Am. Samoa Looks To Iron Out Hawaiian Airlines Mileage Program

admin's picture

Pacific Islands Development Program, East-West Center With Support From Center for Pacific Islands Studies, University of Hawai‘i

Governor discusses how to utilize credited mileage with airline

By Fili Sagapolutele

PAGO PAGO, American Samoa (The Samoa News, Dec. 23, 2015) – Gov. Lolo Matalasi Moliga’s Corporate Mileage Program initiative was the major issue the governor discussed with a Hawaiian Airlines delegation that was on island last week. The group, which included the airline’s executive vice president and chief commercial officer, Peter Ingram also met with local businesses during their two-day visit.

Asked about the major issues discussed during Lolo’s meeting with Hawaiian officials, the governor’s executive assistant Iulogologo Joseph Pereira said the major issue was the Corporate Mileage Program, which still has not been activated.

This is "because the protocols have not been established and Hawaiian has not reconciled its records to determine the correct of number of miles, which have been accumulated by ASG since the inception of the program," Iulogologo explained.

To facilitate the start of the program, he said Hawaiian informed the governor that one million miles have been credited to the ASG account and it can be used immediately once the procedures are set.

"Hawaiian apologized to the Governor for failing to properly account for all the miles accruing to ASG," he pointed out.

Iulogologo also said that the Mileage Program was the Governor’s Initiative to help defray the airfare for patients, youth attending colleges, and those who are impoverished and destitute.

Samoa News should point out that it was revealed during a Senate hearing three months ago that the hospital is not getting any free-tickets for off island referral patients on Hawaiian through the Mileage Program, although the hospital is provided a certain number of discount tickets through an agreement with Hawaiian for the referral program.

Iulogologo also says that the second issue, which is of importance and raised from ASG’s perspective is: a "guarantee of the lowest amount of miles" that Hawaiian can offer for a one-way ticket. In other words, will Hawaiian guarantee that the fare miles established through the "guarantee lowest amount of miles" will not change even during the peak season and Hawaiian will not turn down travel for a patient or other travelers using the Governor's Mileage Program.

At the meeting, the governor extended his appreciation to Hawaiian for the discount tickets given to LBJ Medical Center for patients referred to Hawai’i for treatment, according to Iulogologo.

Also at the meeting, Port Administration director Taimalelagi Dr. Claire Poumele requested cooperation from Hawaiian "to please use the equipment provided by ASG to make it easier for our people to enplane and deplane," Iulogologo said.

"Taimalelagi asked that if there are things that need to be done to meet Hawaiian specifications, please document those and said deficiencies will be corrected to the equipment (so it) can be used for the convenience of our people," he recalled of what happened at the meeting.

"This equipment was constructed upon instructions from the Governor to find a way to make it easy for our people to enter and leave the plane. The Hawaiian stairways are too steep for many of our people," he said.

The governor’s mileage program went into effect in Jan. 1, 2014 and the initiative deemed that frequent flyer miles earned by ASG employees — whose travel on Hawaiian Air is paid for by the government — would be deposited in an ASG Corporate Account overseen by the airline.

Meanwhile, Hawaiian is currently operating three extra flights to accommodate the holiday traffic. The first flight was last Wednesday, but it didn’t depart Pago Pago until the next day due to a late arrival from Honolulu.

The next extra-section is tonight and the third extra flight is Jan. 6, 2016.

Rate this article: 
No votes yet

Add new comment