Hawaii airports laying off 662 workers on tourism reopening day

Over 660 Hawaii airport workers will be permanently laid off on October 15, the same day that the state is reopening tourism. They work for HMSHost, …

Over 660 Hawaii airport workers will be permanently laid off on October 15, the same day that the state is reopening tourism. They work for HMSHost, an airport subcontractor that manages concessions, restaurants, Starbucks, bars, pantry, maintenance, etc. at Honolulu International Airport, Kahului Airport, and Lihue Airport.

The State of Hawaii is allowing this subcontractorto permanently lay off nearly 85% of its workforce in Hawaii. There areapproximately 780 HMSHost employees who work at these three airports. UNITEHERE Local 5 represents these workers and approximates that the company will bepermanently laying off 470 out of 550 workers in Honolulu, 140 out of 170workers in Kahului, and 52 out of 60 workers in Lihue.

According to the latest WARN notices issued by HMSHost on August 12, the company was planning on permanently laying off 505 workers in Honolulu, 161 workers in Kahului, and 57 workers in Lihue.

UNITE HERE Local 5 condemns the layoffs and callsout the State and hospitality industry leaders for claiming they want to reopentourism to bring jobs back, yet allowing for mass permanent layoffs at thestate airports to happen.

In August, UNITE HERE released a nationwide report on the handouts that HMSHost received since the onset of COVID-19. HMSHost was on track to receive $475 million in aid in the form of rent relief and other handouts. Despite the massive aid that local governments have provided to HMSHost, the company is still moving forward with mass permanent layoffs.

“In the 22 years that I have worked for HMSHost, Ihave never felt so disregarded as a human being. After putting almost all of myadult life into this company, they are laying us off even though it doesn’tcost them anything to keep us on and call us back in as business increases,”says Jeanine Ng, a server at The Local in Honolulu Airport.

“In the middle of a pandemic when we need healthinsurance most, HMSHost cut off our medical coverage in June. I’ve had to payout of pocket for my medication that I need to live. And now as tourism issupposed to be reopening, they are permanently laying us off and throwing usinto more uncertainty for no good reason,” says Laurie Ann Javierto, who hasworked as a cashier at the Old Plantation in Kahului Airport for 33 years.

Local 5 will continue to take action to helpfurloughed workers and push the state and industry leaders to get it right thefirst time and reopen tourism so that workers get back to work safely.

When Top Hotels in Hawaii Plan to Reopen

Contact a travel advisor to learn more or to book your future stay in Hawaii. Follow TravelPulse.

With Hawaii set to lift its 14-day visitor quarantine in lieu of a COVID-19 pre-travel testing program on Oct. 15, many of the destination’s hotels and resorts are announcing reopening dates, along with incentives and renovations to welcome guests back.

At the Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort, which is tentatively scheduled to reopen on Dec. 15., guests can take advantage of the Dream Away package, offering Hilton Honors members 20 percent off best rates for stays until March 31, 2021. Guests who are not members can save 15 percent off the best rates.

PHOTO: Hilton Hawaiian Village® Waikiki Beach Resort Alii Tower Exterior Dusk (photo via © 2019 Hilton)
PHOTO: Hilton Hawaiian Village® Waikiki Beach Resort Alii Tower Exterior Dusk (photo via © 2019 Hilton)

The Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa is set to reopen on Oct. 15 and is offering guests Hyatt’s Work From Home package, which includes standard guestroom or suite accommodations with the option to upgrade, a workspace that’s either a separate, private space or a complimentary second guestroom, daily food and beverage credit and more.

Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa
PHOTO: Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa. (photo via Hyatt)

Set for a Dec. 1 reopening, the Kaanapali Beach Hotel on Maui will showcase the results of the first phase of its $75 million renovation. The refurbishment includes a redesign to the Papaku South Wing and Kauhale Southeast Wings, a new beachfront restaurant Huihui and more.

Kaanapali Beach Hotel
PHOTO: Kaanapali Beach Hotel. (photo voa Kaanapali Beach Hotel)

Mauna Beach Resorts’ Mauna Kea Beach Hotel and Westin Hapuna Beach Resort on the Big Island, slated to reopen on Nov. 1 and Nov. 20, respectively, are offering guests lucrative savings options.

The Mauna Kea Beach Hotel features a 5th Night Free package, which includes waived resort fees, and a family promotion offering 50 percent discounts on a second room.

Mauna Kea Beach Hotel
PHOTO: Mauna Kea Beach Hotel. (photo via Mauna Kea Beach Hotel)

The Westin Hapuna is offering guests a Westin Hapuna Experience package, which includes 25 percent off a six-night stay plus 25 percent off beach rentals/activities, 25 percent off green fees and a 15 percent discount at the Meridia restaurant.

The Westin Hapuna Beach Resort
PHOTO: The Westin Hapuna Beach Resort. (Photo by Scott Laird)

The Montage Kapalua Bay, which is set to reopen on Oct. 15, unveiled the Spirit of Now package, providing guests with a $100 resort credit per room (up to $300) and a complimentary upgrade at check-in. With the package, deposits are not required at booking time and cancellation fees will be waived up to 48 hours prior to arrival.

Spa Montage Kapalua Bay
PHOTO: Spa Montage Kapalua Bay. (photo courtesy of Montage Kapalua Bay)

The Plantation Inn, an 18-room bed and breakfast located in Maui’s historical Lahaina Town, is scheduled to reopen on Nov. 15. During its closure, the property underwent a light refresh for returning guests.

The Plantation Inn on Maui
PHOTO: The Plantation Inn on Maui. (photo via The Plantation Inn)

The Prince Waikiki, scheduled to reopen on Nov. 1, is offering the Prince Your Way promotion, which features extended check-in and check-out times of 9:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m.; Book Now, Stay Later packages with 20 to 30 percent savings for bookings made 60 or 120 days in advance; and a Mini Matrimonies micro-wedding package featuring a ceremony on the resort’s Muliwai Deck with socially distanced seating for 24 guests and more.

Prince Waikiki
PHOTO: Prince Waikiki. (photo via Prince Waikiki)

Maui’s Wailea Beach Resort, which is set to welcome guests again on Nov. 1, is offering guests savings of 20 percent off stays of five nights or more and a complimentary quilting community activity. Quilts will be donated to local kapuna (elders) on the island. The property also unveiled a Work Anywhere Play Pass, which includes Sundeck accommodations, free Wi-Fi, supervised kids activities, curated experiences, business concierge, 20 percent off cabana rentals and more.

Wailea Beach Resort infinity pool
PHOTO: The infinity pool at the Wailea Beach Resort. (photo via Wailea Beach Resort)

Contact a travel advisor to learn more or to book your future stay in Hawaii.

Hawaii Tourism will not reopen as planned on October 15

There are more problems for Hawaii’s travel and tourism industry, and there are problems between the mayors and the Governor. Only the Island of …

There are more problems in paradise. There are more problems for Hawaii’s travel and tourism industry, and there are problems between the mayors and the Governor.

Only the Island of Oahu with Honolulu and Waikiki may reopen for tourism arrivals after October 15 as originally planned and ordered by Hawaii Governor Ige.

The Aloha State of Hawaii was planning to welcome visitors from the U.S. mainland without the requirement of a mandatory 14-day quarantine if a passenger provides a COVID-19 negative test done within 72 hours prior to arrival. Airlines had been getting ready to transport again visitors to Hawaii. United Airlines said such a test can be done hours prior to departure at San Francisco Airport for a $250.00 fee or prior by mail.

Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell had told eTurboNews on September 15 he prefers second testing after arrival but confirmed today that O‘ahu plans to participate in the State’s pre-travel testing program. Mayor Caldwell maintains a two test program would be preferable to the current option, but also understands the current restrictions on testing capacity.

Kauai Mayor Mayor Kawakami made this statement:

“We have not yet made a determination. Decisions must be deliberate and we can’t commit to plans we don’t fully understand. Our goal from the beginning has been to supplement the Governor and Lt. Governor’s statewide travel plan. The option to opt-out is a recent development. As we understand it, our proposal was denied in part because the state aimed for consistency across the board, so visitors would not be confused. How does the option to opt-out achieve that goal? If each county were to opt-out, where does that leave the statewide travel plan? We need more details on what an “opt-out” means for the counties, and whether that provides the option for us to implement a single-test post-arrival program.

“If we were to remain in the program, the Lt. Governor has committed to implementing enhanced testing, such as a surveillance testing program, and we look forward to hearing details on how that will be implemented on October 15.

“Our goal is not to extend a mandatory 14-day quarantine in perpetuity. Our goal is to keep our community safe while we take a phased, responsible approach to reopening. We believed we could do that by offering an enhanced second-test program.”

Hawaii Island Mayor Harry Kim said yesterday, he was opting out for the state’s pre-travel program starting October 15. It means anyone visiting Hawaii Island, also known as the Big Island of Hawaii will be required to quarantine for 14 days regardless.

eTurboNews reached out to Maui’s mayor Mike Victorino. A spokesperson for Mayor Mike Victorino said the mayor had not made a decision yet. Maui County also includes the Island of Molokai and Lanai.

In summary, as of now only the Island of Oahu with Waikiki Beach are a 100% reopening for visitors.

Lyft Offers Merrie Monarch Festival Discounted Rides

Lyft will offer discounted rides to and from Edith Kanakaole Stadium from April 21 to 27, 2019. Hula hālau, along with their family, friends and hula fans …

Lyft will offer discounted rides to and from Edith Kanakaole Stadium from April 21 to 27, 2019.

Hula hālau, along with their family, friends and hula fans from Hawai‘i and around the globe will travel to Hilo next week for the 56th Annual Merrie Monarch Festival.

Lyft encourages attendees to take advantage of its discounted rides to and from the event.

“It’s an amazing time in Hilo, when thousands visit to experience this world-renowned hula competition and all of the related activities,” said Rob Mora, market manager for Lyft Hawaii. “In an effort to provide a more convenient way of travel during this special celebration, Lyft will be offering discounted rides and will be available throughout Hilo for pick up and drop offs during Merrie Monarch week.”

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Lyft riders attending the Merrie Monarch festivities in Hilo can use promo code MMHILO for 20% off their rides to and from Edith Kanakaole Stadium from April 21 to 27.

In addition, Lyft riders traveling to Hilo for the festivities can use promo code FLYHILO for $5 off their ride to any airport, statewide, and upon arrival at Hilo International Airport from April 21 to 27.