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One Year Later

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A friend reminded me that Saturday marked the first anniversary of a day I thought would never come. It was Oct. 13, 2006, that President Bush signed an amendment that contained what many call the "Love Field compromise." The compromise allowed, for the first time in more than 26 years, the sale of flights from Dallas' Love Field airport to destinations beyond Texas and its contiguous states. The result is that travel to Dallas has gotten cheaper and more plentiful. (See this Dallas Morning News article from Sept. 30, 2007, which has a lot of great facts.) "Air fares to and from Love Field went down almost immediately after repeal of the anti-competitive Wright Amendment," said Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, Texas' senior senator who helped lead the way on the compromise effort. "We are now at the one year anniversary of the repeal being signed into law. Our collective effort was a long process, but I am proud that all parties could come together to provide more competition and significantly reduce prices for North Texas travelers." Having only lived in Dallas for 13 years, I often struggled to explain the Wright Amendment to friends, family, and perfect strangers. Since 1979, this now former Congressional amendment prevented Southwest from selling a ticket or marketing flights to its home airport from cities that knew darn well Southwest served it. We even had people call to complain that our web site was "broken" because it didn't list service to Dallas from the majority of our destinations. It generally took more than seven to ten seconds to explain why that was so, and how the US Congress could have approved such a thing. In my line of work as a spokesperson to the media, you rarely get more than ten seconds to explain anything. But, about the time I had somewhat perfected my ten-second quip, our CEO Gary Kelly shifted the sand in 2004, and we would embark upon one of the biggest legislative efforts in our history. The solution would put us in the room with our cross-town rivals, American Airlines, and bring together the cities of Dallas and Ft. Worth which often were likened to the Hatfields and McCoys. Where once we were divided over a piece of legislative paper, we now were united with a presidential signature for the benefit of the entire region. "In just the first year, travel to North Texas is easier and more affordable than ever," said our great Leader, Herb Kelleher, who is no stranger to the workings of Congress. The compromise immediately allowed "through-ticketing" of flights from Love to all Southwest's destinations, which still includes an interim stop, but nonstop flights will once again be allowed from Love in 2014. "Thanks to the hard work and support of Leaders such as Sen. Hutchison, it is the consumer who is the ultimate victor." My friend's reminder was a great reason to look back at how far we continue to come, and I truly appreciate what it is that bolts me out of bed in the morning to see what happens next!
8 Comments
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it has already been one year... my how time flies!! i still cannot believe that such a law would ever exist but it did. as we can now see the consumers are the biggest winners (FORMER) USS BLOG BOY
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It is hard to believe it has been a year and kudos to Southwest for keeping up the fight to end that unjust law.
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I can't believe it's been a year! The time sure does fly! SWA, you 'da best! SWA LUV :) Cool fact: The Stone Lion Inn B & B in Oklahoma is haunted! I stayed there once. 🙂
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Wow...it's been a year already. Well, I was one of the folks who emailed in letters to Congress about the silly Wright Amendment. I am glad someone finally listened! Thanks, SWA, for hanging in there. I love you, guys. I admire your company and the mostly I just love the employees. You guys make me feel like a million bucks each and every time I fly. Yes, I have other choices....but SWA is always my first choice. NOW, we just have to get you guys into Georgia and ATL!! Smooches and much LUV!!
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I think the most significant thing about the last year, in relation to the Wright Amendment, is all the things that DID NOT happen. There were some Ã
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WOO HOO a year later and I am ecstatic that I no longer have to struggle to explain to our passengers this Wright silliness. I'm glad that my family and friends I have in Dallas can now enjoy a worry free flight, no checking/claiming/rechecking. No more seemingly endless conncections and to beat all the PRICES ARE ABSOLUTELY RIGHT!! :-) cheers and happy day!!
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i just wanted to comment to you (inasmuch as you are public relations for southwest) when i went on line to a ticket for thanksgiving (more than a month ago) i found that instead of the normal $300 r/t price, you guys were gouging consumers and i got to pay over $600. so, after speaking to several of my friends we've decided that once on the plane we are going to circulate a notebook asking that each passenger write down how much they had to pay for their ticket. before we deplane after the flight, we are going to stand up and announce the results of the poll then, with this info we are going to go to the press and/or department of consumer affairs to expose the fact that you guys are screwing your customers. i can assure you, i'll never fly southwest again and my hunch is once you are exposed for taking advantage of people during the holidays, a lot of other people won't either. you should be ashamed.
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TEX9 MLC RZC STL BVT Maybe someday ;-) Stick and save your game pieces below Pega y guarda tus Estamillas de Juego debajo Ding! boy joe!