UH has a new travel partner

After nearly 20 years, the UH athletic department is getting a new travel partner.

JTB Hawaii, whose bid recently was accepted, will be handling travel arrangements for all the UH teams. JTB Hawaii takes over on July 1.

The change ends Panda Travel’s association with UH athletics, a partnership that began after former Gov. Ben Cayetano solicited sponsors for the football program.

Panda staffed an office in the athletic department to quicken travel arrangements. Through the years, the Panda agents — Bianca Tokumoto, Lori Figueroa, Lavana Francisco and Corene Tsang — also volunteered to assist in game-day operations. Those videos of football coaches commenting soon after the end of road games? Lavana shot the videos using a media relations director’s cell phone.

“Panda has been a great partner for nearly two decades,” athletic director David Matlin said in a telephone interview. “Their impact on student-athletes and coaches has been difference making. The entire staff of Panda has been great friends with the athletic department, and we appreciate everything they’ve done.”


  1. islandman May 22, 2018 8:44 am

    Thanks Panda

  2. Manoa Mist May 22, 2018 9:51 am

    Thanks Panda for all the great things you’ve done. Now get out and don’t let the door hit ya where the Good Lord split ya.

  3. Chicken Grease May 22, 2018 10:15 am

    Japan Travel Bureau will be handline UH athletics’ mostly donestic flights.

    Let’s think about this.

    And JTB HQ is in Waiks? Good luck with parking UH athletics. Quite a change from being able to just walk over tonscrutinize travel arrangements.

    Away we go 🙄 ✈️

  4. Chicken Grease May 22, 2018 10:16 am

    * handling

  5. Da Punchbowl Kid May 22, 2018 10:40 am

    Will JTB have an office in the athletic department? Were bid offers done previously? If Panda has been with UH for 20 years, were they the best bidder previously? If so, how often?

  6. Warrior Dave May 22, 2018 11:11 am

    Wow that’s huge news. In Panda Travel I trust. Good luck going forward.

  7. BigWave96744 May 22, 2018 11:53 am

    I don’t think Panda was located in the Athletic Department before they won the contract. Having an office in Waikiki is irrelevant.

  8. BigWave96744 May 22, 2018 11:56 am

    JTB also has their own ground transportation that can accommodate both Home and Visitors for all UH sports on island

  9. islandman May 22, 2018 5:04 pm

    Oregon St gets another UH coach. Basketball asst.coach Marlon Stewart to OSU as Dir. of Basketball Operations.
    Also, UH Dir of Operations Todd Okeson is leaving for a place to be determined, after 2 years here ( per McInnis).

  10. suckkabooya May 23, 2018 3:06 am

    Probably not profitable enough for them to “Sponsor” Hawaii Athletics anymore. I think the NCAA (with the urging of Congress maybe?) should give this isolated and one time geographically important State a realistic chance to be competitive with a fair and unbiased (in terms of travel cost issues) system. There has to be a solution somehow, someway.

    The Hawaii Exemption was a great help until all kinds of big name teams got to get an extra game on “Kickoff Classic” Match-ups. Then the “Big name” teams formed “Super Conferences” leaving nobody with room for UH to schedule a marquee opponent after September. The NCAA has to revise and update its exemption so we can compete fairly. Football showed what they were able to do when given a chance (in the mid 80’s) to compete without worry of geographical bias. Imagine if there were as many Bowl Games then as there are now, would have gone to mainland several times. Lot of money to have been earned by UH.

    Title IX was an anti-discrimination law enacted to enhance and demand fairness, and it’s impact on Women’s (and Girl’s) athletics has been immense. Now it’s something this generation doesn’t have to worry about because it is ingrained (as it should be) in our society. We are (Hawaii) part of the United States, we’re not some other Country wanting part of the action. Just give us a chance and I’m sure all of our programs will thrive. Here. Right here. In the middle of “Somewhere”. America.

  11. islandman May 23, 2018 7:30 am

    Vchulek will pursue a sportscasting opport. if not drafted, per article today.
    Follow in Spangler’s footsteps ?

  12. Stephen Tsai May 23, 2018 7:50 am

    New post: http://www.hawaiiwarriorworld.com/?p=45944

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