Hawaiian, Southwest at war with everything: flights, pilots, fuel, etc.


There is no doubt about it. The ultimate battle for flights to Hawaii is underway, and it is about to continue and intensify. This between the airline Hawaiian Airlines and the future Hawaiian giant Southwest Airlines.

Jeff, BOH Editor: “Southwest learned all the tricks of the Hawaii playbook directly from Hawaiian Airlines. It’s a life-and-death match between Hawaiian and Southwest.

The Battle of the Flights.

1. Hawaii’s two major airlines compete for a range of routes.

Southwest is limited by its limited-range 737 aircraft. Although they have wide coverage, their cross-country routes beyond Las Vegas or Phoenix require a connection. Hawaiian is constrained differently by a limited flight network. Although they have some codeshare with JetBlue, it still limits the number of options they have to distribute passengers beyond these nonstop flights.

Other airlines, including Legacies and Alaska, also compete, but they pale in comparison.

2. The Southwest recently retreated to the mainland toward Hawaii while doubling over the interisland.

In August, they cut Los Angeles to Kauai and Kona, Phoenix to Kauai and Kona, Sacramento to Kauai, Kona and Maui, and San Diego to Kaua, Kona and Maui. This has reduced their mainland service by nearly 40% from when they operated 37 daily flights, down from the 23 currently flying.

At the same time, Southwest has increased inter-island service and has decided to sell every seat on every flight for just $39 through the end of 2022. If that’s not apparent, that’s way below their cost to provide the service. In many cases, Hawaiian has matched this price on their starts that coincide with Southwest.

3. These are the best places where competition means the cheapest flights to Hawaii.

Competition is hottest on flights departing from Las Vegas, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, Oakland, Phoenix, San Diego and San Jose.

3. The service sub-battle.

These airlines offer different things beyond just getting you from point A on the mainland to your vacation spot in Hawaii B.

A week ago, we traveled with Hawaiian and with Southwest to share our thoughts on the two airlines’ performance in inter-island service. We were completely surprised with the results; if you haven’t seen them, maybe you are too. They each have a unique brand, and there’s a lot to be said for both.

Read: Flight reviews: Hawaiian vs. Southwest showdown

You won’t be surprised to hear that we were still in the air this week, and you’ll soon see more surprising comments from us on flights between the West Coast and Hawaii.

The Battle of the Pilots.

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Airlines are now embarking on a battle of female pilot teams, not to be outdone when it comes to flights, routes, services or fuel.

This week, Hawaii introduced the first Tongan mother-daughter pilot team. It is an industry long dominated by men. One of the Hawaiian flights that BOH flew with Alaska Airlines this week also coincidentally featured a female co-pilot.

Captain Kamelia Zarka and her first officer daughter Maria Zarka pilot the Hawaiian Airlines Boeing 717 on an inter-island flight. The team greeted guests, posed for selfies and sought to encourage young girls to achieve their dreams.

“Flying for Hawaiian Airlines with my daughter, side by side in the cockpit, was a dream come true for me. I always knew Maria would be a fantastic pilot – she was always brilliant and professional – but sitting next to her as she flew the plane with such skill and ease always blew me away” , said Kamelia.

Kamelia has worked at Hawaiian as a flight attendant since 1992 and became a pilot in 1999. Maria joined HA from Republic Airlines earlier this year.

Southwest and Hawaiian Battle with Mother/Daughter Pilot Teams

Alongside Hawaiian, Captain Holly Petitt and First Officer’s daughter Keely Petitt have just become the first mother-daughter pilot team for Southwest.

Holly Petitt started out as a flight attendant before deciding to become a pilot. She has worked for SWA for 18 years. As a teenager, her daughter decided to follow in her mother’s footsteps and become a pilot. Keely was offered a scholarship by Southwest in 2017 and said, “Southwest was always the end goal for me. There really was never any other option.

The two flew as a team from Denver to St. Louis in July for the first time and were the first mother-daughter duo in Southwest.

The battle for power: SAF and electric airliners.

In recent weeks, Hawaiian Airlines and Southwest Airlines have said they are investing in sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). American airlines are moving rapidly on this issue. Southwest’s CEO said, “SAF is key to decarbonizing the aviation sector.” In contrast, the Hawaiian CEO said, “This is the first step in what we hope will be a long and productive relationship that reflects both parties’ unwavering commitment to the environment and to these islands we call home. we”.

The airline industry is obviously a major consumer of fuel. In 2019, that was 90 billion gallons.

Read: Southwest and Hawaiian battle for lead | Game-changing SAF.

As for electric flights in Hawaii, those are also on the horizon, and Hawaiian is moving ahead with those. No doubt we’ll hear from SWA about it, and it probably won’t take long.

Read: Hawaiian Air + Mokulele Both are planning a 100-seat electric SeaGlider.

Which is your choice: Hawaiian or Southwestern?

They both clearly have distinct cultures and are very successful in attracting customers.

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