Hawaiian Air lifts fares as fuel costs fly higher
The carrier says it must increase ticket prices to help offset oil bills
Hawaiian Airlines, citing higher fuel costs, said yesterday it will boost its lowest one-way fare for interisland flights by $10 and raise its fuel surcharge for mainland travel by $35 each way.
Both increases, which take effect Tuesday, mean that Hawaiian's lowest interisland fare will increase to $64, while mainland-Hawaii travelers will see the one-way fuel surcharge go to $100 from $65. For most of Hawaiian's non-U.S. routes, the fuel-surcharge increase will range from $35 to $55 each way.
Passengers traveling to or from the Big Island and those booking over the telephone to any island will pay an additional $5 under a previous change that went into effect May 1.
"Fuel prices are now 100 percent higher than a year ago, so unfortunately just like every other business that consumes oil, we must raise our fares to help offset some of this increase," Hawaiian spokesman Keoni Wagner said.
Wagner said the increased price of fuel has added almost $100 million to the company's operating expenses in just the past three weeks.
Mesa Air Group, whose interisland carrier go! prices its lowest interisland fare at $59, said it is monitoring the situation.
State Tourism Liaison Marsha Wienert said she believes Hawaiian's increases are justifiable and that it cannot absorb all of the increased cost of fuel without passing it on to customers.
"We want to make sure that they're healthy so they continue to fly here," she said.