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Thursday, 18th December 2008
In Japan Travel News,

Japan-Alaska flights to resume following Palin intervention

Winter flights between Japan and Alaska have resumed following the intervention of Alaskan governor and former Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin.

Landing rights for Japan Airlines had been denied around six weeks ago due to staffing shortfalls, reports USA Today.

Governor Palin contacted the US department of homeland security asking them to reconsider the decision.

Patricia Eckert, a trade specialist at the governor's office, commented: "We recognised right away the importance.

"There is tremendous economic impact at a time of year when it's most valued."

Meanwhile, Jillian Simpson, director of travel, trade and international marketing for the Alaska Travel Industry Association, said it was "critical" that landing rights were secured.

"It's obviously extremely important to winter tourism in Alaska and the Interior."

Flights between Japan and Alaska are estimated to be worth around $4 million (£2.6 million) a year.