The new uniforms to be worn by more than 1,800 employees system-wide are the product of a year-long collaborative effort among line employees and managers of the company aimed at having them ready in time for Hawaiian’s 80th anniversary on November 11.
“Uniforms are an important expression of a company’s identity, and Hawaiian’s identity is its people. That’s why I am so pleased with our new look – it is a perfect reflection of the modern Hawaiian Airlines employee,” said Mark Dunkerley, Hawaiian’s president and CEO. “It conveys their confidence and pride in their professionalism, as well as their respect for our history and the Hawaiian culture, with a contemporary sense of classic style.
“As Hawaiian marks its 80th year, we are in many ways welcoming a new era at our company. Being the preeminent carrier of Hawaii with a new fleet of aircraft and exciting opportunities on the horizon, we feel a heightened sense of obligation to represent the best of our island home to the rest of the world. This new look is an outward expression of our belief in the future at Hawaiian,” Dunkerley said.
Hawaii designer Emma Howard incorporated the input from employees in creating the new uniform’s print design, drawing inspiration from the Hawaiian word makahiki, which resulted from combining the words for “flight” and “movement.” Design elements in the new uniforms feature:
- The star grouping Makali‘i, whose ascension in late October and early November (the period of Hawaiian’s founding in 1929) signals the start of makahiki, a time of rejuvenation in the traditional Hawaiian calendar.
- A petroglyph of Lono, the Hawaiian god of clouds, the sea, and productivity.
- The fish opelu and akule, both of which were traditionally caught during the period of makahiki.
- The bird noio, because of its importance to Polynesian voyagers who knew they were approaching land when it was seen.
The most noticeable change in the new uniforms is the color palette. Azure – representing the color of Hawaii’s ocean and sky – and gray are now the dominant colors, with Hawaiian’s traditional purple appearing as an accent color.
A central objective of the company’s employee-driven uniform committee was to give the uniforms a more sophisticated, forward-looking appearance, while retaining a distinctive, evocative image in a world of navy colors favored by other carriers.
“We wanted something that was timeless and classic with a print design that would be identifiable as being not only from Hawaii, but uniquely Hawaiian Airlines,” said Kim Meyer, a 19-year flight attendant and member of the company’s uniform committee.
About Hawaiian Airlines
Hawaiian is the nation’s highest-ranked carrier for service quality and performance in 2008 in the 19th annual Airline Quality Rating study. Hawaiian has also led all U.S. carriers in on-time performance for each of the past five years (2004-2008) and has been an industry leader in fewest misplaced bags during that same period (#1 from 2005-2007, #2 in 2008) as reported by the U.S. Department of Transportation. Consumer surveys by Condé Nast Traveler, Travel + Leisure and Zagat have all ranked Hawaiian as the top domestic airline serving Hawaii.
Hawaiian will mark 80 years of continuous service for Hawaii on November 11, 2009. Hawaiian is the state’s biggest and longest-serving airline, as well as the largest provider of passenger air service to Hawaii from the state’s primary visitor markets on the U.S. mainland. Hawaiian offers nonstop service to Hawaii from more U.S. gateway cities (10) than any other airline, as well as service to the Philippines, Australia, American Samoa, and Tahiti. Hawaiian also provides more than 160 daily jet flights within the Hawaiian Islands.
Hawaiian Airlines, Inc. is a subsidiary of Hawaiian Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: HA). Additional information is available at HawaiianAirlines.com.