The journey from rumors that Allegiant Air was to add Boeing 757-200s during the summer 2010 to their fleet to now receiving ETOPS and Flag Carrier Status status from the Federal Aviation Administration has been long.
Last summer, it was a let down for Allegiant, when the FAA gave them authorization to fly the new aircraft type, but they would not give the airline ETOPS certification to fly over the water to Hawaii. Over the past year, Allegiant has been flying a few 757s on routes in the continental US to gain experience. That experience is finally paying off and starting at the end of this month, the airline will start service to Honolulu, followed by Maui in November. Allegiant’s non-stop service plan to Honolulu:
Las Vegas ’“ begins June 29
Fresno, Calif. ’“ begins June 30
Bellingham, Wash. ’“ begins November 15
Monterey, Calif ’“ begins November 16
Eugene, Ore. ’“ begins November 17
Santa Maria, Calif. ’“ begins November 17
Stockton, Calif. ’“ begins November 18
Allegiant will also offer nonstop air service to Maui from:
Bellingham, Wash. ’“ begins November 14
’œThis is an important day for Allegiant,’ Andrew C. Levy, Allegiant Travel Company President, said. ’œObtaining ETOPS and Flag Carrier status not only clears the path for our new service to Hawaii, but also opens up potential international opportunities and will play an important role in our company’s future growth. Our operations team worked long and hard to ensure the completion of this certification and we thank them for their dedication in achieving this important goal.’
Currently, Allegiant operates a fleet of 58 MD-80 aircraft and four Boeing 757-200s. They still have two additional 757s that are being leased. Allegiant plans to put one 757 into service during fourth quarter 2012 and the second first quarter of 2013.
Allegiant is still planning to grow and is looking at other route options. Previously Levy has stated that the airline is looking at the possibility of flying to Canada, Mexico and even South America.