Which Airport in Maui Do You Need? (& What to Do When You Land)


Before we booked our trip, we wanted to know exactly what we would need once we landed and how far we had to go to get it. For us, coming from the mainland USA, the default airport is the international airport on Maui, OGG at Kahului.

If you are arriving on an international flight and are landing on Maui, OGG is your arrival airport code.

What Airports are on Maui?

There are three airports on Maui, but you will probably only need to know about Kahului Airport (OGG), three miles east of the town of Kahului. There are three smaller airports for small commuter planes that fly locally.

Maui Airport at Kahului (OGG)

Kahului – most visitors from the mainland will land at this airport

OGG is likely where you will land if you are coming from anywhere other than the Hawaii region. Many airlines serve Kahului airport, including large commercial airlines and smaller taxis.

The airport has two intersecting runways and full air carrier facilities for domestic overseas and interisland commercial service. Kahului Airport provides commuter/air taxi and general aviation operations, including helicopter operations in separate locations.

https://airports.hawaii.gov/ogg/airport-info/

The larger commercial planes all land at Kahului airport, which is next to the car rental companies and the city of Kahului. Most travelers use this airport and travel to the major resort areas is easy from here.

If you are flying in a small plane or commuting from another Hawaiian Island, you have some more choices:

Small Regional Airports on Maui

Kapalua Airport – for commuters and visitors from the Hawaiian islands

The small airport near Kapalua on the west side of Maui is served by Pacific Wings and other commuter-type airlines — only smaller propeller commuter planes. Kapalua Airport (JHM) is a short distance from the resort destinations of Kaanapali and Lahaina.

Hana Airport – also for commuters and visitors from the Hawaiian islands

Hana Airport (HNM) is served by Pacific Wings commuter planes mostly originating from other Hawaiian islands. Since there is only one winding road leading to and from Hana, sometimes flying is a faster choice for visitors and locals alike.

For example, if you are coming from the Big Island and want to explore Hana on the east side of Maui but are short for time, you can charter a small plane to the Hana Airport (HNM).

Hana Airport supports commuter, unscheduled air taxi and general aviation activities on a 119-acre site on the east shore of Maui, about three miles northwest of the town of Hana.  The single runway serves the passenger terminal and general aviation and airport support facilities south of the runways.  Vehicular access to the airport from Hana Highway is provided by Alalele Place.

https://airports.hawaii.gov/hnm/airport-info/

Landing on Maui

The winds are strong, and landing on Maui is often the most terrifying landing I’ve had. But we make it!

Being thankful you’re alive is one way to start a vacation, and why stop the gratitude there? Enjoy the beauty of Maui and be grateful for each day you’re there, too. Aloha.

Baggage Claim

After you kiss the ground for landing safely, head to the baggage claim facilities located on the ground level. (As you exit the gate area to the ground level, via the escalator or elevator, turn right.)

After collecting any luggage you may have, now to can either take the bus or a shuttle or a rental car to your destination.

If you are renting a car, you can either wait for a bus to take you to the car rental area, or walk there. Might as well walk.

Yes, I prefer to walk the 15 minutes (or less, depending on which car rental company you choose) and beat the herd. Yet another reason to travel with carry-on only. The walk will likely be hot and you will probably not feel like doing it after getting off a long flight, but why not live a little? You’re in Maui!

If you opt for the public transportation route, follow the signs and the mass of people waiting outside in the scorching hot parking lot across from the airport arrivals wing.

Is it Necessary to Rent a Car on Maui?

While renting a car isn’t necessary, it is recommended if you want to explore the whole Island. If you are staying in Kihei (south Maui beach town popular with tourists) in one place close to amenities for the entire short trip, then you can get away with not having a car. Maui County operates a public bus service, and taxis and shuttles are also available.

But if you want to do fun things on your own like experience the Haleakala sunrise or road to Hana, a car is the way to go.

Maui Kahului Airport Maps

From the OGG airport, car rental locations are a short walk away. Exit the airport, cross the road, and start walking left. You can see Costco is pretty close, southwest of the airport.

Maui Airport Arrival and Departure Times

For up-to-date flight info, including flight tracker and air traffic map of flights to Maui, see https://airports.hawaii.gov/ogg/flights/.

Maui Airport Bus

Kahului Airport transportation services include shuttles to hotels and local bus services to and from the airport:

Maui Airport Routes

  • Route 40 (Upcountry Islander) — Operates every 90 minutes from 6:00 a.m. to 10:11 p.m.
  • Route 35 (Haiku Islander) — Operates every 90 minutes from 5:30 a.m. to 9:40 p.m.

For Maui bus routes and information, click here.

What is the Distance from Kahului Airport to Resort Areas?

Lahaina is approximately 25 miles west.
Kihei is approximately 10 miles south.
Kaanapali is approximately 29 miles west.

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I like to share my travel experiences and save others some time, money, and effort in planning their own adventures.

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