This morning, we opened the Southwest Airlines schedule out for sale through Friday, March 6, 2015. There are some interesting changes to tell you about, of course—but this schedule represents a huge event in the evolution, so let’s start with a paragraph of celebration!
Since shortly after the legal close of Southwest’s acquisition of AirTran, Network Planning has not only been writing and maintaining the schedules of two airlines, but we've also made sure that the schedule of each network operationally viable as a stand-alone entity, and ensured that the Southwest and AirTran schedules complimented each other when looking at market selection and departure timing. Consider the sheer complexity of that task for a moment! The only analogy I can think of to describe it is that it’s been like cracking over 640 eggs—some canyon blue and red, some teal and white—into some huge bowl, scrambling them all together and cooking them perfectly, then successfully separating the scrambled teal eggs from the scrambled canyon blue ones before we serve them. And we've done that for every published schedule for the past four years!
But with the sunset of AirTran service on December 28, 2014, the January 2015 schedule is the first fully optimized schedule that, by design, combines the power of both the Southwest and AirTran networks as a single, unified entity that spans 93 cities from coast to coast, border to border, and includes service to Mexico and four Caribbean nations. Every single Southwest and AirTran Employee had a hand in getting to this point, so take a second to recognize how much we’ve accomplished together in such a small time—and here’s to even greater things in our future!
Now for some schedule details. The January and February always combine a seasonal shift in traffic with the harshest of winter operations, so you’ll notice that in the normal seasonal changes in block times and turn times. You’ll also notice the annual, seasonal additions such as the return of nonstop service between Baltimore/Washington and Oakland, between Ft. Lauderdale and Phoenix, and between Nashville and Ft. Myers. We’ll also seasonally eliminate service in five markets, such as between Albany and Las Vegas and between Phoenix and Raleigh/Durham. Details on all of these market additions and eliminations are listed below.
In the continuing evolution of “All You Need Is LUV” we’ll keep building our North Texas powerhouse in January by adding new nonstop service between Dallas Love Field and Northern California! We’ll add a daily roundtrip between Love and both San Francisco and Oakland. Southwest will also add two additional daily roundtrips between Love Field and New York/LaGuardia, for a total of five daily nonstops. In fact, the January Schedule has 153 daily Southwest departures from the New Love Field—the largest number in memory.
Specifics for our additions and eliminations are listed here, and of course if you have questions just ask. Have a GREAT week, everyone—remember to celebrate both the past AND the future—and make this the best week of your summer!