Local residents bearing costs of HAL expansion

Hawaiian Airlines’ arbitrary charges for ticketing are holding the local population hostage.

When it costs more than $300 to fly round-trip from Maui to Hilo for local folks, something is wrong.

On a recent day, the cheapest ticket from Maui to Hilo was more than $160, with other times being well over $200 on the same date for the cheapest level of service. I checked the next day and the very same ticket was $125.

Since the demise of Aloha Airlines, Hawaiian has no real competition. In its quest for expansion into more and more far-reaching foreign and domestic non-Hawaii markets, the cost of this is on the backs of everyone flying interisland.

It’s time to look at re-regulating Hawaiian. And I, as well as many others, am requesting our state representatives to look at taking over the free-for-all ticketing practices this airline is so cavalier in flaunting. The questions need to be answered regarding how much of the local cost of tickets is subsidizing Hawaiian’s far-reaching hunger for more revenue and ever increasing out-of-Hawaii expansion. We should not have to pay the burden of this monopoly’s expansion, and there should be two-tier pricing for interisland flights – one for tourists and one for locals.

Don’t hesitate to contact your state senators and representatives to let them know you back getting better-costing airline tickets for locals.

Sean Lester