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Major Update in Hawaiian Air Freight News

The big news of the week for Hawaiian air freight and Hawaiian logistics in general is the announcement by Aloha Air Cargo that they will discontinue regular air freight service between LAX and Honolulu as of June 1st, 2024.

Implications for Shipments from Los Angeles to Honolulu

This change in service by Aloha Air Cargo will initially push a transition to the only remaining Hawaiian air cargo freight service, Pacific Air Cargo, which offers daily service (Monday through Saturday) between LAX-HNL.

Given the limited range of dedicated air freighters servicing the Hawaiian Islands, the Hawaiian logistics industry is anticipating several ramifications to this reduction in air freighter service to Hawaii.

  • Reduced overall air freight capacity to Honolulu can result in challenges to book space on flights without prior allocations. In other words, air freight may be delayed due to lack of space
  • Overall increase of air freight shipments via passenger flights to Hawaii will increase on airlines including American Airlines, Delta Airlines, United Airlines, Alaska Air and Hawaiian Airlines
  • Shipments with hazardous materials (DG) such as dry ice may be bumped or delayed, owing to relatively strict dry ice limitations set by IATA for passenger flights

How Will Aloha Air Cargo’s Flight Cancellation Impact the Market for Hawaiian Air Freight Services

The basic economic law of supply & demand is expected to impact rates for air freight from Los Angeles to Honolulu, which in turn will push some air freight to ocean consolidations or parcel couriers such as UPS or Fedex. There are some concerns that a single-cargo-carrier model and cartelization of air forwarding services could result in significantly higher rates that will be felt throughout the Hawaiian supply chain.

How Can Shippers Prepare for the Change?

Perishable shipments with extremely short shelf life, such as fresh produce, will likely need to prepare to absorb or pass-through rate increases. However, there are viable options to for shippers that have any flexibility in their transit times.

  • Evaluate alternate air freight carriers, including passenger airlines, and understand limitations for shipping DG or other hazmat on passenger flights so you can plan accordingly.
  • Consider the potential to shift your supply chain over to ocean freight via coloader or consolidation. This would potentially render tremendous savings on transportation while ensuring a more regular and reliable shipping schedule.

About Mar Pacific / GFS Aloha

Mar Pacific is the food-focused division of Global Freight Solutions, Inc. Combined with GFS Aloha, the GFS Division for Hawaii logistics, Mar Pacific offers a full range of multi-temp logistics and transportation solutions to the Hawaiian Islands including air & ocean freight consolidation, air freight forwarding, and LCL ocean freight. Mar Pacific even offers SQF Certified food grade storage and fulfillment for Hawaiian companies seeking to maintain readily-accessed buffer inventory on the West Coast. If you’re looking for a solution to the change transport markets to Hawaii, Mar Pacific has a full range of options for you to consider. Please contact [email protected] for more information.