October 15, 2008
Mokulele Airlines to Expand Network With Inter-Island Jet Service
Mokulele Airlines announced today that beginning November 19, 2008 the airline will offer 70-seat Embraer 170 jet service between Honolulu, Kona and Lihu'e. The service is made possible through a new airline service agreement the company executed with Indianapolis-based Republic Airways.
The airline service agreement provides for Republic Airways' subsidiary, Shuttle America, to operate up to four Embraer 170 jets configured with six first-class and 64 coach seats. "I'm very excited about this partnership with Republic Airways, an industry leader whose award-winning service is trusted by six network airlines," said Mokulele Airlines CEO Bill Boyer. "Passengers will love the spacious cabin and comfortable seating of the E170. Republic Airways is widely known throughout the airline industry as a quality operator that delivers safe, reliable and passenger-friendly service. I am extremely confident that the people of Hawai'i will appreciate the expanded network choices and quality service this agreement makes possible."
"We welcome this agreement between Republic Airways and Mokulele Airlines," said Governor Linda Lingle. "This is very good news for the economy while providing the people of Hawai'i an additional choice in inter-island service. This agreement also means new job opportunities, and that is very welcome news for our residents."
The new partnership opens up job opportunities for displaced aviation industry professionals who lost their jobs when several airlines shut down operations on the islands earlier this year. "We encourage former Aloha Airlines and ATA employees to apply for jobs with Mokulele," Boyer added.
Senator Daniel Inouye was quick to send his congratulations to both parties. "Expansion of inter-island travel will help to stimulate the economy in many ways. It's good news for small business, for families and for job creation," said Inouye.
The Embraer 170 features 6'7" ceilings, wider seats and aisles, and a layout that ensures that every seat is either a window or an aisle. The plane's larger windows offer a better view to passengers, and its increased overhead storage capacity means that more people will enjoy the convenience of simply walking on and walking off with a carry-on bag. All Mokulele Airlines Embraer 170 flights will board and deplane from jet bridges.
"This is great news for our local economy and the airline industry nationally. Thanks to Mokulele Airlines and its partner, Republic Airways, more people will be employed and we'll have increased air service to the neighbor islands," said Mayor of Honolulu Mufi Hannemann.
Mokulele Airlines is a locally owned and operated inter-island commuter airline based in Kailua-Kona, Hawai'i. Founded in 1998 as Mokulele Flight Service Inc., it was acquired by current President and CEO, Bill Boyer, in 2005. Today, the airline operates scheduled U.S. carrier service both independently and through participation in a code-share agreement. It also offers tour flights as well as inter-island cargo service. Mokulele Airlines currently has a fleet of seven 208B Cessna Grand Caravans and operates 56 daily departures to seven cities in Hawai'i. Mokulele Airlines markets and sells tickets directly to passengers via its website www.mokuleleairlines.com.
Republic Airways Holdings Inc. owns Chautauqua Airlines, Republic Airways, and Shuttle America, employs 4,400 aviation professionals and operates 233 regional jets. The firm currently flies under partner brands such as AmericanConnection, Continental Express, Delta Connection, Midwest Connect, United Express and US Airways Express. In total, Republic services approximately 1,200 flights daily to 99 cities in 34 states, Canada, Mexico and Jamaica. Republic Airways was the winner of Air Transport World's 2008 Regional Airline of the Year Award. Republic is also the world's largest operator of the Embraer E-jet family of aircraft, and is publicly traded on the NASDAQ stock exchange under the ticker symbol RJET.