File photo.

Hawaiian Airlines announced today it would begin daily nonstop service to Maui out of Long Beach Airport on March 9, adding to its existing daily service to Honolulu.

“Maui is a popular vacation destination for Southern California travelers, and we are delighted to make it more convenient for our guests to visit the Valley Isle while enjoying our Hawaiian hospitality onboard nonstop flights from Long Beach Airport,” Brent Overbeek, Hawaiian’s senior vice president of revenue management and network planning, said in the announcement.

The air carrier first came to Long Beach in 2018 with one daily nonstop flight to Honolulu. The airline picked up a second daily slot vacated by JetBlue Airways in April but has left it unused due to the pandemic.

Hawaiian’s Honolulu service has been suspended for months but is slated to resume Dec. 16. However, under the state’s regional stay at home order, nonessential travel is currently restricted to slow the spread of COVID-19 as cases and hospitalizations continue to spike statewide.

“2021 is going to be a special time to experience Hawai‘i, and we can’t wait to welcome onboard guests from our newest cities,” said Peter Ingram, president and CEO of the airline.

The Maui announcement comes less than one month after Southwest Airlines, now the largest carrier at Long Beach Airport, announced daily service to Honolulu. Southwest is expected to reveal more routes out of Long Beach in the coming days.

As with its Honolulu flights, Hawaiian will serve its new route with the Airbus A321neo, which is one of the quietest and most efficient commercial aircrafts on the market.

“We are thrilled Hawaiian Airlines chose to offer LGB travelers another nonstop destination to the islands,” said Airport Director Cynthia Guidry. “We encourage the public to always check current travel guidelines and, when the time is right, our passengers can choose from a wonderful lineup of leisure travel getaways.”

Editor’s note: This story has been updated to include comment from Airport Director Cynthia Guidry.

Brandon Richardson is a reporter and photojournalist for the Long Beach Post and Long Beach Business Journal.