Southwest to convert 22 AirTran Cities
Southwest Airlines and its wholly owned subsidiary have come one step closer to its merger with the announcement of 22 domestic and international airports to be converted to Southwest operations.
The 22 AirTran airports that’ll continue to operate and become part of the Southwest Family include:
- Flint, Michigan (FNT)
- Rochester, New York (ROC)
- Pensacola, Florida (PNS)
- Charlotte, North Carolina (CLT)
- Dayton, Ohio (DAY)
- Richmond, Virginia (RIC)
- Key West, Florida (EYW)
- Washington, D.C. (DCA)
- Memphis, Tennessee (MEM)
- Akron-Canton, Ohio (CAK)
- Wichita, Kansas (ICT)
- Des Moines, Iowa (DSM)
- Branson, Missouri (BKG)
- Portland, Maine (PWM)
- Grand Rapids, Michigan (GRR)
- Punta Cana, Dominican Republic (PUJ)
- Cancun, Mexico (CUN)
- Montego Bay, Jamaica (MBJ)
- Aruba (AUA)
- San Juan, Puerto Rico (SJU)
- Bermuda (BDA)
- Nassau, Bahamas (NAS)
AirTran service and employees at these airports are planned to convert to Southwest gradually over the course of AirTran’s integration into Southwest – including the gradual re-painting of the 737’s! Earlier, the carriers made a joint announcement concerning new service to Mexico City, Mexico (MEX) starting May 24th and San Jose Cabo, Mexico (SJD), slated to start 3rd of June — Mexico City and San Jose Cabo will both convert to Southwest as the merger proceeds.
53 of the 69 cities AirTran served when Southwest acquired the airline on May 2, 2011, are planned to convert to full Southwest Airlines service — in other words, Southwest is holding tightly onto valuable slots at airports such as New York LaGuardia (LGA), and other stations, where they both concurrently operate.
“We are committed to continuing to serve these communities—at first via AirTran, and eventually as Southwest. We know there are Southwest Customers who want access to these cities, but have never before had the opportunity, and the markets have long desired Southwest service,” said Southwest Airlines Executive Vice President & Chief Commercial Officer and AirTran Airways President Bob Jordan. “We are excited about the cities we have chosen to keep in our combined network. At the same time, there are some markets that we simply cannot make work in the current fuel environment, so we’ve had to make the decision to discontinue service in those locations.”
As of August 12, 2012, AirTran Airways will cease operations at the following airports:
- Allentown, Pennsylvania (ABE)
- Lexington, Kentucky (LEX)
- Harrisburg, Pennsylvania (MDT)
- Sarasota, Florida (SRQ)
- Huntsville, Alabama (HSV)
- White Plains, New York (HPN)
AirTran will continue to operate at Allentown, Lexington, Harrisburg, Sarasota, Huntsville, and White Plains until August 11, 2012. AirTran employees at affected locations will have the opportunity to move elsewhere within the company, after August 12, 2012.
The first station with concurrent AirTran and Southwest services to fully convert to Southwest will be Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) on August 12, 2012. AirTran currently serves the market with one daily to Milwaukee (MKE) and seasonal service to both Atlanta (ATL) and Baltimore-Washington (BWI). Southwest will keep the three routes with both direct and connecting flights.
Southwest and AirTran will continue to announce jointly served airport conversions and the above changes will be incorporated into both airlines flight schedules that will publish January 22, 2012 for travel beginning on August 12, 2012.