HONOLULU (KHON2) - Changes are on the way for travelers flying out of Daniel K. Inouye International Airport.
Hawaiian Airlines is changing the check-in areas for international and interisland departures.
Hawaiian Airlines says it flies around 10,000 passengers out of Daniel K Inouye Airport each day. And there are times when it almost seems like every one of them is checking in at the same time.
"One time we actually got here about two and a half hours early and it took us just about two hours to get through and we were running over to our plane it gets really bad here," said passenger Elias Yadao.
Over the next several weeks, international passengers will begin to check in at Lobby 4 in Terminal 2, versus Lobby 3 in Terminal 1.
Tour operators began dropping off select passengers on Hawaiian's non-stop flights to Japan directly at Lobby 4 earlier this month, and all passengers traveling non-stop to Japan will begin using Lobby 4 on Wednesday, Dec. 19.
"That takes roughly about a third of the people out of Lobbies 2 and 3 where we operate today. It helps us to balance the operation and provide a better experience to all our guests," said Jeff Helfrick, Vice-President of Airport Operations at Hawaiian Airlines.
Then on Jan. 9, 2019, passengers flying to Hawaiian’s international destinations and American Samoa will check in at Lobby 4.
Team Kokua volunteers will help direct passengers to the appropriate lobby.
“The change will enhance efficiency by having international travelers in Terminal 2, while relieving the congestion that is experienced in Terminal 1 during peak travel times, specifically 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily,” said Hawaii Department of Transportation Director Jade Butay.
Some interisland passengers are already noticing less congestion in their lobby.
"Actually I was amazed. I was telling my husband that it isn't as crowded as normal. So on a week before Christmas, this place is like crazy outside lines. So it's really a good idea," said passenger Irene Smith.
"We want to do our best to have a stress free effortless travel experience. So by moving a third of our guests to Lobby 4 it will provide a better balance," said Helfrick.
Hawaiian Airlines will share Lobby 4 with Qantas Airlines, Philippine Airlines, Air Canada and Korean Air. Terminal signage will be adjusted to reflect the change.
Additional changes taking effect Jan. 9 include moving the neighbor island flight check-in from Lobby 2 to Lobby 3 in Terminal 1. Passengers traveling to North American destinations will continue to check-in at Lobby 2.
Hawaiian Airlines passengers using Lobby 4 will use TSA checkpoints 2 and 3, which are located in Terminal 2. Passengers on neighbor island and North American flights are encouraged to continue using one of the four available TSA checkpoints within Terminal 1.
HDOT has constructed a new TSA checkpoint on the ground level of Terminal 1 between baggage claim carousels 8 and 9 that is available daily between 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. to provide passengers another TSA screening option during peak travel times. The new ground floor TSA checkpoint accommodates general boarding passengers and does not have a separate Precheck line.
It is also not recommended for travelers with strollers, large carry-on baggage, those requiring special assistance or those who are not able to stand on an escalator as passengers using the checkpoint must take an escalator to the second level.