Hawaiian Holdings, parent of Hawaiian Airlines, lost $138 million in the first quarter of 2024, though the company’s chief executive says incoming Boeing 787s and a new freighter operation are putting Hawaiian on track toward profitability.

The $138 million loss compares with Hawaiian’s loss of $98 million last year during the same period.

The Honolulu-based company’s first-quarter revenue rose 5.4% year on year to $646 million, while its expenses jumped 8.8% in one year to $794 million, it reported on 23 April.


Source: Hawaiian Airlines

Hawaiian Airlines placed its first Boeing 787 into service on 15 April

Notably, Hawaiian’s maintenance and repair costs surged 41% year on year, and expenses tied to wages and benefits jumped 8.3%. It also logged $9 million in legal fees related to Hawaiian’s anticipated acquisition by Alaska Airlines.

The number of passengers who flew Hawaiian remained flat year on year, at 2.6 million in the first quarter.

During the period, the carrier introduced new routes from Honolulu to both Salt Lake City and Sacramento, and ramped up its summer schedule with more flights between Honolulu and Austin, Boston, Las Vegas, Los Angeles and American Samoa. 

Looking ahead to the remainder of 2024, Hawaiian chief executive Peter Ingram says recent investments in Starlink in-flight internet services and in an air-freight partnership with Amazon, and the launch of its flagship 787 aircraft, have “begun to come to fruition”.

“I’m not going to try and look into the crystal ball and tell you what the timing is of returning to profitability, but I’m confident that we are moving a lot of things in the right direction,” he says.


Hawaiian operated its first scheduled Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner flight on 15 April, bringing to reality a long-envisioned plan to upgrade its widebody fleet. Hawaiian’s second Dreamliner is scheduled to fly next month, and the carrier anticipates receiving several more of the type by year-end.  

“My expectation right now is that we’ll have five [787s] by the end of next year,” Ingram says.  “There is some risk there. We do know that some of the 787 deliveries could slide a little bit based on reports” of Boeing slowing production.

The aircraft manufacturer’s pace of 787 deliveries has recently slowed amid supply chain issues and a company-wide focus on improved quality.

“We’re going to have to take a closer look at what our expectation is for 2025 over the course of the next several weeks, as we firm that up with Boeing,” Ingram says.

Hawaiian still has fleet flexibility thanks to its Airbus A330s, Ingram adds, noting that fewer than half of those will reach the end of their lease terms leading up to 2027, by which time Hawaiian expects to have received its full order of 12 Dreamliners. The carrier has 24 passenger-configured A330s, according to Cirium data.


Hawaiian also recently started operating its second A330 for Amazon’s Prime Air service, with plans for as many as seven freighters to be online before the end of the year. 

“The number of aircraft and the pace of deliveries has been moving around a little bit, driven by the pace at which Amazon has been able to get airplanes delivered from the vendor that is… reconfiguring the aircraft from passenger configuration to freighter configuration,” Ingram says. 

“I would caution that they may not all be flying by the end of the year because, during the peak period, our partner doesn’t necessarily want to introduce new lines of flying into the operation,” he adds.