HONOLULU, Nov. 11, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Hawaiian Airlines, the pioneering carrier of the Pacific and one of the nation's longest-serving carriers, today is celebrating its 85th anniversary of continuous service for the islands.
Hawai'i's first interisland passenger service was launched on Nov. 11, 1929 as Inter-Island Airways, with a flight from Honolulu to Hilo, which took a total of one hour and 40 minutes. The first flight to Kaua'i was made the following day and all the Hawaiian Islands were soon receiving air service on a regular basis. During this time, the first inflight treat offered to passengers was a stick of Wrigley gum to relieve ear pressure. The 85-year-old airline is reviving that in-flight amenity today by handing out Wrigley's Doublemint® gum, which is also celebrating its 100th anniversary this year, along with a commemorative postcard and historic logo stickers to more than 12,000 passengers on all of its neighbor island flights.
Additionally, Hawaiian Airlines has also published a special commemorative book highlighting 85 years of its history and legacy which will be available for sale online at Shop.HawaiianAirlines.com in late November.
Winners of Hawaiian Airlines' social media contest series will be given free rides throughout the day on the airline's original airplane, a 1929 Bellanca CH-300 Pacemaker, which was restored in 2009 in celebration of the company's 80th anniversary.
"We've come a very long way since 1929, and being able to celebrate 85 years of continuous service is an exceptional achievement in itself for Hawaiian Airlines," said Mark Dunkerley, Hawaiian Airlines president and chief executive officer. "We owe thanks to our more than 5,000 dedicated employees, to those now retired from the company and to our loyal customers who have supported us over the years. We look forward to many more milestone celebrations as we continue to grow and diversify our service."
Hawaiian Airlines' 85th anniversary has been devoted to giving back to the community. In September, the airline unveiled a memorial wall at Kahului Airport honoring Capt. James Bertram Hogg, the pilot whose name was used for the airport's three-letter code (OGG). The event kicked off a three-month-long celebration that continued with an all-day community event in early October at the 'Imiloa Astronomy Center of Hawaii in Hilo, the airline's first destination. On Nov. 8, Hawaiian Airlines also showcased all of its flight attendant uniforms dating back to 1943 with a fashion show at HONOLULU Fashion Week.
Throughout the month of November, Hawaiian Airlines Team Kōkua will be participating in statewide community service projects on the islands of Hawai'i, Maui, O'ahu and Kaua'i, restoring agricultural and historical sites.
Looking Back at Hawaiian Airlines' 85-Year History
On Nov. 11, 1929, Inter-Island Airways (the company changed its name to Hawaiian Airlines in 1941) launched Hawai'i's first-ever scheduled interisland air passenger service using two Sikorsky S-38 amphibian propeller planes that carried eight passengers and two crewmembers, and had a top cruising speed of 110 MPH.
Along with being Hawai'i's first commercial airline, Hawaiian Airlines' 85-year history of service has featured several other notable achievements, including:
- Introducing airmail and air cargo service to the Hawaiian Islands in 1934.
- Becoming America's first federally certified air cargo carrier in 1942.
- Introducing Hawai'i's first aircraft with pressurized passenger cabins in 1952.
- Introducing Hawai'i's first interisland jet aircraft in 1966.
- Becoming the nation's first airline to operate a commercial flight with an all-female flight crew in 1979.
- Being the first Hawai'i-based airline to offer scheduled service between Hawai'i and the U.S. Mainland in 1985.
Today, Hawaiian Airlines' route network encompasses six of the eight Hawaiian Islands, as well as 11 International and 11 U.S. Mainland destinations. Hawaiian Airlines operates a fleet of 51 aircraft – 18 Boeing 717-200 jets for interisland flights in Hawai'i; 11 Boeing 767-300 and 19 Airbus 330-200 wide-body jets for transpacific and international service; and three ATR-42 for its new turbo prop service 'Ohana by Hawaiian that launched earlier this year.
Hawaiian Airlines will have three more A330s joining the fleet by the end of 2015. By the end of year 2020, the airline plans to have 22 A330s total and 16 new narrow body A321 NEO aircraft. The airline will begin taking delivery of six new A330-800neo aircraft in 2019.
About Hawaiian Airlines
Hawaiian® has led all U.S. carriers in on-time performance for each of the past 10 years (2004-2013) as reported by the U.S. Department of Transportation. Consumer surveys by Condé Nast Traveler, Travel + Leisure and Zagat have all ranked Hawaiian the highest of all domestic airlines serving Hawai'i.
Now in its 85th year of continuous service, Hawaiian is Hawai'i's biggest and longest-serving airline, as well as the largest provider of passenger air service from its primary visitor markets on the U.S. Mainland. Hawaiian offers non-stop service to Hawai'i from more U.S. gateway cities (11) than any other airline, along with service from Japan, South Korea, China, Australia, New Zealand, American Samoa and Tahiti. Hawaiian also provides approximately 160 jet flights daily between the Hawaiian Islands, with a total of more than 200 daily flights system-wide.
Hawaiian Airlines, Inc. is a subsidiary of Hawaiian Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: HA). Additional information is available at HawaiianAirlines.com
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SOURCE Hawaiian Airlines
Alison Croyle, (808) 838-3886, Alison.Croyle@HawaiianAir.com or Huy Vo, (808) 838-5479, Huy.Vo@HawaiianAir.com