Southwest Airlines expands service offering 17 direct flights to Hawaii, how Honolulu airports are preparing

Local News

HONOLULU (KHON2) — Southwest Airlines unveiled an impressive lineup of more than 17 new flights to Hawaii on Thursday, May 13.

Southwest will kickoff direct service from Las Vegas, Los Angeles and Phoenix to the islands in June and will offer deep discounts with flights starting as low as $129 one-way until Friday, May 14.

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The announcement comes as COVID-19 restrictions continue to loosen across the country.

In a statement, a Southwest spokesperson said:
“This schedule is merely the completion of our initial plans for Hawaii that were delayed by the pandemic. During the pandemic, we kept every route within the State of Hawaii, and kept service at all five airports we serve, to support people in Hawaii with the movement of critical supplies, first responders; then, as the Hawaii Safe Travels program began ushering essential and compliant travel.”

Hawaiian Airlines senior vice president of revenue management Brent Overbeek says they do not plan to make any changes due to Southwest’s announcement.

“Having additional competition isn’t really going to change our plans and our formula a whole lot,” Overbeek said. “We have adjusted some pricing in select markets in response to some of the promotional pricing that was put out in the market today.”

He added that Hawaiian Airlines is looking forward to launching service from Phoenix to Maui in the coming weeks.

Hawaii Department of Transportation spokesperson Jai Cunningham says they are discussing how to handle the increase in traffic.

“We’re prepared,” Cunningham said. “It’s a team sort of effort. We are working with the airlines to make certain that we have gates sort of plotted out so that we can handle the number of flights that are coming in.”

Hawaii’s Safe Travels Program is still in effect, requiring pre-arrival COVID tests or quarantine for mainland travelers. Vaccinated transpacific travelers are not exempt yet.

According to Cunningham, there are systems in place to prevent a log jam of passengers arriving in Hawaii.

“A number of the airlines are taking part in the PDDC, which is the Predeparture Document Check,” Cunningham explained. “You literally get wrist-banded to show you supplied all the appropriate documents. And when you get here, that allows you to head straight towards baggage claim.”

Below is a look at Southwest Airlines new flights

The following flights will be available:

Honolulu, Oahunonstop (2x) June 6, 2021 $159
Kahului, Mauinonstop (2x) June 27, 2021 $159
Kona, Island of Hawaiinonstop (2x) Sept. 7, 2021 $159
Lihue, Kauainonstop (2x) Sept. 8, 2021 $159
Honolulu, Oahunonstop June 6, 2021 $129
(nonstop twice daily starts June 27) 
Kahului, Mauinonstop (3x) June 6, 2021 $129
Kona, Island of Hawaiinonstop June 27, 2021 $129
Lihue, Kauainonstop June 27, 2021 $129
Honolulu, Oahunonstop (2x) June 27, 2021 $159
Kahului, Mauinonstop June 27, 2021 $159
Kona, Island of Hawaiinonstop Sept. 7, 2021 $159
Lihue, Kauainonstop Sept. 7, 2021 $159
Honolulu, Oahunonstop (2x) June 6, 2021$129
Kahului, Mauinonstop June 6, 2021$129
(nonstop twice daily starts June 27) 
Kona, Island of Hawaiinonstop June 27, 2021$129
Lihue, Kauainonstop June 29, 2021$129

All tickets booked during the sale must be purchased before May 14 at 6:59 p.m. HST and are valid from June 8 through Nov. 3.

For more information, click here.

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