Allegiant Airlines expands Hawaii plans

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Allegiant Airlines has added four more cities to its plans for service to Hawaii, three of which have no current direct connections to the islands.

In mid-November Allegiant plans to add seven weekly flights to Hawaii from Santa Maria, California; Stockton, California; Eugene, Oregon; and Bellingham, Washington.

Allegiant already intends to fly to Honolulu from Fresno and Las Vegas starting in late June.

Santa Maria is north of Santa Barbara and has a slightly larger population. Stockton is in California's Central Valley. Neither Santa Maria nor Santa Barbara has ever had Hawaii service, and the closest flights to Stockton today are those from Sacramento. Service from Santa Maria begins Nov. 17 and from Stockton the following day.

Eugene is the second largest urban area in Oregon, and home to a Hawaii expat community, and there was speculation that Eugene might be an Allegiant target from the first reports, two years ago, of the carrer's Hawaii ambitions. Service from Eugene begins Nov. 17.

There was also speculation at the time that Allegiant would fly to Hawaii from Bellingham, but Alaska Airlines got there first and has built a niche business carrying Canadians to their Hawaiian vacations. They drive to Bellingham to avoid the higher Canadian air fares, caused by steep airport taxes. Allegiant plans to fly from Bellington to Kahului as well as Honolulu. The first Honolulu flight from Bellingham will be Nov. 14 and the first to Maui will be the following day.

"We anticipate the new service will be very popular," said CEO Andrew Levy.

Allegiant is a discount carrier that bundles air fare sales with hotel and rental car bookings.

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