It is with mixed feelings that I bid a fond aloha to Aloha Airlines.
As everyone here in Hawaii is aware, Aloha Airlines is no more. At least not the passenger service part that flew the Hawaiian skies for the past 60 years. All that remains now is the cargo service and a host of memories, good and bad.
I have a couple of friends who were working for Aloha and for them I am sorry. The one bright spot is that there has never been a better time to be looking for a job in Hawaii. Unemployment is the lowest in a decade and employers are begging for warm bodies to hire.
And, of course, I am always sad to see any homegrown business die, especially in the shadow of a continent-based interloper. As someone who tries to patronize local businesses wherever possible, it is a shame to know that more of our local dollars will be heading out of the state.
However, it is hard for me to be too sad because I haven't flown on Aloha for a long time. In fact, I have flown go! more times than Aloha in the past two years. And truth be told, I benefitted a lot this past year from the low airfares as I travelled back and forth to Hilo once a week. Believe me, at the current prices I would not have been able to do that!
So at the end of the day, it is the end of the runway for Aloha and a new era in Hawaii for interisland travel. Let's just hope that our friends can find new opportunities and that Hawaiian can really pick up the slack.