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Old 07-26-2014, 09:09 AM   #1
Anal Annie
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Aulani using Hawaiian & Alaska Air

First, let me say that because we're going to Aulani I thought I might get more responses here on the DVC Resorts Board than on the Transportation Board. If nobody knows then I'll start a thread over there. I am looking for recent experiences from folks who have used Alaska Air and Hawaiian Air to / from Hawaii. We are using Hawaiian Air from LA to HNL and again inter-island to Maui. Then we're using Alaska Air home from Maui.

Our trip is like 10 days away & I am going to start packing soon. Since we're starting at DL for 3 nights I want to be sure to pack everything we need for DL in our carry-ons so we won't even need to open our checked bags. I have measured the carry-ons that we would typically use on say SW, JB, AT or Delta etc. but wondered how strict Hawaiian & Alaska airlines are these days with their stated carry-on dimensions if a couple of the bags are off by 1" on one of the sides?! Hawaiian also has a 25 Lb weight limit for carry-ons which I will be sure to keep to. (We used Hawaiian once many years ago for an inter-island flight and they DID weigh our bags and make us redistribute the weight bcuz one bag was 1 Lb over and 1 bag was like 10 Lbs under - that one was DS's so I had packed it light intentionally but whatever, we had to repack everything right in the line.) I just don't want to get up to the gate and then they make us gate check them - this trip is already costing us a small fortune in checked luggage fees ($275). But because it IS a 2 week trip I want to be able to use the biggest bags I can - within limits of course.

We just "lost" a duffle on the way home from our last trip to WDW in January due to a rip in one end. It was a great size and would've been within all the guidelines and we will miss it for sure. If I buy any more luggage tho my DH will shoot me (plus for what I would pay for another bag we could check it.) ANYWAY, 2 of our bags that I was planning to bring are traditional style suitcases and are within the Alaska Air dimensions all the way around so no problems with those 2 bags on Alaska Air. The 3rd bag I often use (a duffle) is fine on 2 of the dimensions but is 2" too wide if they get super technical over the size and make us put them in those sizing bins. I love this duffle tho. It's sturdy, has a nice easy, no snag zipper and has good inline wheels and nice pockets on the ends for things like shoes. We've used it on other carriers without any problems. When it comes to Hawaiian Airline's stated dimensions tho ALL of these bags are out by 1 inch on at least one dimension. The exterior dimensions are 10" deep with the outside zipper pockets and they say 9" deep on their website. We have 3 smaller "international size" carry-ons that we used to go to Europe a few years ago but they really are a lot smaller and are therefore harder to pack. They are about 3" shorter, 1" less on the width and are only 9" deep. So they're actually way under sized by a lot - but they're the only bags we have that are technically under that 9" depth. I'm thinking that we can probably get by with the 2 suitcases that are only "out" by the 1" but I'm thinking we should probably not bring the duffle (even tho we've used it without issues on other airlines).

I'm not really so concerned with Alaska Air because all the bags are at least 2" shorter and 3" less on their width, but I AM wondering how strict Hawaiian Airline is these days since their dimensions are so much smaller?! Do they measure and weigh? Has anybody had any problems with their carry-ons being "oversized" on Hawaiian?!
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Old 07-26-2014, 09:16 AM   #2
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With airlines in general cracking down on "oversize" carry-on, you probably won't get a very satisfactory answer on this board. I would suggest you look on flyertalk, where there are likely to be more flyers reporting positive and negative experiences. Good luck. -- Suzanne
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Old 07-26-2014, 10:24 AM   #3
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I would suggest sticking as closely to whatever Hawaiian Airlines lists as their carry on and checked bag size so that you don't have any problems. I did two inter-island flights on Hawaiian from OGG to HNL and HNL to Maui and each airport did something different. While my checked bag was always weighed, the agent just looked at but never weighed my carry on. My carry on is regular 22" so it always meets regulation size. Also, the Hawaiian Airlines planes have two different size overhead bins on the plane(one on the left side and one on the right side). They tell you to put your roller bags in one bin and your personal item under your chair. For those people who don't have roller bag carry ons, they're asked to put their carry on in the smaller bin if it won't fit under their seat.

One other thing to keep in mind--not sure if they do this on the Mainland--in Hawaii when Hawaiian Airlines boards, they just call for all people in coach to board. They don't call zones, just first class and people who need extra time. You will see people lining up before they announce boarding so that they can be some of the first on the plane when the coach section is called.
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Old 07-26-2014, 10:57 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SuzanneSLO View Post
With airlines in general cracking down on "oversize" carry-on, you probably won't get a very satisfactory answer on this board. I would suggest you look on flyertalk, where there are likely to be more flyers reporting positive and negative experiences. Good luck. -- Suzanne
Thanks for the suggestion. I'd never visited that site. I just went over and resurrected an old HA thread that had been started in like 2005 - but it appeared that the mods were consolidating all related questions into that one thread so I figured if I started a new one they'd just move it. The thread I found was mainly about the weight issue tho, not dimensions & SIZES. Since I'm already aware of the weight issue that's not a problem for us. I'm just really wondering about that one dimension on the 1 side on that one duffle….

Quote:
Originally Posted by abdgeek View Post
I would suggest sticking as closely to whatever Hawaiian Airlines lists as their carry on and checked bag size so that you don't have any problems. I did two inter-island flights on Hawaiian from OGG to HNL and HNL to Maui and each airport did something different. While my checked bag was always weighed, the agent just looked at but never weighed my carry on. My carry on is regular 22" so it always meets regulation size. Also, the Hawaiian Airlines planes have two different size overhead bins on the plane(one on the left side and one on the right side). They tell you to put your roller bags in one bin and your personal item under your chair. For those people who don't have roller bag carry ons, they're asked to put their carry on in the smaller bin if it won't fit under their seat.

One other thing to keep in mind--not sure if they do this on the Mainland--in Hawaii when Hawaiian Airlines boards, they just call for all people in coach to board. They don't call zones, just first class and people who need extra time. You will see people lining up before they announce boarding so that they can be some of the first on the plane when the coach section is called.
Oh all of our bags are 22" or under including their wheels & handles. It's the other dimensions that concern me. We actually upgraded our HA flight from LAX to HNL to a new booking category called "extra comfort" which is supposed to include 5" of extra legroom & priority boarding so I'm not worried about boarding on that flight - and since it's a plane with 2 aisles they'll probably have extra overhead bin space down the middle too - I'm anticiapating plenty of overhead bin space esp. in the front area where we'll be seated since the rows will be further apart so not as many people trying to cram in. I'm sure the inter-island flight will be a zoo tho. We are booked for row 7 on the inter-island flight. It's a shame we may not be some of the first on if they don't call zones…guess we'll just line up early with the rest of the herd.
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Jan 2014 - 5 n @ AKV Jambo House / Aug 2013 - 9 nights @ SSR / Aug 2012 - 9 n @ Boardwalk Villas and HRH / Mar-Apr 2012 6 n @ Bay Lake / August 2011 Disneyland Paris and DCL MED cruise / August 2010 Disney's DVC resort at Hilton Head Island, SC / March 2010 Kidani Village at AKV / August '09 BCV & Vero Beach / May '09 SSR / July '08 AKV & B2B Cruises on The Wonder/ January '08 VWL / August '07 OKW / July '06 Offsite - Waikiki, Kona & Ka'anapali, Hawaii / July '05 Disneyland & Disney Magic West Coast Cruise to the Mexican Riviera / Summer '04 CSR / May '03 Offsite - St. John, USVI / Summer '02 AKL & O.C., MD


















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Old 07-26-2014, 01:10 PM   #5
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Hi Annie,
We just flew Hawaiian last week. Only checked one bag and a car seat booster. We carried on a standard carry on suitcase, a folding clothes bag (which was a few inches over the suggested guidelines), and a large KYSS bag that we stored under the seat. They weren't checking the dimensions of anyone's luggage, that I witnessed. As long as you can fit it in an overhead bin, you should be fine...And yes...the plane does have bins in the middle as well. We loved the service we had on Hawaiian Air.
Have a great trip!
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Old 07-26-2014, 01:13 PM   #6
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Ive flown both Alaska and HL for inter islands and to west coast.

I have not had any issues with either airline when it comes to baggage size for carryons ( had one bag that was somewhat large ) I also noticed many others on our flights that had bags I thought were to to big for carryon but still made it.

It does depend on who is working the gates thou. You could get someone that woke up on the wrong side of the bed and everyone is screwed that day.
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Old 07-26-2014, 04:49 PM   #7
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I also noticed many others on our flights that had bags I thought were to to big for carryon but still made it.

It does depend on who is working the gates thou. You could get someone that woke up on the wrong side of the bed and everyone is screwed that day.
I agree with PJF on this.... we flew Hawaiian Air to Aulani in 2012 and it was great, no one measured our carry on bags. Though they were within the alloted dimensions.

Then we flew Alaska on our Dec 2013 trip, and again.... same thing, no one measured bags that I could see. I know in the case of Alaska Air there were at least 3 folks with "carry on" bags that just by looking at them I could tell were too big (like huge, not just a couple of inches off). But it did not seem as though they were being hassled. It probably does vary somewhat depending on the Airline staff that are helping you.

On the Alaska Air flight they did a call out at the gate for folks that were willing to check their carry ons (for free) since the flight was so full. We did offer to check our carry ons (in both cases to and from the islands) and got some sort of a treat... I can't remember what it was now... maybe one free cocktail or something? Funny that I cant remember now.... see I should have written that trip report! It helps me remember stuff like that!
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Old 07-27-2014, 02:58 AM   #8
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In the last 8 days, we have been on three HA flights (Portland to HNL, HNL to Kona and Kona to HNL) with only carry on luggage, nobody measured or weighed our bags at any of the stops.
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Old 07-27-2014, 07:14 AM   #9
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I'd chance it, but I'd also be prepared to gate check (and pay any fee to do so) if necessary. That means I'd pack the absolute "can't live without it" stuff (meds, etc.) in a bag I know for sure meets requirements and maybe even fits under the seat,

Have fun!
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Old 07-27-2014, 08:05 AM   #10
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I'd chance it, but I'd also be prepared to gate check (and pay any fee to do so) if necessary. That means I'd pack the absolute "can't live without it" stuff (meds, etc.) in a bag I know for sure meets requirements and maybe even fits under the seat,

Have fun!
I've considered this idea. I always pack all of our meds, toiletries & cameras etc. in a boarding bag that fits under the seat in front of me. I ran thru TJ MAXX yesterday for something and browsed thru the luggage area. Cheapest carry-on I found was $40 (and I really didn't like how it was made) while most were $50-70. We're looking at and additional $42 for the 2 flights if we're forced to check it - so the amount is comparable but of course if we BUY another bag then we have something to show for the money whereas checked bag fees are just another expense with nothing to show for it. Rather than buying another bag what I found that I had been looking for was some sets of packing cubes. We already have several sets but for a trip like this could use a few more and I'd been looking at ordering some from eBags.com. I found these 3-piece Sharper Image sets for $16.99 - nearly half as much as ordering from eBags (although I like the material better on the eBags ones)!! It still made my day to find them for such a good price!

Still no responses on the FlyerTalk forum thread although it has had about 30+ views since I first posted on it yesterday so maybe somebody else will chime in with their experiences. It DOES sound like it depends on who's working the counter and if their panties are in a twist or something.
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Jan 2014 - 5 n @ AKV Jambo House / Aug 2013 - 9 nights @ SSR / Aug 2012 - 9 n @ Boardwalk Villas and HRH / Mar-Apr 2012 6 n @ Bay Lake / August 2011 Disneyland Paris and DCL MED cruise / August 2010 Disney's DVC resort at Hilton Head Island, SC / March 2010 Kidani Village at AKV / August '09 BCV & Vero Beach / May '09 SSR / July '08 AKV & B2B Cruises on The Wonder/ January '08 VWL / August '07 OKW / July '06 Offsite - Waikiki, Kona & Ka'anapali, Hawaii / July '05 Disneyland & Disney Magic West Coast Cruise to the Mexican Riviera / Summer '04 CSR / May '03 Offsite - St. John, USVI / Summer '02 AKL & O.C., MD


















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Old 07-28-2014, 02:21 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anal Annie View Post
I've considered this idea. I always pack all of our meds, toiletries & cameras etc. in a boarding bag that fits under the seat in front of me. I ran thru TJ MAXX yesterday for something and browsed thru the luggage area. Cheapest carry-on I found was $40 (and I really didn't like how it was made) while most were $50-70. We're looking at and additional $42 for the 2 flights if we're forced to check it - so the amount is comparable but of course if we BUY another bag then we have something to show for the money whereas checked bag fees are just another expense with nothing to show for it. Rather than buying another bag what I found that I had been looking for was some sets of packing cubes. We already have several sets but for a trip like this could use a few more and I'd been looking at ordering some from eBags.com. I found these 3-piece Sharper Image sets for $16.99 - nearly half as much as ordering from eBags (although I like the material better on the eBags ones)!! It still made my day to find them for such a good price!

Still no responses on the FlyerTalk forum thread although it has had about 30+ views since I first posted on it yesterday so maybe somebody else will chime in with their experiences. It DOES sound like it depends on who's working the counter and if their panties are in a twist or something.
Just a thought since you mentioned luggage. Check Macy's, they always have coupons available and usually have huge sales. I've gotten some nice TravelPro carryons for around $40-50 ( I've also seen many on clearance and with extra discounts can be found for under $20 )
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Old 08-07-2014, 12:01 AM   #12
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I am MVP gold with Alaska and fly 2 times with them or more per month. They do not check weight or size. Once the bins fill they start gate checking. Prior to boarding they always offer to gate check for free. Every flight. So, if you have to have your bag on the flight get on the plane as soon as possible. If you don't care about put picking up your bag I when you land take advantage of the free gate check.
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