Hawaiian’s first Airbus A330 arrives in Hawaii, will enter service on June 4

Copyright Photo: Ivan K. Nishimura. This interesting wide-angle view documents N380HA's arrival at HNL. The new airliner is named "Makalii".

Hawaiian Airlines (Honolulu yesterday (May 3) welcomed its fleet of the future to Hawaii – its first new, long-range Airbus A330-200 aircraft that will set the company’s course for growth and expansion.

The wide-body, 294-seat A330-243 registered N380HA (msn 1104) touched down at Honolulu International Airport at 10:49 a.m. on May 3. The wide-body airliner was piloted by Captain Robert Mixand Captain Mark Dawson. The 13-member flight crew was greeted by Hawaiian Airlines employees with fresh flower lei, Hawaiian music, and hula.

Mark Dunkerley, Hawaiian’s president and CEO who was among a crowd of employees greeting the plane’s arrival, said, “What a special moment for all of us at Hawaiian, to see more than three years’ planning and coordination come to fruition. This first A330 heralds a new era for Hawaiian, one of growth and new services for our customers.”

Hawaiian’s new A330 is scheduled to begin service on Friday, June 4, as Flight HA 2, departing Honolulu at 1:15 p.m. (1315) for Los Angeles.

Hawaiian took possession of the A330 on April 28 in a Hawaii-themed acceptance ceremony at the Airbusfactory in Toulouse, France attended by more than 200 Hawaiian Airlines employees and their guests. The aircraft was flown nonstop from Toulouse to Seattle on April 30 for scheduled modification work before making its flight into Honolulu this morning.

Hawaiian plans to introduce up to 27 new Airbus aircraft into its fleet by the end of this decade. Hawaiian is leasing three A330s that are joining the fleet this year, and has signed a purchase agreement with Airbus to acquire seven A330s (starting in 2011) and six A350XWB-800 (Extra Wide-Body) aircraft (starting in 2017), as well as purchase rights for an additional five A330s and six A350s.