Island Air announced on Thursday its plans to restore service to Kaua‘i, with six daily round-trip flights between Honolulu and Lihu‘e Airport effective March 15, subject to government approval, according to company officials.
“Island Air’s return to Kaua‘i with service between Lihu‘e and Honolulu is great news! This will create local jobs and contribute to our local economy as well as provide another interisland travel option for our residents and visitors,” Kaua‘i Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr. said in a press release.
The airline plans to celebrate its return with special “Welcome Back” fares.
Having served Kaua‘i since 2004, Hawai‘i’s second airline suspended its Lihu‘e service in June 2015 as part of a comprehensive effort to restructure its operations. To further support its successful turnaround and plans for expansion, the airline recently announced it was selling a controlling interest in the company to two Hawai‘i investor groups managed by local investment firm PacifiCap and its founder Jeffrey Au.
“Recognizing that for many local people interisland travel is a necessity and not a luxury, this is an important first step in our mission to benefit our local community in Hawai‘i by providing more seat availability and more options for interisland travel,” Au said.
Pending U.S. Department of Transportation review and approval of the sale, the airline is being overseen by a transition team comprised of PacifiCap’s Au, current Island Air CEO Dave Pflieger and former Island Air executive and Kaua‘i native, Les Murashige.
“We couldn’t think of a more fitting way to demonstrate our new direction and commitment to create a strong second airline for Hawaii than to restore service to Kauai and offer local residents and visitors an even greater choice in air travel,” Pflieger said.
Island Air plans to celebrate its return to Kaua‘i by offering a “Welcome Back” fare sale starting last Thursday through Sunday, Jan. 24. The “Welcome Back” fare for a one-way flight between Honolulu and Lihu‘e will start from $63 (subject to availability) for travel between March 15 and May 31.
“Having grown up on Kaua‘i and returning home often to visit family, I deeply appreciate the importance of having access to interisland travel options,” Murashige said.
In addition to providing additional seat capacity, Island Air’s return to Kaua‘i is expected to create approximately 32 airport-related jobs on Kaua‘i and O‘ahu.
Founded in 1980 as Princeville Airways, the company was renamed Island Air in 1992 and has been serving the islands of Hawai‘i for 35 years.
Visit www.islandair.com or call (800) 652-6541 for more information.