Secrets of Sea-Tac

The Best Nonstop Flights from Seattle

Three of Sea-Tac's newest direct flights, and three other airports you should be using.

By Allison Williams May 24, 2016 Published in the June 2016 issue of Seattle Met

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From: Sea-Tac
To: Hong Kong
Duration: 13 hours, 45 minutes

Delta’s Seattle 2014 expansions have meant nonstop flights to major hubs like Paris, Amsterdam, and Shanghai, plus this one on an Airbus A330 whose business-class seats fold down completely flat for the long haul. Hong Kong has Taoist temples, night markets, skyscrapers, and a Disney park all crammed into a tiny corner on China’s coast.


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Image: Photopixel

From: Sea-Tac
To: Cancun
Duration: 5 hours, 45 minutes

Alaska and Delta both added the east coast Mexican destination in recent years, useful for getting your spring break on or making a connecting flight to the suddenly hot Caribbean destination just a short hop away: Cuba.


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Image: Aceshot

From: Sea-Tac
To: Nashville
Duration: 4 hours, 35 minutes

The day Alaska Airlines launched Music City service in September 2015, the inaugural flight’s pilot, also a member of a Northwest men’s chorus, serenaded the passengers. It’s hard—and inadvisable—to avoid live music in Nashville, be it the taping of the Grand Ole Opry broadcast or the classic singer-songwriter haunt the Bluebird Cafe.



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Orcas Island

Image: seastock

From: Seattle's King County International
To: Eastsound, Orcas Island
Duration: 40 minutes

Though Kenmore Air is best known for the floatplanes that soar from Lake Union, the scrappy small-plane airline also flies wheeled Cessnas from the airstrip everyone calls Boeing Field. In the time it takes to cross the floating bridge at rush hour, you could be in the San Juans, tossing back homemade ice cream sandwiches and beer at Island Hoppin’ Brewery.



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Image: Marty Wakat

From: Bellingham International
To: Kona, Hawaii
Duration: 6 hours, 40 minutes

Alaska announced the brand-new seasonal route in April; it’ll start when the Bellingham-to-paradise flights kick off again in November. The Big Island destination is popular with snorkelers; just 20 minutes south of the airport, Kahaluu State Park has a shallow bay and a hearty sea turtle population.



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From: BC's Vancouver International
To: Auckland, New Zealand
Duration: 13 hours, 45 minutes

You can’t get to Australia or New Zealand from Sea-Tac, so rather than a Los Angeles layover, consider a three-hour drive to Vancouver, then a nonstop on Air New Zealand’s 777. The Kiwis are still getting mileage out of the country’s Lord of the Rings film locations, which mix well with glacier-hopping, skydiving adventure travel.


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