Hawaiian Airlines is facing a big challenge due to a new rule from the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) that could affect its sales. 

Set to take effect on Oct. 30, this rule requires airlines to clearly tell customers upfront about fees for things like checked bags, carry-on bags, and changing or canceling flights.

New DOT Rule Challenges Hawaiian Airlines, Risking Sales

(Photo : Josh Withers on Unsplash)

Hawaiian Airlines Struggles with New Rule

Hawaiian Airlines, along with other major airlines, is worried that this rule could cause problems and confusion because the old technology they use, called Edifact, isn't good at sharing this fee information the way the DOT wants.

Travel Weekly revealed that the airline stated in a court filing that if they can't meet the DOT's requirements, they might have to stop using their current system for selling tickets through travel agencies, which would cost them millions of dollars each month. 

Kristina Larson, a top manager at Hawaiian Airlines, explained that their old system can't show specific details about a passenger, like if they are a frequent flyer or have a military status, which the new rule demands.

Hawaiian Airlines has joined other airlines in a lawsuit against the DOT rule, arguing that it is too demanding and goes beyond what the DOT can enforce. 

They have asked the court in New Orleans to dismiss the rule, claiming it will make it harder for customers to understand their options and lead to costly changes.

Meanwhile, the DOT has denied the airlines' request to delay implementing the rule, saying that the delay would hurt customers by keeping them from getting full price details when booking flights.

Related Article: United States DOT Plans to Make Air Travel Easier for Passengers with Disabilities

FAA Blamed for Hawaiian Airlines Mishap

Hawaiian Airlines has taken legal action against the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) following an incident that resulted in over $6 million in damages to an aircraft. 

According to PYOK News, the lawsuit, initiated in a California district court, centers on a mishap at Oakland Airport (OAK) where a set of mobile airstairs was propelled by jet blast into an Alaska Airlines Airbus A320, causing significant damage.

The incident unfolded on the night of July 21, 2021, when Hawaiian Airlines maintenance staff were instructed to perform an engine run-up. Due to ongoing construction, the usual enclosure for such operations was unavailable. 

Instead, the airport manager directed the engineers to a remote taxiway. However, when Hawaiian Airlines sought clearance from the FAA ground controller, they were told to remain where they were and proceed.

The aftermath was disastrous; the jet blast from the run-up sent debris flying into the nearby parked Alaska Airlines plane. 

Now, Alaska Airlines is demanding Hawaiian Airlines pay $6,275,368 for the repairs.

Hawaiian Airlines contends that the FAA should bear the financial responsibility for the damages, as their controller's guidance led to the unfortunate event.

This legal battle comes amid news from last December that Alaska Airlines intends to purchase Hawaiian Airlines in a deal valued at $1.9 billion, aiming to merge both carriers under one umbrella. 

The damaged Airbus, nicknamed 'Lady Boss,' was originally part of Virgin America before transitioning to Alaska Airlines and was sold off as Alaska moved towards an all-Boeing fleet.

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