Today, we opened our April/May 2013 Schedules, and effective April 14, we will convert AirTran Airways service at Charlotte, North Carolina; Flint, Mich..; Portland, Maine; and Rochester, New York, to Southwest service. We’ll also open sales out through May 31, 2013, giving us 221 days of bookable inventory. Lots of changes to discuss … so read on!
At Charlotte, Southwest will transfer AirTran’s two daily Charlotte-Baltimore/Washington roundtrips to Southwest, replace AirTran’s nonstops between Charlotte and Atlanta with one daily nonstop roundtrip between Charlotte and both Houston/Hobby and Orlando, and add two daily roundtrips between Charlotte and Chicago/Midway. In addition to nonstops to four airports, we’ll offer Charlotte direct or connecting service to or from 71 other Southwest destinations. At Flint, Southwest will replace AirTran’s nonstops between Flint and Atlanta with three daily roundtrips between Flint and Baltimore/Washington, and shift AirTran’s daily roundtrip nonstops between Flint and both Orlando and Tampa Bay to Southwest. AirTran’s seasonal nonstops between Flint and Ft. Myers will end. In all, Southwest will offer Flint Customers service to three nonstop and up to 56 direct or connecting Southwest airports!
In the Northeast, we’ll convert AirTran’s three nonstop roundtrips between Portland, Maine, and Baltimore/Washington to three Southwest nonstops, enabling direct or connecting itineraries to 57 additional Southwest points. At Rochester, Southwest will replace AirTran’s nonstop Rochester-Atlanta service with two new Southwest nonstops between Rochester and Chicago/Midway, will convert AirTran’s double-daily nonstop service between Rochester and both Baltimore/Washington and Orlando to Southwest, and will replace AirTran’s two daily nonstops between Rochester and Tampa Bay with one nonstop on Southwest. This will allow Southwest to offer service to four nonstop and another 67 direct or connecting destinations to Rochester Customers! And, after this round of city conversions, we’ll only have five airports that aren’t either fully converted to Southwest or that continue to see both Southwest and AirTran aircraft—Grand Rapids, Memphis, Pensacola, Richmond, and Wichita—so we’re definitely making great progress on the integration front!
As with any schedule extension, the April/May 2013 Southwest schedule is completely re-optimized, so you’ll find that itineraries in nearly every market have shifted around a bit. You’ll notice continued evidence of our fleet modernization initiative, with more of our beautiful (and efficient!) new 737-800s flying across America, replacing older 737-300s and -500s. Expected annual changes in wind patterns mean flying times will change, and because of seasonal traffic shifts we will make a number of other service changes. We’ll add two new roundtrip nonstops between Boston Logan and Kansas City and one nonstop roundtrip between Houston/Hobby and Pittsburgh. We’ll also bring back seasonal nonstops in the Baltimore/Washington-Seattle, Cleveland-Las Vegas, Kansas City-Oakland, and San Diego-St. Louis markets.
To pay for that new service, Southwest will permanently discontinue service between Boise and Portland, Ore.; between Burbank and Denver; and between Houston/Hobby and Philadelphia. We’ll also end seasonal nonstop service between Ft. Myers and Nashville, Boston, Long Island/ Logan, Islip, and Philadelphia, between Orlando and Dayton and Indianapolis, and between West Palm Beach and Pittsburgh and Providence. And, we will make frequency adjustments in hundreds of other Southwest nonstop markets, as we do with each schedule release.
Naturally, a number of changes also will happen across the AirTran network. In addition to the conversion of Charlotte; Flint; Portland, Maine; and Rochester, AirTran will add new nonstop roundtrips between Baltimore/Washington and the beautiful beaches of Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic. AirTran nonstop service will replace nonstops on Southwest in the Buffalo-Ft. Lauderdale/Hollywood, Orlando-Minneapolis/St. Paul, Philadelphia-West Palm Beach, and Ft. Myers-Philadelphia markets. AirTran will supplement Southwest service by adding nonstops between Orlando and both St. Louis and Kansas City, between Buffalo and Tampa Bay, and between Chicago/Midway and Ft. Lauderdale/Hollywood. AirTran will also seasonally join Southwest nonstops between Boston Logan and Milwaukee and between Tampa Bay and both Chicago/Midway and Columbus. AirTran will end seasonal nonstops between Tampa Bay and Grand Rapids, and between Ft. Myers and Akron/Canton, Detroit, Grand Rapids, and Flint. Fifty-seven other AirTran markets will have their frequencies adjusted.
With this schedule extension, we’ll have 221 days of bookable inventory, with the next schedule extension (the Summer 2013 Schedule!) coming later this Fall. So everyone—enjoy the great weather, and have a fantastic week!