How to Get from Oahu to Maui

Ready to get to know the second largest island of Oahu? With its world-famous beaches and humpback whale watching at specific times of the year, it's totally worth the adventure!

Katherine Betances

Katherine Betances

7 min read

How to Get from Oahu to Maui

Maui | ©Tony Webster

Maui is one of the most important islands of Hawaii. It is also the name given to one of the most important demigods of the Polynesian culture and who, according to their traditions, formed the Polynesian islands including, of course, the Hawaiian archipelago.

Traveling to Maui from Honolulu is one of the best things to do on Oahu during your vacation. As you will soon realize, this new and paradisiacal destination integrates the greatest diversity of tropical flora and fauna you could hope for. It is an excellent alternative to admire and get to know exotic landscapes in a state less altered by humans.

If you've already finished the must-do activities of a first trip to Oahu, such as visiting Pearl Harbor, exploring the island's North Shore, attending a Luau show and taking a sunset cruise in Waikiki, it's time to broaden your horizons!

1. The best way to get there: an organized tour

View from Maui| ©Brian Lauer
View from Maui| ©Brian Lauer

Undoubtedly the best way to visit Maui from Oahu is to hire the services of an expert company as an organized tour. This will allow you to embark on a day-long adventure, explore the highlights of Maui and be back at your hotel in Waikiki by sunset.

Considered among the best tours to do in and around Oahu, you will find several tour operators that offer this service due to the interest that this type of adventure awakens in travelers.

What do these excursions offer?

You must keep in mind that the specific details of the excursions may be modified depending on the company you hire for the experience. However, in general terms, this type of excursions depart before 07h so that you can make the most of the day.

From Honolulu you will take a plane to Maui and once at the destination airport you will start a road trip that will take you through the highlights and best attractions of the island.

There is much to see and enjoy on the island of Maui and while the list of attractions may vary, some of the featured activities include: Visiting and touring Waianapanapa State Park (one of the most beautiful in all of Hawaii); seeing Puahokamoa Falls or Wailua Falls; passing through the old Paia plantations and, of course, an excursion to see the unique black sand beach of Hohokalani (a beach formed by lava pebbles from volcanic cliffs).

These are almost always shared excursions that take place in small to medium sized groups (from 8 to 20 participants). The organizing company provides travelers with all transfers; round-trip airfare, transportation from the hotel in Waikiki to the airport and transportation in private minibus through the various points of interest in Maui.

Useful information

  • Price: For this type of adventure you will pay about 580€. The price includes all transportation, entrance fees and round trip airfare on the Oahu-Maui route.
  • Duration of the trip: It is a full day group tour so you should reserve at least one day of your itinerary for this activity.
  • Recommended if... you are visiting Hawaii for several days, for example 5 days on Oahu or more, and you want to see new destinations. It is highly recommended for travelers who travel to this destination for the second time and like the idea of venturing into new territories, you will have a lot of fun!

Book a guided tour of Oahu

2. Go on your own: Travel by plane in Oahu

Honolulu International Airport| ©redlegsfan21
Honolulu International Airport| ©redlegsfan21

While it is true that transportation options on Oahu are a bit limited, you have the alternative of organizing your trip on your own and travel to Maui as the locals do and that is by using the main means of transportation between the islands of Hawaii: the airplane.

Since it is the only means of transportation available at the moment, alternatives abound and here is all the information you need to know.


If you decide to travel on your own to Maui, you will have to take a flight from Honolulu International Airport (HNL).

However, in Maui you will find two airports and depending on the airline and availability your flight can land at either Kapalua Airport (JHM) or Kahului Airport (OGG).

One of the main advantages of visiting Oahu, in addition to the many tourist attractions, is how well connected the island is to other areas of the archipelago. The Oahu airport has numerous direct flights to different destinations, facilitating the task of the traveler and saving time by not having to make stops.

Once in the air, flights usually take less than 1 hour to complete the journey.

Companies that offer this service

On the island of Oahu you will find several companies that offer this service oriented both to the thousands of tourists who come every season and to the inhabitants of Hawaii who frequently travel between the islands for various reasons.

Below is a list of local airlines, large and medium, that connect both destinations with direct flights every day and some even several times a day.

  • Hawaiian Airlines Hawaii's oldest and leading airline is an ideal choice for travelers looking for reliable and efficient service. In addition to Maui, this airline connects Oahu with the other islands of the archipelago.
  • Southwest Airlines Founded in 2019, it is a recently created company that has managed to position itself very quickly in the taste of the locals. At the moment it offers flight with direct connection only for two islands, the Big Island and Maui.
  • Mokulele Airlines This company merged with another small Hawaiian airline named Makani Kai Air in 2020; together they offer a great service to the public. Many of their flights depart from commuter terminals, which, having less air traffic than the main terminals, offer a smoother flow of passengers and shorter wait times.

Useful information

  • Price: Round-trip economy class airfare on the Oahu - Maui route usually costs approximately $145.
  • Travel time: The flight time between the two islands ranges from 40 minutes to an hour. You must also add the transfer between airports and the waiting time at the airports.
  • Recommended if... you are going to be many days in Hawaii and have time to spare. Although the adventure of seeing Maui can be done in just one day, I only recommend it if you make the journey with the company of an expert guide for the entire excursion. Otherwise dedicate at least 2 days to this experience, so you can solve any possible unforeseen eventuality.
  • Organized excursion
  • The best option for tourists
  • Price: 580€ approximately.
  • Duration: 12 hours.
  • Traveling by plane
  • The locals' option
  • Price: 145€ only the air ticket
  • Duration: approximately 2 days.

Is there a ferry from Oahu to Maui ?

Hawaii Superferry| ©billsoPHOTO
Hawaii Superferry| ©billsoPHOTO

Although they are two of the most visited and important islands of the archipelago, there is currently no passenger ferry service connecting the two destinations.

However, between 2003 and 2009 a public transportation service known as Super Ferry operated in the Hawaiian Islands, whose route departed from the port of Honolulu in Oahu and the port of Kahului in Maui to take passengers to all the nearby islands, making the same route several times a day.

Over the years, several unsuccessful and unsuccessful attempts have been made to bring the Hawaii Superferry back into operation and I hope they succeed!

Tips for the Oahu to Maui route

Airplane in Oahu| ©KurtClark
Airplane in Oahu| ©KurtClark

In order to make your trip to Maui more enjoyable, here are a few tips that you should take into consideration.

Keep an eye out for deals on flights.

If you are traveling on your own you should know that it is possible to get cheap flights from Oahu to Maui if you know where and when to look. The first tip is to always check all available airlines as many times they publish last minute deals.

As a second tip I recommend you to take advantage of the low tourist season in Hawaii, when the lower tourist influx reduces the demand and with it the prices. Besides May, you can take advantage of this circumstance if you travel to Oahu in October or the first weeks of November.

If you are traveling in high season, book in advance

On the flip side of the coin you will find that the high season months are worth booking well in advance for excursions on Oahu or to nearby destinations.

The reason for this is simple: places sell out quickly and it pays to have all the important details properly organized well in advance.

Snorkeling in Maui

Have you snorkeled in Oahu? If so, you will love to repeat the experience on the beaches of Maui. Check if the company organizing the excursion offers this experience (many do) and if not, negotiate with them the possibility of including it. you won't regret it!

Book your snorkeling activity in Oahu

How far is Oahu from Maui?

Map of Hawaii| ©Internet Archive Book Images
Map of Hawaii| ©Internet Archive Book Images

According to official data the distance between Oahu and Maui is approximately 178 km; if you make a comparison and look at the map of the archipelago you will realize that going to Maui from Oahu is closer than going to the Big Island from Oahu, another popular destination among travelers and that we recommend to visit if you want to see an island with an active volcano.

In terms of flight time, this distance translates to short flights with a minimum duration of 35 minutes and a maximum of 50 minutes.