United Airlines is betting big on Hawaii. With international travel still largely on hold for many (a new requirement that all international arrivals procure a negative COVID-19 test prior to entering the U.S. hasn’t made it any easier), the carrier is instead focusing on the idyllic domestic island escape of the Hawaiian Islands.
Starting on May 6, United will start flying between Orange County’s John Wayne International Airport in Southern California and Honolulu in Oahu—a rebirth of a service United discontinued in 2012 and the only nonstop flight between Orange County and Hawaii.
Beginning on June 3, the carrier will also begin flying first-ever routes between Chicago O’Hare International Airport and Kona on the Big Island, and between Newark International Airport in New Jersey and Kahului, Maui.
The Orange County flights will take place daily and the O’Hare and Newark flights will fly each day Thursday through Sunday.
The new Hawaii flights are available to be booked on united.com beginning February 13. They bring to 21 the number of routes United now offers between Hawaii and the U.S. mainland.
“We know customers are dreaming of summer getaways,” said Patrick Quayle, United’s vice president of International Network and Alliances. Quayle noted that with so many international travel restrictions still in place Hawaii offers one of the easier vacation options for U.S. travelers for 2021.
Travelers to Hawaii must currently present a negative COVID-19 test result prior to boarding their flight in order to bypass an otherwise mandatory 10-day quarantine. United gives passengers easy access to testing options and information, which is available both through the United website and app.