It was the beginning of 2021 and behind us was a year so uniquely challenging that we have nothing to compare it to in Hawaiian’s 92-year history. Fast forward to 2022 and we can’t help but be proud of our teams' dedication to holomua (progress) during another year of adversity
We marked our 17th consecutive year as the most punctual U.S. carrier, published our second Corporate Kuleana Report on environmental, social and governance (ESG) initiatives, and our U.S. mainland market made an unprecedented comeback, which allowed us to operate our largest July schedule ever from that geography.
“You connected people with aloha when they needed it most, and you triumphed over many difficulties with creativity and enthusiasm. Our progressive recovery is the result,” Peter Ingram, president and CEO of Hawaiian Airlines, told employees in an end-of-year message.
As we reflect on what we’ve learned and how we’ve grown, please join us in recognizing the moments worth celebrating.
Mālama for Hawai‘i nonprofits
Our loyalty members continued to prove their generosity by raising nearly 8 million miles through the HawaiianMiles Charity program, which includes 2.3 million miles raised during our special Giving Tuesday promotion. We matched 6 million miles, resulting in a total year-end donation of 14 million HawaiianMiles for 14 local nonprofits.
Restoring – and growing – our network
While the pandemic strained our operations, it has not dampened our positive outlook for the future. Restoring and growing our domestic network faster than we had expected is something that we are extremely proud of.
We expanded our U.S. West Coast service with the launch of Kahului to Long Beach and Phoenix (seasonal service), and Honolulu to Ontario, California. We also entered new cities, launching the first nonstop service between Honolulu and Austin, Texas and Orlando, Florida.
In addition, we made progress restoring our international network, resuming nonstop flights between Honolulu and South Korea, Japan, Australia, American Samoa and Tahiti.
A new era of travel (pono)
We furthered our commitment to educating our guests arriving in Hawai‘i on how to safely and responsibly enjoy the islands by debuting a new in-flight video. The five-minute Travel Pono video launched in September and airs before landing on all inbound transpacific flights.
Guests learn from five Hawaiian Airlines crewmembers – including a firefighter, volunteers for search and rescue operations and marine mammal protection, and a cultural practitioner – who share their expert advice on ocean and hiking safety, conservation of endangered species and the environment, and cultural and community best practices.
To cap off the year, we also announced a partnership with the Native Hawaiian Hospitality Association (NaHHA) and travel2change (T2C) to sponsor their first statewide cohort in the Kaiāulu Hoʻokipa Impact Studio program. “We believe that the future of the visitor industry in our home state lies in building a more sustainable and equitable tourism economy that drives economic diversification and resilience and programs like this one are an important step toward that future,” said Avi Mannis, senior vice president of marketing at Hawaiian Airlines, in a press release.
A summer of appreciation
Last summer, our employees were surprised with locally made snacks and messages of appreciation as our new Mahalo Van – a nod to Hawaiʻi’s legendary Manapua men – made its rounds across the company.
The Hawaiian Airlines Purpose and Values committee launched The Summer Appreciation Pop-Ups in early July to mahalo each workgroup – from cargo to guest service agents, mechanics, crewmembers and corporate teams, among others – who have worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic. Our maintenance team, with the help of longtime partner Pow! Wow! Hawai‘i, spent over 180 hours transforming an unused company shuttle into a colorful display of gratitude. The Mahalo Van continues to operate today and share its aloha throughout our ʻohana.
Kōkua for Afghan refugees
In September, dozens of our crew members came together to operate a series of charter flights under the Civil Reserve Air Fleet (CRAF), a U.S. Department of Defense program that enlists commercial airlines to augment airlift during emergencies that exceed the military’s capabilities, to help relocate thousands of Afghans escaping the Taliban regime
Over six days, we operated 13 charter flights with two of our wide-body Airbus A330 aircraft and welcomed more than 3,000 Afghans arriving from Europe at Philadelphia and Dulles international airports and transported them to the safety of military bases in Indiana, New Mexico, Texas and Wisconsin.
“This was the most touching and moving flight experience I have had in my 53 years of flying. I have been truly blessed, rewarded and fortunate to have been a representative of Hawaiian and Hawai‘i in this great and heartwarming movement,” reflected Maydell Morgan, a Hawaiian Airlines flight attendant in a blog post.
Inspiring health and wellness, with a Valley Isle twist
We kicked off our second annual Holoholo Challenge during a period of the pandemic when community and personal wellness was needed most.
The virtual fitness challenge inspired 8,333 participants worldwide to exercise and track their progress along new Maui-inspired routes. Together, they ran or walked close to 498,000 miles, swam nearly 8,000 miles, and cycled over 88,600 miles. Over 2,800 participants also joined the Holoholo Challenge Facebook Group, posting recipes, tips and stories, making new friends, and motivating others to stick together and finish strong.
Athletes were able to donate to their choice of two local nonprofits: Special Olympics Hawaiʻi or The Maui Farm. Together they raised $26,452 for Special Olympics Hawaiʻi's year-round sports training and competitions for athletes with intellectual disabilities, and $25,069 for The Maui Farm’s farm-based, family-centered programs that teach essential life skills for self-sufficient living.
Backing the next generation of Hawaiʻi artists
February in Hawaiʻi is Mahina ‘Ōlelo Hawai‘i (Hawaiian language month), a special celebration of the revitalization of a language once on the brink of extinction. In honoring the month, we partnered with Keola Rapozo to introduce his exclusive Ōhāhā design collection to our airline’s online logo store. Ōhāhā, meaning flourishing, fully developed and healthy, stemmed from Rapozo’s commitment to designing with a sense of place and perpetuating ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi.
"There’s a Hawaiian proverb that says, ‘I ka 'ōlelo nō ke ola, i ka 'ōlelo nō ka make,’ or ‘In language there’s life, and in language there’s death.’ Words are powerful, and we can choose how to use our language. For me, I’m using my language and layering it with my interpretation of ōhāhā to build kiʻi (imagery); to share moʻolelo (stories) through kiʻi; to leave this space better for my daughters and the next person,” Rapozo shared in a blog post on the collection.
All proceeds – a total of $10,000 – were donated Ke Kula ʻo Samuel M. Kamakau Laboratory Public Charter School, a language immersion school on Oʻahu’s windward (eastern) side that teaches and shares ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi through traditional and contemporary methods.
Aside from our Mahina ‘Ōlelo Hawai‘i partnership, Hawaiian Airlines, in partnership with the Bishop Museum, celebrated POW! WOW! Hawai‘i’s 10th anniversary by sponsoring the POW! WOW! The First Decade: From Hawai‘i to the World, which ran from May to September. To further the celebration, we worked with a selection of the collective’s artists to design and launch commemorative on Shop.HawaiianAirlines.com. A total of $10,000 in proceeds raised from merchandise sales were donated to various organizations that support arts education for Hawai‘i children.
Furthering our support of Hawaiʻi’s local entrepreneurs and tastemakers
As the state’s largest and longest-serving carrier with roots as a small air tour operator, we strive to support local businesses each year in new and creative ways – from our HawaiianMiles Marketplace to products featured inflight.
In March, we announced the husband-and-wife team Wade Ueoka and Michelle Karr-Ueoka, owners of Honolulu’s MW Restaurant and Artizen, as our first executive chef duo, and debuted a new roster of Featured Chefs to design our inflight menus.
Our efforts to share Hawaiʻi products with the world have strengthened through a partnership with local business accelerator Mana Up and Hawaiian Airlines® Bank of Hawaii World Elite Mastercard®. As the exclusive airline partner of Mana Up, we were proud to jointly present Meet the Makers, a virtual, seven-month-long event series on Hawaiian Airlines and Mana Up’s Facebook pages to celebrate nine Hawai‘i entrepreneurs and showcase their products.
To close the year, we teamed up with Local Motion Hawaii, a HawaiianMiles marketplace partner, in October to support Nā Kama Kai. Every purchase made with a Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard® at the surf gear retailer throughout the month was matched, resulting in a total donation of $10,000. The two companies also worked closely together to make an exclusive co-branded t-shirt with a design that embodies surf, travel and ocean safety.