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Southwest Starts Second Phase of Hawaii Flights

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Southwest Airlines’ expansion into Hawaii is starting its second phase.

The Dallas-based carrier has been aggressive with new routes between Hawaii and California, starting last year with flights from Oakland and San Jose. The strategy proved effective as Southwest limited its usage of large airports such as San Francisco International and Los Angeles International, and was able to dramatically lower prices from the mainland to the islands.

In fact, with 38 daily flights now available from Oakland, San Jose, Sacramento and SFO, Southwest increased the available seats to Hawaii by 30 percent while cutting fares an average of 17 percent across all carriers.

The airline will now fly between both San Jose and Oakland to Lihue, Kauai and Kona, in addition to Honolulu.

Flights to Lihue will be four days a week, and to Kona will be three times a week.

Southwest’s next expansion will come in April. It will begin San Diego-to-Maui service on April 14 and San Diego-to-Honolulu on April 20.

As the San Francisco Chronicle pointed out, Southwest CEO Gary Kelly said during a third-quarter earnings call last year that he expected the success to keep rolling.

“By March 2020, we plan to offer 12 daily departures from California to Hawaii, and 34 daily departures among the Hawaiian Islands,” Kelly said. “We are very pleased with the strength of customer demand for Southwest service in Hawaii, and it will continue to be a focus for growth in 2020.”

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TSA Bans TikTok Videos From Agency Social Media Accounts

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The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) announced Sunday employees would no longer be permitted to use TikTok to post on behalf of the agency’s social media accounts.

According to the New York Post, the decision to ban the use of the Chinese owned video-sharing app comes after Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer voiced concerns about potential national security issues.

TSA officials said several employees who managed the agency’s social media accounts had used the TikTok platform to create videos that were shared with followers, but the agency has told its staff they are no longer allowed to use the video-sharing app on TSA accounts.

While the TSA never had a TikTok account or posted content directly to the platform, the federal agency’s employees posted videos on TSA social media accounts that featured the social media platform’s logo in the corner.

Senator Schumer began advocating for the agency to stop using TikTok after he called on intelligence officials to investigate the platform to protect national security. He followed up his comments with a letter to TSA Administrator David Pekoske on Saturday, which sparked the ban.

When asked about the decision, Schumer defended his position and cited a Department of Homeland Security rule prohibiting TikTok on agency devices. The Department of Defense and the State Department have also banned employees from posting on the social media platform.

“Given the widely reported threats, the already-in-place agency bans, and the existing concerns posed by TikTok, the feds cannot continue to allow the TSA’s use of the platform to fly,” Schumer said in a statement.

“These videos sure do make you chuckle; they’re creative,” the senator continued. “But China might be laughing at these TSA postings for very different reasons, and that should concern us and it’s why I am urging the TSA to find a different platform, and cease its use of TikTok now.”

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