The Hawaiian Holiday Dilemma: Is It Better to Cruise or Fly?

Hawaii is known for its geographical features like the snow-capped peak of Mauna Kea, craggy ocean cliffs, lava deserts, and so on.

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If you want to visit Hawaii to admire its features, you could fly or cruise to the place. However, you probably have a question lingering in your mind.

Is It Better to Take a Cruise to Hawaii or Fly? (Seven Considerations)

Truthfully, none of the options is inherently better than the other. That means it is upon you to decide what’s important to you.

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The below factors will aid you in making your final decision:

1. Comfort

Depending on where you are, your trip to Hawaii could be very long, and that means you need to be as comfortable as possible.

Unless you are traveling first-class, airplane seats tend to be quite uncomfortable since they lack lumbar support.

According to Getaway Answers, the discomfort can be attributed to some airlines cramming as many seats as possible. As a result, there’s very little room to stretch your legs.

On the other hand, cruise ships offer beds in your room.

Unlike airplane seats, beds do not restrict your movements since they allow you to lie down.

Additionally, beds allow you to sleep in any position without inconveniencing other passengers, like in airplane seats.

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2. Time Needed to Reach Hawaii

Flying is the best choice if you want to reach the state in the shortest time possible.

Generally, flying is the fastest mode of travel. You will usually reach Hawaii from anywhere within a day.

People who want to reach quickly are usually not too keen on the airplane’s comfort or amenities.

At roughly 24 mph, cruising is significantly slower than flying.

Furthermore, it is slow since cruise ships tend to stop at every tourism hot spot in Hawaii.

It may take up to a week to reach Hawaii.

Despite taking a long time to reach your destination, you enjoy the comfort of the cruise ships and the spectacular views of Hawaii’s geographical features.

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3. Entertainment Options

The common form of entertainment on flights is personalized televisions (PTVs).

They usually show direct broadcast satellite television, which allows you to view live TV broadcasts.

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However, not all airplanes have PTVs. However, some airlines do not install PTVs because they claim that they make a plane very heavy.

Some people may want entertainment that engages the whole body rather than one that makes them lie still for hours.

However, if you are indifferent to entertainment or do not mind relying on PTVs as major entertainment sources, you can instead fly.

If you want to partake in various forms of entertainment, we highly recommend cruising.

You will have a chance to choose from watching Broadway shows, live musical performances, or magic shows.

If watching for entertainment gets tedious for you, you can participate in game shows, ropes courses, cooking classes, casino tournaments, etc.

4. Cost of Travel

Flying is generally less expensive than cruising.

According to Value Penguin, round-trip flights to Hawaii from the continental U.S. can be more than $2,000.

On the other hand, cruising will cost you from $1,000 onwards.

Cruise ships are expensive because of the many amenities available,

  • pools
  • restaurants
  • entertainment spaces
  • etc.

If these amenities mean a lot to you, spending a bit more money on them may not be a bad idea.

However, if you are not keen on these amenities or need a way of cutting costs, flying would be your best bet here.

5. Dining

If you are the kind of person who likes to sample different dishes or drinks, cruising is the way to go.

Cruise ships have specialty restaurants that serve dishes from other regions that you may likely not have tasted.

Some of the specialty restaurants to expect are Italian trattorias, French bistros, and Japanese sushi restaurants.

On the other hand, some people do not mind eating the meals they usually eat at home.

Typically, they may lack an acquired taste for dishes like sushi or oysters.

Lucky for them, airlines serve regular foods like chicken, beef, fish, salads, and bread.

6. Privacy

When you fly, you may have to put up with the irritating habits of the people around you.

For instance, you may sit next to a person who snores, a wailing baby, or a talkative person.

Even if you wanted to move away from them, you wouldn’t be able to.

In order to avoid such people, you may have to fly first-class.

Since reaching Hawaii as fast as possible may be your plan, putting up with such people seems like a small price to pay.

On the other hand, cruising offers some of the best privacy ever.

If you encounter a person you do not want to talk to in the pool, you could head to one of the restaurants or your room.

Cruise ships do not confine you to one place like airplane seats do.

Incidentally, cruise ships cater both to people who like interacting with others and those who want some time to themselves.

7. Safety

If you are acrophobic, you may decide not to fly since airplane accidents have occurred before.

Generally, flying is considered safer.

According to The Week, the odds of an airplane crashing is 1 in 1.2 million. So, you can be certain of reaching Hawaii safely.

Cruising is safe, but not as compared to air.

The odds of a cruise ship sinking is 1 in 375,000, which means you do not need to be anxious when you cruise to Hawaii.

Although cruise ships rarely sink, there are other avenues of accidents happening like room hazard injuries or slip and fall incidences.


After reading the aspects of flying and cruising, have you figured out the better one for you?

It is easier to determine which is better by examining your interests.

In general, flying to Hawaii is better if your main concern is arriving fast.

As a result some amenities will be inaccessible.

On the other hand, cruising is a better option if you want something more from your trip besides traveling to the place.