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Allegiant Travel Company has signed a forward purchase agreement to acquire six Boeing 757s in order to launch flights to Hawaii.
Based in Las Vegas, the firm plans to take delivery of the aircraft and place them in service beginning in the fourth quarter of 2010, with additional planes added through the first half of 2012.
Allegiant expects to spend between $75 and $90 million acquiring and preparing the fleet for service.
"Hawaii is the most prominent U.S. leisure destination currently un-served by Allegiant, and our small city customers have been requesting this service," said Allegiant chairman Maurice Gallagher, Jr. "We are very optimistic about our ability to exploit the large third party ancillary revenue opportunity we believe exists in Hawaii. We expect the sale of hotels, rental cars and many attractions and activities popular with Hawaii visitors will provide a very meaningful contribution to the success of the service."
Allegiant links travelers in small cities to world-class leisure destinations such as Las Vegas, Phoenix, Los Angeles, Orlando, Tampa/St. Petersburg and Fort Lauderdale. While the 757 is a new aircraft type for the company, Allegiant president Andrew Levy said the program is consistent with its existing business model.
"This transaction will enable Allegiant to extend to Hawaii its strategy of serving large leisure destinations from smaller cities with no existing nonstop service," said Levy.
Hawaii Tourism Authority spokesman David Uchiyama called Allegiant's announcement "exciting news for our state." Over the past two years, HTA has worked with Allegiant and attended its annual conference after it expressed interest in entering the Hawaii market.
"These flights will allow for more convenient direct access to Hawaii from the western region of the United States," said Uchiyama.
Allegiant Travel Companywww.allegiantair.com