Hawaiian Airlines announced further expansion on Sept. 13, saying it will begin year-round, nonstop, daily flights between Honolulu and Fukuoka, Japan, in April pending approval from the Japanese government. The new service would be the fourth Asian destination added by the airline in 18 months; Hawaiian inaugurated flights to Tokyo in November 2010, followed by Seoul, South Korea, service in January and Osaka, Japan, in July.
“Demand for our services in Japan from Tokyo and Osaka has been extremely strong, and we are responding to similar demand for Hawaii from the travel community in Fukuoka,” Mark Dunkerley, Hawaiian’s president and CEO, said in a statement. “Our new Fukuoka flights will expand Hawaiian’s reach into an entirely new region of Japan, while providing a substantial boost to Hawaii’s visitor industry.”
The Hawaii Tourism Authority expects the new Honolulu-Fukuoka service to generate $154 million in visitor spending annually.
“The new direct flight is outstanding news for Hawaii’s visitor industry,” Mike McCartney, HTA president and CEO, said in a statement. “This will be the only year-round, daily, scheduled service to Hawaii from Fukuoka. … It is another sign that Japan is on its way to recovery and there is increasing demand for travel to Hawaii.”
Delta Airlines plans to begin seasonal service between Honolulu and Fukuoka on Japan’s Kyushu Island on Dec. 28.