Published on March 4th, 2019 | by William Charles110
Southwest Hawaii – [Flights Now Bookable]
Update 3/4/19: Flights are now live for purchase with cash or points. Hat tip reader DP and to r/churning.
Update 2/27/19: FAA has now given Southwest Airlines formal approval for flights to Hawaii. Southwest has stated they will release details surround ticket sales and inaugural flights in the coming days.
Update 2/26/19: According to USA Today CEO Gary Kelly told employees the FAA has given Southwest Hawaii a verbal ‘thumbs up’ regarding the test flights completed. It’s expected formal approval will be given soon and then tickets will go on sale.
Update 2/23/19: According to The Star Advertiser Southwest has now completed enough validation flights. We also have some idea on the snacks Southwest will be offering on these Hawaii flights (via VFTW).
Update 2/4/19: On Tuesday (2/5/19) Southwest will do the first validation flight to Hawaii. More details here.
Update 1/3/19: According to an internal memo seen by the Chicago Business Journal on December 21st the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) notified Southwest that the Extended Operations (ETOPS) procedures and manuals we submitted for review have been approved.
Update 10/29/18: File this under interesting but useless, Southwest signs are now up at Maui airport. Hat tip to reader ER.
Update 10/26/18: During yesterday’s earnings call Southwest shared some additional information regarding Hawaii. Interesting quotes below (emphasis ours):
- “…speaking of Hawaii, it’s our expansion focus for next year. And just subject to the timing of our ETOPS certification from the FAA, our goal continues still to be to sell tickets at the end of this year and operate flights early next year.“
- “Our schedule is currently published through early June 2019 and they exclude expected Hawaii flying. You can see that excluding Hawaii our January through May year-over-year ASM growth is modest.”
Update 08/16: Beat Of Hawaii has spoken to Andy Watterson, SWA Executive Vice President and Chief Revenue Officer, based on this conversation they are expecting flight announcement and ticket sales to start in October to November and flights to Honolulu/Maui to begin shortly thereafter. I’d recommend reading their full post for additional information.
Update 05/03/18: Southwest has announced that they will offer non stop service from:
- Oakland (OAK)
- San Diego (SAN)
- San Jose (SJC)
- Sacramento (SMF)
They also intend to provide inter-island routes as well.
Update 04/26/18: Southwest has announced they will serve the following airports in Hawaii:
- Honolulu, HI (Oahu)
- Kahului, HI (Maui)
- Kona, HI (Island of Hawaii)
- Lihue, HI (Kauai)
We don’t have specific routes yet, but all initial routes will be out of California according to Beat of Hawaii. They are also still quoting a launch date of December 2018 or early 2019.
Southwest Airlines have just announced that they will be entering the Hawaiian market on Twitter. They did this by replying to a tweet from back in 2008. At the moment details are extremely scarce, but we will update this post as they come in.
You heard that right. We’re thrilled to share our intention to bring our world-famous hospitality and value to the Hawaiian Islands! pic.twitter.com/NoVNXlsSH7
— Southwest Airlines (@SouthwestAir) October 12, 2017
Things to note:
- They need approval from the FAA for extended flights over open water [ETOPS (Extended Twin Operations)]
- No routes announced yet
- Plan to sell tickets starting in 2018, but first flights might not launch until 2019. ““We wouldn’t be so bold as to say we’ll start flying in October or November or July of 2018 and not go through the FAA process,” “We know we’ll get through the FAA process in time to sell tickets next year, but until the FAA gives us better indications of the authorization timeline, we’re not going to speculate and put a date out there. This has been a long time coming so there’s no particular reason for us to rush it. For us, it’s more important to do it properly than doing it a certain date.” [Chief Revenue Officer Andrew Watterson]
- Boeing 737 MAX 8 (175 seat plane) will be used for the service as speculated
- According to this LA times article Southwest will fly most of its routes from California to Kauai, Honolulu and the island of Hawaii (quoting Andrew Watterson in that article again). California confirmed here again
- We anticipate fares will drop – Andrew Watterson
Hat tip to reader @bhuynh08