After breakfast at Island Lava Java, we had a quick trip to the airport, and dropped off the rental car with Alamo. Now, Kailua-Kona isn’t a very big airport to begin with, but our airline, Mokulele Airlines, didn’t even leave from the main terminal. It left from the “commuter terminal” which was a bit apart from it.
Check in was interesting. Give them your ID, step on a scale to be weighed along with your carry-on, pay $15 per checked bag, and then have a seat and wait for departure. You can see the gentleman in the yellow vest in the pic below – he was the check-in agent…right next to the waiting area where there were about 20 seats….enough to hold two full planes worth, which was good, because there were two flights to Maui leaving 10 minutes apart, to different parts of the island.
Notice, I didn’t mention TSA. That’s because there was absolutely no security at the commuter terminal. I don’t know if this is because it’s considered a private flight, or doesn’t have enough passengers to warrant it, but it was such a refreshing way to fly. The waiting area:
The other flight to Maui showed up before ours, so I walked the whole 20 feet or so past the check-in desk to snap a shot. Yes, the plane just pulls up along side the check-in area and out you walk!
Soon, our plane arrived as well. As we approached the fence, the ramp agent gave us details…and assigned seats based on our weight. As two big guys, we were assigned row 3 of 4. Walking to our plane:
Walking around the other side to board:
Pre-flight safety briefing…yes, the captain just turned around and talked to us. This is the view from row 3…the cessnas are comfy little planes!
…and with that, a very short taxi and we’re off!
Mokulele Airlines flight 1533
Kailua-Kona, Hawaii (KOA) to Kahului, Maui, Hawaii (OGG)
Depart 10:53, Arrive 11:35, Flight Time 42 minutes
Cessna 208B Grand Caravan, Registration N840MA, Manufactured ???, Seat: 3rd row, Port side
View during taxi:
…and we’re airborne and making a 180:
Passing Kaho’olawe, the smallest of the eight main Hawaiian Islands, with no permanent population:
Soon, we began our turn towards Maui – at this point you could see tons of whales in the ocean, breeching and going back under. It was an absolutely amazing treat to see from the air:
Maui was incredibly green from above, with an amazing valley between the two volcanic ends:
Nice smooth landing, and we were on Maui! A shot after getting off the plane:
…and with that, one of the most pleasant flights I’ve had. My only previous experience on such a small plane was in Guyana a couple years ago, and I loved it. Both of these flights really made me want to get a pilot’s license some day…just what I need…another expensive hobby. Mokulele was a true pleasure to fly, and it was really neat to have a flight that felt like more than just a generic cattle car from place to place. I just wish I had somewhere to look up more data on Cessna tail numbers!
Off to Alamo again to pick up our rental car, and it was off to the Sheraton Maui, our home for the next three days.