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Alaska Air challenges competition in Bellingham-Hawaii routes

Post by John Gillie / The News Tribune on June 27, 2012 at 2:50 pm |
June 27, 2012 2:50 pm

Alaska Airlines announced new four-times-weekly from Bellingham to Maui today. The new flights will begin Nov. 8.

In announcing the new route, Alaska will challenge Allegiant Airlines which announced Maui service from Bellingham in May. Allegiant’s service begins Nov. 14.

Alaska already flies from Bellingham to Honolulu. Allegiant plans to begin its Bellingham-Honolulu service in November.

The Bellingham market attracts passengers not only from northern Washington but also from the nearby Vancouver, B.C. area.

Alaska began its Bellingham-Honolulu service after it heard reports that Allegiant would begin a similar service once it acquired aircraft with the range necessary to fly to the islands.

Allegiant bought used Boeing 757s but didn’t begin Hawaiian service immediately. The airline had to equip its planes for long overwater flights and train its crews for that service.

Alaska is based in SeaTac. Allegiant has its headquarters in Las Vegas. The airline specializes in connecting smaller cities with resort destinations frequently with less-than-daily service.

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