Alaska and Hawaii and part of the USA

In the FAQs for the flight planner, it states:

What is the service area of FlightAware flight planning? Do you support Hawaii and Alaska? (Back to top)
Currently we only support domestic US flights. We’re currently testing support for Alaska and Hawaii and we plan to extend support to Canada and the Caribbean in the future.

Can you change “domestic US flights” to “contiguous 48 states” or “lower 48 states” or “the states between Canada and Mexico”? It’s been a pet peeve of mine ever since I lived in Hawaii that people don’t consider Alaska or Hawaii to be domestic.


I think it should be changed, too, so that it’s as clear as possible. However, flights between the mainland and Hawaii/Alaska are not domestic flights insofar as the majority of the flight is conducted outside the US which is actually the reason we don’t support those state inherently.

Thanks. I know the flights between the contiguous states and Alaska/Hawaii are international, at least the portion that isn’t over USA territory. Any plans to support intra-Alaska and intra-Hawaii flights?.

That’s weird that people think that. If there was a U.S. state in Europe, flights to and from there would be domestic. As long as it starts and ends in the same country, so the definition goes.

How about the “contiguous and counterminous United States” ???

Not really. The portion outside of the USA territory would be considered international.

As an example, the passenger tax on airline tickets is around 8.5%. If you buy a ticket between, say, Salt Lake City and Denver that is $100 then the tax would be $8.50. However, a flight between Oakland and Honolulu at $100 would not have a tax of $8.50. The tax would be based on the percentage of the flight over USA territory. Let’s say the flight is 2500 miles. The flight is over domestic territory (including offshore waters) for 25 miles after leaving OAK and 25 miles on approach to Honolulu. The tax would be computed as follows:
2500 - total distance
50 - distance over domestic territory
2450 - distance over international territory

The 50 miles is 2% of the trip. The tax would be 0.17% or $1.70 on the $100.

However, don’t think the government is letting you get away with something. On flights to and from Hawaii there is an international departure tax.

And don’t forget that Continental United States is quite often used wrongly. It means ALL states on North American continent. In other words, all of the states except Hawaii.

Ahhhhhh, twas using the dictionary definition for a domestic flight, which is defined as a flight that begins and ends in the same country. Here is where I’m confused.

From the FAA site;

A Domestic Flight is defined as one which departs and lands wholly within domestic U.S. airspace (i.e., the conterminous 48 states, Alaska, Hawaii and/or Puerto Rico), and does not fly through any international or foreign airspace. International airspace includes oceanic airspace controlled by FAA Air Route Traffic Control Centers (ARTCC) at Oakland, New York and/or Anchorage.

Since it’s impossible to fly to Hawaii or Puerto Rico without flying through international airspace, why did they bother putting it there? Can you even get to Alaska without going through Canadian or international airspace?

You’re over thinking it— the FAA definition is simply implying that a flight between say Anchorage and Fairbanks would be defined as a “Domestic Flight”. Same as Hilo to Honolulu or San Juan to Mayaguez.

Ahhh, yeah. Didn’t think of that :blush:. Thanks.