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American Airlines brings back a Hawaii route & will use a widebody aircraft


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One of the better ways to use airline currencies when flying domestically is on a premium cabin booking on one of the routes on which a widebody aircraft is being used, and where the seats on offer are genuinely premium seats and not the colossal disappointments that most domestic narrowbody aircraft offer.

The number of domestic routes on which US airlines offer widebody aircraft is, unsurprisingly, low (these aircraft are usually better employed on long-haul routes), but starting this winter, American Airlines will offer one more such route, and it’s a route to Hawaii.

Dallas/Ft. Worth to Kona is back

For the first time since January 2022, American Airlines plans to offer a daily service between Dallas/Ft. Worth and Kona, and it will do so with a widebody aircraft.

This route will re-launch on 27 October 2024 and will offer an 12:00 departure from DFW and a 17:30 departure from Kona for a few days before settling down to the following schedule from 2 November:

AA229 DFW 11:00 – 15:35 KOA (Daily)
AA230 KOA 18:30 – 06:00+1 day DFW (Daily)

This service will be seasonal and so while we can’t see out that far yet, it’s safe to assume that this service will end on or around 27 March 2025.

The aircraft

American Airlines will operate this route using a Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner configured with 20 Business Class seats, 28 Premium Economy seats and 186 Economy Class seats, and based on the current seat map (which shows some rear facing seats), the Business Class cabin will offer the airline’s ‘Concept D’ seats.

a diagram of a business class

The good news hare is that these are true lie-flas seats and as you can see from the seat map, all seats in the cabin offer direct access to one of the aircraft’s aisles.

The bad news is that these are the worst wide-body Business Class seats that American Airlines offers.

a room with seats and a couple people standing in the background
American Airlines 787-8 Business Class – Concept D seats.

The seats can have a coffin-like feel to them when in lie-flat mode and unless something has changed in recent years, these seats are fitted so poorly that if you’re in one of the center seats, you can feel your seat move when the person in the seat next to you moves.

Still, compared to the Premium Economy and Economy Class seats, these are still a decent place to spend a flight, and they’re also better seats than most of the narrowbody First/Business Class seats that American Airlines offers.

 Bottom line

American Airlines will bring back its Dallas/Ft. Worth – Kona route for the 2024/25 winter season and will operate it using its 787-8 aircraft. Premium Economy awards on this route will start at 40,000 miles and Business Class awards will start at 60,000 miles (for one-way travel) and if you can find award space at these levels, this could be a great way to get to Hawaii in a bit more comfort than normal.

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2 COMMENTS

  1. Great to see this flight back. Coming from the east coast, getting to KOA had come to pretty much require. This opens up a lot of one stop itineraries with most time spent on a widebody…which is an upgrade over a narrowbody in any class!

  2. They need to bring back the ORD-HNL non-stop on the 788. I’ve done that three times, it’s the best. No West Coast fiasco to put up with. Last ride I looked out the window when we went feet wet, told my wife, “Look, Astoria, we’ll make better time”.

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