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Joined: Sun Dec 15, 2013 11:52 pm

HNL Connection Time

Thu Jan 23, 2014 3:13 am

I have a friend that is connecting through HNL later this year and they wanted to know if the land from SYD (on HA) at 1100 (Hawaii Time) if they could catch a connecting flight to SEA (also on HA) that departs at 1325. Is that pushing it? Also would they have to clear C&I in HNL or would that be handled in SEA?
There is no such thing as a stupid question, just stupid people asking questions.
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Joined: Thu Sep 14, 2000 1:18 am

RE: HNL Connection Time

Thu Jan 23, 2014 3:48 am

Second question first, yes, all passengers arriving in the United States must clear Customs and Immigration at their point of entry even if they are continuing on another flight. That leads to the first question, is two hours and twenty five minutes sufficient to de-plane, clear Customs and Immigration, re-enter through the TSA checkpoint (required for all passengers arriving on international flights), and connect to the next flight? The answer depends in part on how many other international flights arrive around the same time. Although flight schedules may be different when your friend travels, an examination of arriving international flights in HNL for January 23 shows the following:

KE 53 (ICN) arrive 1000
JL 792 (KIX) arrive 1015
JL 80 (HND) arrive 1125
NH 1062 (HND) arrive 1240

Apparently the Hawaiian flight from Sydney does not operate on January 23, but assuming it did there would not seem to be too much danger of long lines in Customs and Immigration.

Still, if it were me, I'm not sure I would be comfortable with two and a half hours to make the connection. If there were no lines in Customs and Immigration and if the TSA checkpoint were moving smoothly I would say there should be no problem, but those are two big assumptions. I passed through HNL last month and the TSA checkpoints in the Overseas Terminal were no picnic. But, if Hawaiian issues the ticket then it would be considered a legal connection and I guess the claim is that the connection should be doable. So it's really your friend's call and what he or she is most comfortable with.

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