Kona Airport Departures KOA

Ellison Onizuka Kona International Airport at Keāhole

Address: 73-200 Kupipi St, Kalaoa, HI 96740, United States
Airport code: KOA
Elevation: 55 ft
Phone: +1 808-327-9520
Serves: Kailua
Passengers: 4,058,721
Flights: 114,222

KOA Departures today

Kona International Airport departures

Onizuka Ellison, the Kona International Airport at Keahole, is located on the island of Hawaii, in the Kalaoa CDP of Hawaii County, Hawaii, USA. The airport services Kona flight departures to the town of Kailua-Kona and the resorts of the North Kona and South Kohala districts on the leeward side of the island of Hawaii.

Flight routes

Most flights go to Honolulu, Hawaii. Another popular destination in this state are Kahului and Lihue. The other KOA airport departures go to the mainland of the US.  Some of these airports serve as hub for flying to other destinations in the US and beyond.

Rest of US

Available airlines

The airport has 2 terminals with gates 1-5 located from terminal 1 and boarding gates 6-10 at terminal 2. There is 1 runway of 11,000 feet for all KOA departments to take off all kinds of large aircraft. Many of the flights are operated by:

  • United Airlines
  • Hawaiian Airlines
  • American Airlines
  • Delta Air Lines
  • Alaska Airlines
  • Southwest airlines

There are also Kona flight departures for Cargo with Aloha Air Cargo, Kalitta Air and UPS Airlines.

Passenger statistics

The Kona departures are slowly increasing each year with a single decline. In 1970 only 0.5 million passengers and in 2019 it amounted to more than 4 million. Due to the pandemic, there will unfortunately be a significant decline in 2020 and 2021.

History Kona Airport

The first Kona departures took place in 1970. There were open air terminals and a 6,500 foot runway. Half a million passengers used the airport in the first year. Hawaiian and Aloha Airlines operated the most flights to Maui and Kauai. It wasn’t until a decade later that United Airlines started operating flights to the mainland. It wasn’t until the 1990’s that the runway was extended to what it is today, 11,000 ft. The name Ellison Onizuka was added to the airport’s designation in 2017. Ellison was an astronaut born on the island.

Checking in

Check-in desks

When you arrive at the airport, look for information boards with information about check-in for your flight before KOA airport departures. An airport information desk, situated near the luggage drop-off check-in desks, may also provide important information.


Step by step process
  • For your flight, find the appropriate check-in counter to start your Kona departures.
  • Prepare the following documents: passport (or national ID), online reservation booking number (code), or a paper copy of your ticket (if you have one).
  • At the check-in desk, you will be asked to show the documents listed above, and you will be able to hand over checked baggage, which will be measured and then sent to be loaded into the flight.
  • Following the presentation of your documents and the review of your luggage, you will be given a boarding pass that will enable you to board the plane and have KOA flight departures.
  • Once you’ve finished the check-in process, continue to the proper entrance, where and passenger will be subjected to a security check.
  • Passengers must position items such as keys, telephones, ties, electrical devices, and hats, shirts, and shawls in the provided baskets and place them on the conveyor belt during the security check.
  • You will then continue to the appropriate gate to board the plane after passing through security. On your boarding pass, the boarding time is indicated. When it is time to fly, airline staff will make an announcement informing passengers to do so. Then Kona airport departures take place on the 11,000 feet runway.
Procedure during security check
  • Show security officers your airline ticket.
  • Liquids can only be transported in hand luggage in containers with a maximum capacity of 3,3 ounces and must be stored inside a see-through, resealable 1-liter plastic bag. To go through the scanner, place the plastic bag in one of the baggage trays.
  • Laptops, tablets, cameras, and other mobile devices must be taken out of the bag and stored in one of the containers.
  • Keys, mobile phones, coins, and valuables must be placed in the trays. If you have a belt on, please remove it.
  • You can step into the body scanner frame after the bags and objects have been scanned.
  • Safety staff can also conduct a manual search on you.
Immigration and customs at departure
  • Before and during your trip, you may be exposed to an immigration and customs search when you leave the airport.
  • When you introduce yourself for the search, make sure you have your ID, passport, visa, and all other relevant travel documentation with you. Explain why you’re going on this tour.
  • Consult with the airline employees and make sure that you are not bringing any prohibited objects.
  • The amount of money you would have in your hand on a domestic or international flight is strictly controlled by the country’s top monetary authority.
Ground transportation

Directions: via the Queen Kaahumanu Highway/HI-19 you can travel to many hotels on the west coast. If you want to go east, take the HI-190 towards Hilo and possibly further to Kalapana or the ‘Ōla’a Forest Reserve area.

  • Traveling by taxi is easy. They are ready when you walk out of the terminal. Some guide prices for a taxi:
    • Kailua Kona Town $25
    • Uncle Billy’s Kona Bay Hotel  $25
    • Royal Kona Resort  $25
    • Kona Hospital $45
    • Sheraton Keauhou Bay Resort  $35
    • Hilton Waikoloa Village/Waikoloa Marriott $50
    • Kings Shops $50
    • Volcano/Hilo $300
    • Kohala $120
    • Waikoloa Village  $63
  • Car rental: a good way to explore the island is to take a rental car. These are easy to rent at the airport. The site of the car rental agencies is a 10-minute walk away. There are also free shuttles that will take you to the property if you are uncomfortable with your bags. Eight companies are present, such as Avis, Hertz, National, Dollar and Alamo.

You can park just in front of the terminal at the airport. You will therefore be in the terminal within a few minutes. The first fifteen minutes is free parking, after which it is a few USD per hour. There is a possibility for electric vehicles to charge.


Around the island there are many options to stay. It is not only popular to stay on the coast but also in the nature reserve. Some popular options scattered around the island:

  • Rainforest Eco Cabin
  • The Westin Hapuna Beach Resort
  • Hilton Grand Vacations Club Kings Land Waikoloa
  • Hilton Grand Vacations Club Ocean Tower Waikoloa Village
  • Holiday Inn Express & Suites Kailua-Kona, an IHG Hotel
  • Royal Kona Resort
  • The Inn at Kulaniapia Falls
  • SCP Hilo Hotel
  • Castle Hilo Hawaiian Hotel