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Good Day Hawaii, Aloha Australia

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Photo by Thiru Murugan via Flickr

As California says goodbye to Aloha Airlines tonight, a new service to Australia from Los Angeles International Airport is on the horizon. Officially being announced today, Virgin Blue Airlines' offshoot, V Australia, will begin non-stop service from Australia to Los Angeles starting in December. The signing of the open-skies agreement this afternoon makes this possible. Before, there were flight restrictions between the two countries.

"The open skies agreement lifts all restrictions on U.S. and Australian airlines and opens up the lucrative market to carriers other than United Airlines and Qantas Airways, which have dominated flights between the two countries for several years," says the Daily Breeze. "The deal is scheduled to be signed this afternoon by U.S. Transportation Secretary Mary Peters and Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd."

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Meanwhile, the last flights for Aloha Airlines land tonight in California. Aloha already stopped LAX service, but kept a limited number of flights to smaller airports including John Wayne and San Diego. Competition with go! Airlines, who provides extremely cheap fares to the island state, are part of the reason.