Assessment: Hawaiian Airways A321neo First Class

To get from Oahu to the Large Island, we managed to fly Hawaiian Airways’ A321neo first-class. This can be a aircraft that Hawaiian Airways additionally flies between Hawaii and the mainland, so I used to be trying ahead to experiencing it on a shorter flight.

I’ve reviewed Hawaiian Airways’ Airbus A330 first-class and Boeing 717 first-class, with the latter typically being what’s provided between islands. Nonetheless, choose frequencies are operated by the A321neo, and I particularly sought out a kind of flights.

How I booked our Hawaiian Airways first-class tickets

I booked first-class tickets on the next Hawaiian Airways flight for $143 per particular person:

03/07 HA370 Honolulu to Kona departing 1:30PM arriving 2:20PM

For reference:

  • This was round $50 costlier than financial system; it’s debatable whether or not the premium is price it for such a brief flight, however I needed to evaluate the A321neo first-class seats, so it appeared price it
  • There aren’t many good award choices for these sorts of flights; for instance, HawaiianMiles prices a minimal of 15,000 miles one-way for inter-island first-class flights, so it wasn’t price transferring factors to guide that approach, even when there have been availability

Hawaiian Airways first-class boarding

Whereas inter-island flights don’t supply lounge entry, we used Precedence Go to go to the Hawaiian Airways Plumeria Lounge throughout our time on the airport. The lounge is kind of lackluster, so we determined to go into the terminal, the place there was nice aircraft recognizing of all of the planes in Hawaiian Airways’ fleet.

Hawaiian Airways Boeing 717 Honolulu Airport
Hawaiian Airways Airbus A330 Honolulu Airport

We ultimately headed to gate A17, the place our Hawaiian Airways A321neo was parked. I positive do love Hawaiian’s livery!

Hawaiian Airways Airbus A321neo Honolulu Airport

Boarding was scheduled for 12:55PM (35 minutes earlier than departure), however ended up beginning round 10 minutes after that. These needing additional time had been invited to board first, adopted by first-class passengers.

Hawaiian Airways departure gate Honolulu Airport

Hawaiian Airways A321neo first-class cabin & seats

Hawaiian Airways’ Airbus A321neos have a complete of 16 first-class seats, unfold throughout 4 rows in a 2-2 configuration. If the cabin appears acquainted, that’s for good purpose — Hawaiian has the identical forms of first-class seats that American has on its A321neos, however with completely different finishes.

Hawaiian Airways A321neo first-class

Throughout boarding I additionally briefly glanced into the financial system cabin, and particularly the Further Consolation part within the entrance, that includes additional legroom.

Hawaiian Airways A321neo Further Consolation

Legroom is fairly respectable for first-class, and I like a few of the cabin finishes, just like the patterns on the seats and rear bulkhead.

Hawaiian Airways A321neo first-class

Sadly there are not any private televisions, and in contrast to on American, there’s no holder for a private gadget on the seatback. Hawaiian does have footrests in first-class, which is a pleasant function.

Hawaiian Airways first-class seat A321neo
Hawaiian Airways first-class seat footrest A321neo

Between the literature pockets on the seats in entrance had been two USB retailers.

Hawaiian Airways first-class seat USB retailers A321neo

Throughout from that, between our seats, was an uncovered storage compartment.

Hawaiian Airways first-class seat storage A321neo

Armrests may very well be lifted to disclose one other storage compartment, in addition to an AC energy and USB outlet.

Hawaiian Airways first-class seat storage A321neo
Hawaiian Airways first-class seat energy retailers A321neo

The tray desk prolonged from the far armrest, and may very well be folded in half.

Hawaiian Airways first-class tray desk A321neo

The tray desk had a function whereby you might place your private gadget holder onto the tray whereas additionally having one thing on it, which is a helpful function.

Hawaiian Airways first-class tray desk A321neo

There was additionally a small tray space on the middle console.

Hawaiian Airways first-class middle tray A321neo

Every seat had a person studying mild and air nozzle.

Hawaiian Airways A321neo overhead console

As you’d count on from the most recent technology A321neos, there was temper lighting, and overhead bins had been giant.

Hawaiian Airways A321neo temper lighting

There was a toilet on the entrance of first-class, which was fairly fundamental and no-frills.

Hawaiian Airways A321neo first-class toilet

So yeah, I’d say that Hawaiian gives a fairly normal home first-class laborious product on its A321neos. Minus the dearth of non-public televisions it’s maybe marginally extra snug than what you’d discover on another airways, however the distinction isn’t enormous.

Hawaiian Airways departure from Honolulu

The flight was packed, with virtually all seats on the aircraft occupied. Boarding completed round 12:25PM, so solely took round 20 minutes. In the course of the finish of the boarding course of, drink orders had been already taken in first-class, given the brief flight time. I like how Hawaiian Airways performs stress-free Hawaiian music throughout boarding (I believe it’s the monitor under?), which I want extra airways would do.

The primary cabin door closed at 1:25PM, at which level the captain made a welcome aboard announcement, informing us of our flight time of 29 minutes. A couple of moments later the crew carried out a guide security demonstration with a pre-recorded announcement.

Hawaiian Airways A321neo first-class cabin

We pushed again at 1:30PM, and 5 minutes after that began our taxi.

Pushing again from gate at Honolulu Airport
Hawaiian Airways Boeing 717 Honolulu Airport
Taxiing Honolulu Airport

We had been departing from the reef runway, which is kind of a protracted taxi from the terminal. So regardless of taxiing actually quick, it took round quarter-hour to get to the runway. On the plus aspect, the views are fairly superior even throughout taxi!

Taxiing Honolulu Airport
Taxiing Honolulu Airport

We had been cleared for takeoff on runway 8R at 1:50PM.

Taking off from Honolulu Airport

We had beautiful views of Honolulu on our climb out!

View after takeoff from Honolulu
View after takeoff from Honolulu
View after takeoff from Honolulu

Hawaiian Airways first-class inflight service

About 5 minutes after takeoff the inflight service started.

Hawaiian Airways A321neo first calss cabin inflight

We had been first provided our selection of three snacks — lemon berry cookies, snack combine, or Biscoffs.

Hawaiian Airways first-class snacks

A couple of moments later we had been introduced the drinks we had ordered. I ordered a Moloka’i Mule, whereas Ford had a Mai Tai. The drinks had been served in plastic cups, and tasted fairly respectable, on condition that I consider these are pre-mixed cocktails.

Hawaiian Airways first-class drinks

Impressively sufficient, we had been provided a drink refill round 10 minutes earlier than touchdown, however we declined. The 2 flight attendants working first-class had been tremendous pleasant.

For context, under is the drink choice from the inflight journal. I consider that is additionally the choice accessible in first-class, although on a complimentary foundation.

Hawaiian Airways drink choice

Hawaiian Airways A321neo inflight leisure

Clearly inflight leisure doesn’t matter on a flight this brief, however remember the fact that Hawaiian additionally flies this aircraft to the mainland, the place one thing like this issues much more. Sadly Hawaiian Airways doesn’t have Wi-Fi on its A321neos (or any plane, for that matter).

The airline does, nevertheless, have a portal with streaming leisure. So you’ll be able to select from dozens of flicks or TV exhibits to stream to your gadget.

Hawaiian Airways A321neo Wi-Fi portal
Hawaiian Airways A321neo streaming leisure

There’s even a flight monitoring function, which I respect.

Hawaiian Airways A321neo map

The one different leisure is the inflight journal, which you don’t see on many US airways anymore. Apparently it’s on the market at newsstands for $3.99? Hah…

Hawaiian Airways inflight journal

It’s a bit disappointing that Hawaiian Airways selected to not set up TVs on these new jets. There’s no Wi-Fi, so on a flight to the mainland your solely possibility is to stream leisure to your gadget.

Hawaiian Airways arrival in Kona

The 163-mile flight from Honolulu to Kona is among the longer inter-island flights, and affords some unbelievable views. Under is a map of our flight, to present you a way of simply how a lot there was to see. I’m glad we chosen seats on the left aspect of the plane, which provided all of the views.

Credit score: Flightradar24

I’ll let OMAAT readers chime in on precisely which islands these are under. I believe that’s Lanai and Kaho’olawe, although I’m positive somebody will appropriate me if I’m fallacious.

View on strategy to Kona
View on strategy to Kona

Finally the Large Island was in sight, and the cabin was ready for touchdown.

View on strategy to Kona
View on strategy to Kona

One of many issues that makes the Large Island distinctive is all of the black rocks, which you gained’t discover to this extent on different islands. It was particularly cool to see from above (I do know lots of people do helicopter excursions to see these things — I’m petrified of helicopters — so I used to be glad to have the prospect to see this from a aircraft).

View on strategy to Kona
View on strategy to Kona
View on strategy to Kona

We touched down on runway 17 at round 2:20PM, with a Hawaiian Airways 717 and United 737 holding in need of the runway.

View on closing strategy to Kona

From there we had a brief taxi to our arrival stand. There have been 5 different planes on the bottom, together with two Southwest 737s, one American A321, one United 737, and one Alaska 737.

Taxiing Kona Airport
Taxiing Kona Airport

Kona Airport doesn’t have any gates, so a ramp was pushed as much as the ahead left door of the aircraft.

Arrival stand Kona Airport

I all the time love getting these sorts of aircraft views!

Hawaiian Airways A321neo Kona Airport

From there we had been directed into the terminal, which is completely open air (and sort of terrible, although I’ll save that for the report of our flight departing Kona).

Kona Airport terminal
Kona Airport terminal

We headed to the arrivals space after which the rental automobile shuttle, and had been at our resort in lower than half-hour.

Backside line

I’m glad I had the prospect to fly Hawaiian Airways’ A321neo first-class on an inter-island flight, as a result of this fashion I gained’t should exit of my strategy to evaluate it on a flight to the mainland.

In the end Hawaiian’s A321neos are superior for inter-island flights, and even supply a aggressive product to & from the mainland, at the least in comparison with different airways flying domestically configured planes. Nonetheless, the planes don’t supply practically pretty much as good of an expertise because the A330s the airline has, which have flat beds in first-class, plus private televisions.

So I’d say Hawaiian’s A321neos are completely superb — they’re not price avoiding (until there’s an possibility for a flat mattress), but in addition not price in search of out.

What do you make of Hawaiian Airways’ A321neos?

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