Oakland selected to launch new Southwest Hawaii flights
East Bay airport first in line for carrier’s West Coast – Hawaiian island routes
Oakland, Calif. – May 4, 2018: Oakland International Airport was revealed as one of the first Mainland U.S. Airports to welcome Southwest Airlines’ much-anticipated new service to Hawaii.
The airline announced earlier this year that it planned to launch service to Honolulu (island of Oahu), Kahului (Maui), Lihue (Kauai) and Kona (Hawaii's “Big Island"), setting off industry-wide speculation about which mainland cities would receive the service.
Oakland, a Southwest Airlines focus city, is among those announced yesterday.
Port of Oakland Director of Aviation, Bryant L. Francis, said, “We are extremely pleased at the announcement that Oakland will be among the first U.S. mainland airports to operate Southwest’s new service to Hawaii. Southwest already serves more than two-thirds of the travelers at OAK as the Airport is approaching a record number of passengers and now offers a record number of nonstop destinations.
“Offering these new nonstop options to Hawaii further solidifies Oakland’s presence as a major west coast long-haul gateway, and we look forward to more to come. Southwest continues to be a tremendous partner in providing the service, quality, and value that our customers have come to love and expect in Oakland. We look forward to learning when service is to commence at OAK and to which islands,” concluded Francis.
In a statement by Southwest CEO, Gary Kelly, the airline indicated its plans to begin Hawaii operations within the calendar year. Kelly stated in January, “We are pleased with the progress made thus far to obtain authorization from the Federal Aviation Administration for Extended Operations (ETOPS) to operate between the mainland and the Hawaiian Islands later this year. … Our goal has been from the outset to be flying by the end of the year. … Achieving that goal is not totally within our control. In terms of the work that we do control, we are right on target.”
Recent airport reports indicate that OAK passenger traffic was up 6% in March 2018, including a 61% increase in international traffic.
About Oakland International Airport
Oakland International is the fourth busiest airport in California and second busiest in the San Francisco Bay Area. Serving over 13 million travelers annually, OAK is the closest airport to the region’s top business and tourism venues. It is also the closest airport for most local residents.
Oakland’s air service roster to over 60 nonstop destinations is offered on 14 different airline brands – seven of which operate with OAK as their sole gateway into the San Francisco Bay region.
The vision of Oakland International Airport is to offer customers a world-class experience and be the airport of choice for Bay Area residents and visitors alike. OAK is operated by The Port of Oakland, which also oversees the Oakland seaport and 20 miles of waterfront. Together with its business partners, the Port supports more than 73,000 jobs in the region and nearly 827,000 jobs across the United States.
For up-to-the-minute departure and arrival information, airport maps, and details on shopping, dining, transportation, and more, visit www.oaklandairport.com. Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.
Keonnis R. Taylor