Southwest Is Ready to Start Selling Those Cheap Tickets to Hawaii — but It Can’t Until the Government Shutdown Ends

Dublin, Ireland
Family jumping for joy at a beach. (photo via iStock / Getty Images Plus / LightFieldStudios)
a blue and white plane sitting on top of a runway: Southwest Airlines

If you’re dreaming of jet-setting on that Hawaii getaway on Southwest, you’ll have to delay your trip.

Not only has the federal government shutdown raised concerns about the TSA and other airport staff becoming shorthanded due to workers calling in sick or quitting their jobs, it looks like passengers on Southwest are also going to be postponing their dream Hawaiian vacations.

According to Bloomberg, Southwest Airlines, which had hoped to begin service to Hawaii from several California airports in the first quarter of 2019, has to gain certification and approval from the Federal Aviation Administration for extended flights over water, or extended-range twin-engine operational performance standards (ETOPS).

Unfortunately, all of the airlines’ efforts to secure approval have been halted due to the federal government shutdown, since workers who oversee these operations have been on forced, temporary leave.

“The groups within the FAA that oversee ETOPS authorizations are furloughed, and our next steps require their direct participation and oversight,” the carrier said in a statement, Bloomberg reported.

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