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What is Keeping Southwest Airlines From Flying to Hawaii?

Discussion in 'Vacation Travel Information' started by MULTIZ321, Oct 30, 2018.

  1. MULTIZ321

    MULTIZ321 TUG Member

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    What is Keeping Southwest Airlines From Flying to Hawaii?
    By Hugo Martin/ Business/ Los Angeles Times/ latimes.com

    "Southwest Airlines, the nation’s most popular domestic carrier, plans to begin selling tickets to Hawaii as soon as the end of this year, with flights taking off next year.

    That was one of the takeaways from a conference call between executives of the Dallas-based airline and analysts during a discussion of third-quarter earnings.

    During the Thursday call, analysts were anxious to get details about the timing of ticket sales to the Aloha State by the low-cost carrier. For good reason: The more competition on a route, the lower airfares will drop.

    “Our goal continues still to be to sell tickets at the end of this year and operate flights early next year,” said Michael G. Van de Ven, chief operating officer at Southwest Airlines.

    The delay has to do with a certificate needed from the Federal Aviation Administration called ETOPS, which stands for Extended-range Twin-engine Operational Performance Standards. Planes that are ETOPS certified are tested to operate safely for extended periods of time — at least 60 minutes — away from an airfield or airport even after an engine failure. Flights from California to Hawaii can take up to six hours.

    Van de Ven said the review process began about 12 months ago, when Southwest Airlines announced its plans to fly to Hawaii, and the FAA process typically takes between 12 and 18 months to complete.

    Southwest Airlines has said that it plans to fly to four airports in Hawaii from Oakland Metropolitan Airport, San Diego International Airport, Mineta San Jose International Airport and Sacramento International Airport. Flights from Los Angeles International Airport may be added later, airline officials said....."

    [​IMG]
    A Southwest Airlines plane taxis on the tarmac after arriving at Los Angeles International Airport. The Dallas-based airline plans to begin selling tickets to flights to Hawaii by the end of the year. (Kevork Djansezian / Getty Images)


    Richard
     
  2. jehb2

    jehb2 TUG Member

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    Well I already purchased our tickets to Hawaii. I knew they wouldn't be up and running but I sure was hoping for some crazy grand opening special.
     
  3. pspercy

    pspercy TUG Member

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    timing of ticket sales to the Aloha State by the low-cost carrier.

    It's been a long time since SWA was low cost, at least around DFW area.

    Still, hope they get going soon, need Maui tickets for next October and a good fare war might help :)
     
  4. T_R_Oglodyte

    T_R_Oglodyte TUG Lifetime Member

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    same is true in Seattle.
     
  5. Luanne

    Luanne TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    We got our tickets to Maui for March as well. But since we used miles I wasn't out any money.
     
  6. bnoble

    bnoble TUG Member

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    I almost never check them from DTW (because you have to check their site and can't use a fare comparison tool) anymore. It's not worth the bother, because they aren't less expensive. I live in a DL hub, so the routings on SWA are almost always less convenient.
     
  7. Blues

    Blues Tug Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    True, they're usually as expensive as legacy carriers, and sometimes more expensive. But I find it worth it to compare, and usually to fly SWA even when the (base) fares are the same. Free baggage and free changes make it more than worth it to me to fly SWA. But I do miss those early years when they actually were a low cost carrier.

    ETA - and for the SF Bay area to LV, they usually are cheaper. So often that I frequently don't even look at the legacies any more.
     
  8. bnoble

    bnoble TUG Member

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    I have free baggage on Delta, and non-stop flights are worth a lot more than being able to change them later (which I almost never do).
     
  9. pedro47

    pedro47 TUG Review Crew: Expert TUG Member

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    According to the latest Southwest Airlines website announcement they are now blaming the federal government shutdow FAA agency as part of the delay approval process.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2019
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  10. deniseh

    deniseh TUG Member

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    Sitting here in Nashville airport waiting to board a connecting flight with southwest. I hear southwest gate personnel at the next gate looking for volunteers to take a later flight to DC and get a $600 voucher. She stated SW is flying to Hawaii now as a way to get volunteers. I was surprised because I still haven’t seen that Hawaii flights are actually available to book yet. Unfortunately my flight is not overbooked because I would love a $600 voucher.
     
  11. JIMinNC

    JIMinNC TUG Member

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    That's also my beef with flying SWA - I can go nonstop from Charlotte to so many places on American versus one or two stops/plane changes on Southwest. Plus I like to select my own seats in advance. Only flown SWA once in my life, and rarely even check their fares/schedules now. I've never quite understood the enthusiasm so many feel for SWA.
     
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  12. Luanne

    Luanne TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    You either "get" Southwest, or you don't.

    Some of the reasons I "get" and love them:
    - Employees
    - Great website
    - No baggage fees
    - No fees if you cancel or change flights (is there any other airline that offers this?)
    - Serves most areas I travel to, many nonstop
     
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  13. vacationhopeful

    vacationhopeful TUG Review Crew: Rookie TUG Member

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    I truly like taking "bumps" off Southwest flights over the years. I get the price of my ticket back and a free flight to my destination. Sometimes, I got MORE vouchers as an enducement to give-up your seat on THAT FLIGHT.

    Besides the travel vouchers, I got a FREE hotel room on a layover with one of those 'bumps'. I rode with the flight attendents to the hotel at night, ate breakfast with them and we all rode back to the airport the next morning. The flight deck crew flies a different schedule than the flight attendants who seem to stay with the plane.

    I was really close to getting 'status' on SWA .. so I booked some cheap 'travel around the airports' one early December midweek for 2 days. Getting status was based on "tickets" segments back then.

    I explained those 2 days off to my coworkers .... I was (cough, cough) sick.

    Booked separate (segments) flights, carry on bag, volunteered for more bumps (which got me the free overnight) and I did get my status for the next year. And I ate a lot of those cheese crackers and drank lots of sodas. And ONLY left the airport for the motel that bump night for the free hotel (I would have been able to go home to sleep if I have not volunteer for the bump).

    It was FUN! I might do it again ... but pricing for flights is different now and I am NOT been that close to status recently.
     
  14. Sugarcubesea

    Sugarcubesea TUG Member

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    I like Southwest, but since my airport is a Delta hub, I can most always get a better deal on Delta
     
  15. Luanne

    Luanne TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    And I, for my own reasons, do not like Delta. I also don't like American. Luckily I do have other choices.
     
  16. DianneL

    DianneL TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    I love Southwest for all the reasons stated above by Luanne. And Southwest has many flights in and out of Nashville, both nonstop and connections. Easier to get to your destination out of Nashville on Southwest than any other carrier and usually for less money.
     
  17. JIMinNC

    JIMinNC TUG Member

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    I think it's not so much that we don't "get" Southwest as much as most of the benefits you cite aren't a real benefit for us:
    - I have no issue with the AA.com website and find it intuitive and easy to use as well.
    - We pay no baggage fees on either American or Delta due to credit cards from both and elite status.
    - Rarely do we ever have to change or cancel a leisure flight, so while this SWA benefit would be great if we ever did, it's not something that would really sway my carrier decision.
    - The nonstop issue is the biggest negative for us. SWA has less than 10 flights a day from Charlotte, and only flies nonstop to Chicago, Baltimore, Nashville, Dallas, and Houston. By contrast, American has over 650 daily nonstop flights from CLT to around 160 nonstop destinations all over the US, Caribbean, Mexico, and Europe.
    - At least in Charlotte, the times we've priced SWA, there was only modest cost savings versus AA. Certainly not enough to justify the more limited options and destinations.

    I suspect, though, if I were not at an AA hub city, and was forced to connect to most leisure destinations, I would probably view SWA as a more attractive option. Their passengers do sure seem to love them.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2019
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  18. pedro47

    pedro47 TUG Review Crew: Expert TUG Member

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    This thread is about what is keeping Southwest Airlines from flying to Hawaii?
     
  19. JIMinNC

    JIMinNC TUG Member

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    It has morphed a bit, hasn't it? :)
     
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  20. Luanne

    Luanne TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    Not unusual on TUG. :cool:
     
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  21. MULTIZ321

    MULTIZ321 TUG Member

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    Shutdown Stalls Southwest Airlines Plans to Begin Hawaii Service
    By Mary Schlangenstein/ Technology/ News/ Bloomberg/ bloomberg.com

    "Efforts by Southwest Airlines Co. to begin flights to Hawaii have fallen victim to the government shutdown.

    The carrier has done all it can to secure certification to begin service but can’t move forward without approval from the Federal Aviation Administration for extended flights over water, or ETOPS, the Dallas-based airline said in a statement Monday. Southwest set no new timeline for selling tickets or beginning Hawaii flights.


    “The groups within the FAA that oversee ETOPS authorizations are furloughed, and our next steps require their direct participation and oversight,” the carrier said.

    Southwest had expected to begin selling tickets for Hawaii flights in late 2018 and to start service this quarter. The carrier announced its Hawaii plans in July 2017....."


    Richard
     
  22. pedro47

    pedro47 TUG Review Crew: Expert TUG Member

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    Is this true or just a rumor that Miami Airport may have to shut down because of the federal government shutdown of furloughed employees.
     
  23. JIMinNC

    JIMinNC TUG Member

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    Not sure about the whole airport - that sounds like a false rumor - but it was reported over the weekend that MIA did have to shut down one concourse (concourse G, as I recall) to allow for TSA staff to be reallocated to the other checkpoints. And the issue isn't that the employees have been furloughed as I understand it. It is because some employees are calling in sick since they aren't getting paid anyway.
     
  24. Luanne

    Luanne TUG Review Crew: Veteran TUG Member

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    I don't remember which airports, but there have been a few who have shut down parts of the airport, like a terminal, due to the shortage of TSA workers. These are not the employees who were furloughed, but the ones who have been required to work without pay.
     
  25. davidvel

    davidvel TUG Member

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    For those that are interested, it is not just about approving a particular type of aircraft to fly the route. Southwest has plenty of such aircraft, but even more that cannot fly the route. The bigger issue is approval of the airline's entire operation plan, systems and procedures, down to the minutiae.

    This includes pilot, maintenance and other personnel training, daily procedural checks and balances, and a multitude of other operational issues. They need to be sure the right planes are flying the route (there have been instances when the wrong type of plane flew to Hawaii), the right crew are properly trained and flying, and that the company has iron-clad procedures in place to assure compliance.

    The planes themselves will do what you tell them to (most of the time...)
     
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