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Hawaiian Airlines to offer cheaper seat option starting in 2019

HONOLULU (KHON2) - "Authentic culture, effortless travel, genuine hospitality."

In a presentation to its investors, Hawaiian Airlines said that is what Hawaii travelers want, and what the company strives for.

Along with that dedication, the company is making some changes.

In 2019, Hawaiian will begin Sacramento to Maui flights, as well as Boston to Honolulu.

For seat choices, the Airlines currently offers the following options: Premium Cabin, Extra Comfort, and Main Cabin.

Starting 2019, a fourth tier will be added: the addition of Main Cabin Basic. It's a bare-bones version: no ticket changes or standby; seats are assigned after check-in, and though you can earn HawaiianMiles, travelers who choose this option will not be eligible for bonus miles. Boarding last is also part of the basic option.

Aviation expert Peter Forman says the new option means cheaper prices.

"It gives you more choice. If you are someone trying to get to the mainland, as inexpensively as possible, you've got a choice as less expensive as before," he explains.

Forman adds cheaper tickets still means money for the Airlines.

"It really fills up the airplane a little bit more and brings more revenue, so a good move for Hawaiian to do," said Forman.

Another major focus for Hawaiian Airlines is modernizing their space at the Daniel K. Inouye International Airport in Honolulu, which officials say is a huge need.

"This is an airline that continues to grow, and they'll run into growth pains if airport growth doesn't keep up with the airlines," said Forman.

The goal is to improve check-in and arrivals for guests.
Hawaiian Airlines plans on adding new ticket counter spaces, new security checkpoints, and by 2021, have more gates and a new baggage system in place.

"The airline business is a competitive place. You have west coast passengers going to Asia destinations. They're going to change planes in Honolulu. So, how nice that experience is will determine if they want to fly to Hawaiian again," said Forman.


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