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Passengers suffer long delays on 2 Honolulu flights

By Michael Tsai

LAST UPDATED: 9:19 a.m. HST, Nov 28, 2011

Hundreds of weary travelers finally left for their destinations after separate mechanical problems led to 65 passengers getting bumped from a Continental Airlines flight to Denver on Saturday, and left passengers of a Hawaiian Airlines flight from Portland to Honolulu waiting half a day Sunday to get off the ground.

Continental passengers scheduled to leave Honolulu for Denver at 11 p.m. Saturday were told that the aircraft scheduled to make the flight was unavailable due to mechanical problems and had to be replaced with a smaller jet.

The 65 passengers who were left without a seat were offered hotel vouchers and assistance in making new travel arrangements.

“I’m just upset about how it was handled,” said Angela Stegman, who had to wait until Sunday night to fly out of Honolulu. “They knew all day that they were going to have to bump people but they didn’t say anything until just before the flight. Our luggage was already on the plane.”

On Sunday, Hawaiian Airlines Flight 25 from Portland to Honolulu was delayed more than 12 and a half hours due to a problem with the system that controls the plane’s flaps.

“This being a holiday weekend, there weren’t other flights available to accommodate this many passengers, so we had to wait for the first available airplane,” said Keoni Wagner, Hawaiian’s vice president of public affairs.

The flight was to have departed Portland at 10:15 a.m., arriving in Honolulu  at 2:15 p.m. Instead, it left at 10:56 p.m. with a scheduled arrival of 1:51 a.m.

Wagner said the airlines offered each affected traveler a travel credit “as a gesture of regret” and provided meals and hotel vouchers for anyone who needed them during the wait.

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