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Japan Air to restore daily flight, but will suspend 8 round-trips in May

By Dave Segal

LAST UPDATED: 5:39 p.m. HST, Apr 18, 2011

Japan Airlines will restore a daily flight between Narita and Honolulu on Monday following a 19-day suspension but plans to eliminate eight round-trip flights in May because of reduced demand following the March 11 earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

Typically, JAL flies six daily flights to Honolulu -- three from Narita, and one each from Haneda, Kansai International Airport in Osaka, and Nagoya. JAL dropped one of its three Narita flights on April 6 with the suspension scheduled to go through Sunday. 

However, that flight will resume again Monday to coincide with the start of Golden Week, which runs from Sunday through May 9. 

Mike Hayashi, manager of administration for JAL at Honolulu Airport, said today that the airline will suspend round-trip flights on May 10, 11, 13, 14, 17 and 22 for one of its Narita-Honolulu routes and on May 12 and May 18 for another Narita-Honolulu route. However, Hayashi said on some days during Golden Week that JAL will operate charters and could have as many as seven daily flights.

When JAL is operating at full schedule, it brings to Hawaii about 1,475 air seats a day for the six daily flights. Five of the airline's flights are on 235-seat Boeing 767s while a 300-seat Boeing 777 is used for the Haneda flight. Hayashi said from May 9-31 that JAL plans to use the smaller Boeing 767 for the Haneda flights.

Hayashi said the airline has not announced its plans for the Honolulu-Narita route beyond May. He also said there is no further word yet on how many JAL employees have accepted the company's offer for unpaid voluntary leave during May and June. due to the reduction of flights companywide.

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