Interisle air fares increase

Aloha and Hawaiian boost
their prices by $10.50 each
way, citing mounting losses

Aloha and Hawaiian Airlines have increased their fares by $10.50 each way, citing losses in their interisland services.

New one-way fares of $77.50, $85.50 and $95.50 have replaced the previous price levels of $67, $75 and $85.

The higher prices apply to tickets purchased during May for travel starting June 1. For purchases starting June 1, the prices will drop back a little, as the federal government's security surcharge is lifted for the summer.

The summer levels will be $72, $80 and $90, including applicable taxes and fees.

Fare levels depend on seat availability at the time of the booking, with lower-cost seats selling out first.

Both airlines put a three-tier coach fare structure into effect at the start of the year, with the highest price applying to trips that were not booked in advance.

In March they dropped the advance-booking requirement for the lower fares, choosing instead to adjust fares according to demand and capacity.

Hawaiian also added $15 per ticket for trips to Molokai or Lanai and for some trips involving a stop along the way. Hawaiian has lowered that surcharge to $10.

"Costs are up, traffic is down and if we are going to provide the frequent interisland service everyone wants, we're going to have to raise fares," said Stu Glauberman, an Aloha Airlines spokesman. "We are still not making money interisland."

Security costs are still a factor and Aloha is trying to get to a break-even point in its interisland business, he said.

Aloha lost $43 million in 2002, but has not disclosed how much of that came from its interisland business and how much from its mainland-Hawaii and Hawaii-Pacific business.

Hawaiian Airlines lost $58 million last year.


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