Topic of the Week: Hawaiian Says Aloha to New York City

For years, Hawaiian had been primarily an airline offering interisland flights and service to the West Coast of the US. There were minor incursions into other parts of the Pacific but the last couple of years have been different. First, Hawaiian has made a big push into Asia with multiple cities in Japan and Korea. Now, Hawaiian is finally going to the East Coast of the US with flights to New York/JFK. Think this will work? Does Hawaiian have a good plan here?

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18 Comments on "Topic of the Week: Hawaiian Says Aloha to New York City"

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Jason
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Whether its a good plan or not those promo fares/loss leader of $212 coach each way before taxes/fee are enticing ($808 FC). I love the idea of better direct service to anywhere. Whether it’s sustainable its a good question. Not sure how many families are too excited about 10.5 hours in coach for vacation.

DesertGhost
Guest

I saw on a.net that the fares $212 and $808 are the primary area codes of New York City and Honolulu respectively. Kinda clever.

Anon
Guest

They already sold out that fare.

Wayne Rutman
Guest
Well, history isn’t on their side. CO’s EWR-HNL and DL’s ATL-HNL are the only East Coast-Hawaii flights that have ever survived. And I assume both those flights benefit from frequent flyers burning their miles and the obvious advantages of operating such a flight from a major hub. Given the price of jet fuel these days, I’d be a little surprised if HA can cover its costs. I suppose they’ll try to heavily promote the flight through travel agents, but how important are such agents these days for leisure travel? I’m about the only East Coaster I know who regularly travels… Read more »
DesertGhost
Guest

I hope the flight works. Between the large population east of Manhattan that uses JFK over EWR, and some regional feed from jetBlue (the flight uses jetBlue’s T5) it may get enough traction to succeed.

David SF eastbay
Member
It will work for anyone needing to stop in Hawaii before heading off elsewhere and for anyone wanting to see whales and an active volcano without leaving the United States. AA did it ages ago to get people to the south pacific but once those routes dropped so did JFK-HNL. Most people on the east coast wanting fun in the sun just take a quick flight to Florida or the Caribbean, no need to go to Hawaii if you have to pay actual money for a ticket and not just go on free miles. Does anyone see a tie up… Read more »
Fred
Guest

At the same time, I can’t imagine that there would be that much connecting traffic on this route – JFK isn’t great for connections, and if passengers from anywhere (perhaps except elsewhere in the northeast) are going to connect, they could easily do so on the west coast or a few airports in between.

David M
Guest

Aviation Week has a story this morning that Hawaiian is working on an agreement with another airline to provide connections at JFK:

http://www.aviationweek.com/aw/generic/story_generic.jsp?channel=aviationdaily&id=news/avd/2011/11/18/08.xml&headline=Hawaiian%20Targets%20Connection%20Partner%20For%20Honolulu-New%20York

Unrelated, I noticed that the URL for this blog post talks about the Qatar Airways chief’s comments, not Hawaiian.

A
Guest

South Florida is a heck of a lot closer for a winter getaway for New Yorkers. Hawaii still has that aura of being an “exotic” destination, but it’s not cheap to get there, nor is anything cheap once you get there. Cheap seats might fill the planes but I doubt any family is going to make an annual excursion of it. I just don’t see it lasting very long.

David M
Guest

Prices in Hawaii aren’t significantly higher than anywhere else for most things. Gas is more but actually not too much worse than California. Prices for things at Costco, Target, and WalMart in Hawaii are comparable to mainland prices.

flysingapore
Member

I wonder how much connectivity there will be in both directions between JFK and Asia. May be a consolidator’s dream and may steal low-end VFR traffic between New York and Asia.

pferdinand39
Member
Hawaii is still a destination where brick and mortar travel agents can compete with the online agencies. Bulk fares are available in conunction with a hotel or car rental pacakage. Hawaiian is going to have to make nice with the tour operators travel agents use to book these packages. During summer and holiday periods the fares are high enough to pay commision to the operators. In the shoulder seasons it might be another story. Hawaiian can also sell tickets to the Orient and South Pacific with their newly expanded network. Wonder how much feed Jet Blue has to connect with… Read more »
Sanjeev M
Guest

The other thing is that visa restrictions have reduced significantly for Asian tourists, particularly Korea and Japan. China is almost visa-free I think. Manila also has demand to Hawaii. So it makes sense for Hawaiian to target those passengers and tourists from Asia with packages.

The A330’s will save them some fuel, and they’re pretty densely packed. However, I don’t think Honolulu will ever be a connecting hub. It’s just too far out of the way.

UA may respond by bringing back free meals on EWR-HNL but that’s about all the response I see.

John
Guest

Both Taiwan and China still require US visas. Japan and South Korea are part of the Visa Waiver Program, though.

SubwayNut
Guest
Well, according to the JFK Airport Wikipedia page (that is not at all a verifiable source) Hawaiian will be servicing at the amazing (although a long walk from AirTrain) Terminal 5 as the only airline their other than JetBlue. This makes me wonder can the new Terminal 5 handle wide-bodied jets at all? Since these flights, although long are considered domestic, they could use that terminal (JetBlue’s terminal is the only one without customs) for both arrivals and departures and connect to JetBlue’s short hops in the region (this would be intra-terminal connections so really short) can be the flights… Read more »
yo
Guest

If any plane could work its the A330. But, history is against them. Does CO still do EWR-HNL? I remember TZ doing JFK-HNL on the L1011 (boy does that sound cool). But I don’t think anyone made a (profitable) go of it since Pan Am and United’s DC-8’s

pferdinand39
Member

CO still does EWR/HNL, and with decent loads.

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