Hawaiian Airlines is launching the first ever scheduled non stop service linking Hawaii with the United States East Coast.
And the question on everyone's mind is, “What took you so long?”
Hawaiian launched non stop flights to the US West Coast decades ago, and it now serves 10 gateways, including six cities in California as well as Las Vegas, Nevada, Phoenix, Arizona, Portland, Oregon, and Seattle, Washington.
In recent years, Hawaiian has focused on expanding its presence in the Asia Pacific, launching flights to American Samoa, Australia, two cities in Japan, the Philippines, South Korea, and Tahiti. And yet the Asia Pacific represents only its third most important market.
The Eastern United States is second after the Western United States, which is first.
Go figure …
Start Spreading the News
The daily nonstop service will link New York City 's John F. Kennedy International Airport with Honolulu International Airport. Service will commence on 4 June 2012.
"We are bringing Hawaii to New York ,” says Mark Dunkerley, Hawaiian's President and CEO.
“There's nowhere like Hawaii and no airline like Hawaiian. With the best service on the ground and in the air, with 150 flights a day among our islands, and with our warm Hawaiian hospitality, Hawaiian Airlines is always the best value-for-money ticket to paradise. We're the airline of choice for millions of people on the West Coast and in Asia, and we're excited to be bringing the Hawaiian experience to New York.”
The new route will be a boon to the 50th State's tourism industry, adding more than 107,000 new air seats annually to Hawaii 's tourism industry from the Eastern United States, which is the state's second largest geographic source market for visitors.
"Hawaiian's new service will generate an estimated US$156 million in direct visitor spending and US$17 million in state tax revenue annually for our tourism economy and will provide much desired direct air service to New York City making it more convenient and accessible for travelers from the East Coast,” says Mike McCartney, President and CEO of the Hawaii Tourism Authority.
“This flight is of strategic importance to promoting the Hawaiian Islands brand to our second largest market, and we look forward to welcoming our guests."
Did Anyone Say Hong Kong?
As a Hong Kong based travel writer that loves Hawai'i, I have only question: when can we expect Hawaiian Airlines (or another carrier, for that matter) to launch non stop flights linking Hawai'i with Hong Kong?
I seriously resent the fact that it's cheaper to fly from Hong Kong to California than to Hawai'i – even though Hawai'i is much closer.