JUST SAYING NO. A group calling itself Citizens
for Competitive Air Travel presented to Gov. Ben Cayetano a
petition bearing 20,000 signatures against the proposed merger of
Hawaiian and Aloha airlines. The group opposes the merger because
they fear it will create a monopoly on interisland air service,
forcing prices up and service down. "When there's only one game in
town, guess what they're going to do?" said Kevin Jones, a member
of the group and a frequent business traveler in the islands. A
spokeswoman for Turnworks, the company attempting to merge the two
airlines, said the company would not comment on the petition.
STAR-CROSSED: Norwegian Cruise Line's Norwegian
Star moved its Lahaina port call on Maui to the other side of the
island at Kahului through May 3, citing "lack of sufficient
shore-side tender support." Passengers at Lahaina have complained
that the wait to get ashore takes too long. The line will offer a
free shuttle from industrial Kahului to picturesque Lahaina for
those who feel they are missing out. The Norwegian Star, which
sails among the Hawaiian islands on a weekly basis, previously
changed ports on the Big Island from Kona to Hilo through the
remainder of the winter for weather reasons.
CONTINENTAL AIRLINES added a second daily
flight to Honolulu from Houston, bringing another 1,645 seats a
week into the market, according to the airline. The eight-hour
flight will be on a 767-400 aircraft.
TRAVELTIME of San Luis Obispo, Calif., was
named the travel agency of the year for 2002 by the Oahu Visitors
Bureau. According to the OVB, Traveltime increased its Oahu sales
by 30% in 2001 over 2000. Traveltime beat out four other agencies
that qualified for the top spot: The Travel Shop of Portland, Ore.;
Peak Travel in Calif.; Patterson Travel of Calif.; and Travel
Lifestyles of Houston.
THE OHANA REEF LANAI finished a $1.3 million
renovation to its lobby and guest rooms. The lobby now has a new
floor and furniture while guest rooms have new wallpaper,
carpeting, beds, bedspreads, drapes, sofa beds, and televisions.
All the rooms have kitchenettes. Rates at the hotel start at $89 a
night per room.