Allegiant bullish on Hawaii growth

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Low-cost carrier Allegiant Air says its new flights to Hawaii have been "nicely profitable" and is bullish about new Hawaii services beginning later this year.

The Las Vegas-based carrier launched its first flights to Hawaii in June with Boeing 757 aircraft, and will add more services in November and in early 2013. While the Hawaii service has been "nicely profitable", Allegiant's president Andrew Levy says that the Hawaii flights are still a "small contributor" to Allegiant's overall departures.

The airline expects systemwide capacity to grow by between 17% to 21% in the fourth quarter, and most of this growth will be attributed to Hawaii and Florida, says Levy.

Allegiant will launch five new non-stop routes from the US mainland to Hawaii in November. It will serve Honolulu from Bellingham, Washington; Eugene, Oregon; Santa Maria, California and Stockton, California, as well as serve Maui from Bellingham.

The five new routes are showing strength so far, says Levy.

By February 2013, Allegiant will serve nine US mainland cities from Hawaii. Earlier this week, it confirmed it will scrap its planned non-stop service between Monterey, California and Honolulu, which had been due to begin in November.

"We killed it because it wasn't performing," says Levy today, adding that the demand for the service was "so far off from where we expect it to be".