Go! responsible for 81 percent of canceled flights from HNL

Go! responsible for 81 percent of canceled flights from HNL
Published: Jul. 5, 2013 at 10:18 PM HST|Updated: Jul. 6, 2013 at 1:25 AM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Go! Airlines reported 33 percent of its departures from Honolulu were delayed and more than five percent of its flights were canceled during the first four months of this year.

According to figures Go! supplied to the U.S. Transportation Department, 814 of its 2,453 flights from Honolulu were delayed from January through April of this year.

That's much higher than the average of all the airlines with departures from Honolulu during that same time period, which had 11 percent of their flights delayed.

The average length of the delays from Honolulu for Go! came to 66 minutes for inter island flights that last about a half an hour. That compared to the average delays of all airlines from Honolulu of 60 minutes, including those with much longer flights overseas.

"These are some of the explanations why they have not done well in the Hawaii market," said aviation historian Peter Forman, a retired TWA pilot who coordinates the commercial aviation program at Honolulu Community College. "These kinds of figures can deter customers," Forman added.

Honolulu Go! passengers who spoke to Hawaii News Now Friday did not have any complaints.  They like the airline.

"Because it's cheaper.  And I think they're reliable now.  They have learned a good lesson," said Terabata Groves, an Oahu resident who was flying to Maui with her son.

Karen Tarves, a visitor from Miami, was flying on Go! to Kauai with her son and daughter.

"We only fly like once a year and we usually go to all the islands and if Go has a better price, we usually go with them.  And it's been OK," Tarves said.

Go! reports that 133 of its Honolulu departures were canceled in the first four months of this year, accounting for 81 percent of the 164 cancellations of all Honolulu departing flights during that time.

The airline has said it has a fleet of five aircraft operating in Hawaii and some of them are temporarily withdrawn from service for heavy maintenance from time to time.

Email and phone messages left at the Arizona headquarters of Go! Airlines were not returned Friday.  A Hawaii News Now crew also left a message with the airline's check-in desk staff at Honolulu International Airport but did not receive a call or email in response.

Hawaiian Airlines has more than four times as many flights as Go! and flies to overseas destinations across the country and around the world. But in that same four-month time period, Hawaiian had only nine cancellations on outbound Honolulu flights, compared to Go! Airlines' 133 canceled inter island flights. And Hawaiian's percentage of delayed flights from Honolulu was five percent, compared to 33 percent for Go!.

"Go! is not competing anywhere near their competitors' records for on-time performance," Forman said.

Billionaire Larry Ellison, who has already purchased Island Air and the island of Lanai, is completing his takeover of Go! Airlines. Members of Hawaii's aviation community said they hope Ellison pumps some money into Go! to improve its on-time performance.

The first four months of last were much better for the on-time record of Go!, according to figures filed with the federal government.  The airline reported just nine percent of its Honolulu departures delayed and only 14 canceled flights from January through April of 2012.

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