport because it "makes a mess". Amazingly, cigarettes are available wherever you turn presumably because they don't make a mess! When arriving domestically, avoid the wiki-wiki ("express" in Hawaiian) buses and opt for the three minute walk to baggage claim. Be patient if you choose to take a taxi - a wait upwards of 20-30 minutes is not uncommon. In short, HNL has a long way to go to catch up to other mainland and Asian airports.







 

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