13 Apr 2010

American Samoa pushes idea of direct Los Angeles flights

1:51 pm on 13 April 2010

American Samoa's Governor, Togiola Tulafono, is to promote the idea of direct flights between Los Angeles and Pago Pago to increase tourism.

The only airline linking American Samoa and the mainland United States is Hawaiian Air via Honolulu.

The governor will soon submit an application to the US Government to exempt American Samoa from a rule which prohibits a foreign carrier from flying between two US airports.

Togiola said his main aim is to find a carrier that will operate direct flights between Pago Pago and Los Angeles.

"If a tourist has to stop in Hawaii we are not a consideration anymore, there's just too many things to do in Hawaii, a lot of sunshine, a lot of sand, a lot of ocean. Everything that they can get here, is there. Except for the natural beauty of the islands, and the culture, things like that."

Togiola Tulafono says Air New Zealand expressed interest in flying to Pago Pago some time ago and Air Pacific is another possibility.