Southwest Airlines is finally heading to Hawaii.
The approval coming as the southwest is locked in a bitter dispute with its mechanics association after a wave in outdoor aircraft due to mechanical issues that have ground dozens of jets.The airline and its mechanics have negotiated a contract for more than six years and they Approximately 2,400 indoor mechanics are looking for larger salaries and what the company has proposed.
Southwest released a loan to start flying to Hawaii in October 201
The airline needed the FAA to sign off plans to fly its Boeing 737 jets over water for long distances. Security inspectors had flown with Southwest to Honolulu from Oakland, California in recent weeks, and met with airline leaders to review Southwest's navigation, maintenance, and other procedures.
The airline's decision to offer service to the Aloha State could make Hawaiian holidays cheaper. In markets where the airline has nonstop service, the average one-way cost is $ 45 lower than in cities without those routes in what is called "Southwest Effect," a study by the University of Virginia found.
Southwest plans to fly to the islands from four California cities: Oakland, San Diego, San Jose and Sacramento and fly to Honolulu, Kahului on Maui, Kona and Lihue on Kauai. The airline also intends to offer service between the islands.
Southwest is planning to grow its flying 5 percent this year, and half of it comes from Hawaii, the airline said last month.
This growth comes at the expense of expanding to some international destinations.
"If it wasn't for Hawaii, we would certainly add more international routes and increase some of our flights," said Southwest CEO Gary Kelly analysts on a January earnings call. "So it's just a matter of priority, and Hawaii thinks I deserve that kind of priority. It's such a great opportunity."
Southwest shares were little changed by the postal market. Shares of Hawaiian Holdings, parent to competitor Hawaiian Airlines, were also flat.