I'd like to give a big thanks to Southwest. Yesterday, my 7-year-old and 8-year-old flew by themselves for the first time. I chose Southwest to be the provider of that experience because truthfully, it seems to be the only airline left where the Employees actually enjoy their job and interacting with Customers.
While any parent would be nervous about leaving their kids alone to fly, I had faith that Southwest would not only deliver my children safely, but do it with care. So, my expectations were not low for this experience—yet you still managed to exceed them.
Darla, an off-duty Flight Attendant, took Tommy and Will "under her wing" from the minute she spotted them at the Cincinnati airport until they arrived safely to me in Chicago. The kids were almost sad to say goodbye to her after their 50-minute flight—such was the magic of Darla! She talked with them the entire flight, introduced them to the Pilots, and even took pictures she shared with me so I could have something so momentous documented. Darla is the best!
There is a lot about flying these days that can be an unpleasant experience: from getting to the airport, to the long lines at security, to the undeniable anxiety that exists with all travelers about why there has to be long lines at security, to what can be (especially with other airlines) a ridiculous boarding process. At Southwest, you've always had a "what you see is what you get" model, which is refreshing because it means you set expectations and actually meet them—but it's more, so much more. Your Employees make it enjoyable to fly on Southwest. You give them the freedom to be themselves, have ownership over relationships, and feel comfortable being able to offer humor, care, and concern to their Customers.
Your entire Team made this experience special for my boys, and something they will never forget. So, thank you again!