Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Southwest Airlines Pilots Union does not Support New Codeshare Agreements

Southwest Airlines Pilots' Assn. President Carl Kuwitzky last week told union members that he "cannot support" the carrier's new codeshare agreements with Mexico's Volaris and Canada's WestJet. In a letter obtained by the Dallas Morning News, he said that the alliances have "the potential to severely affect the career of all pilots on our seniority list." Regarding Volaris in particular (ATWOnline, Nov. 11), he claimed that SWA "is risking brand dilution by association with an unknown carrier."

Kuwitzky referenced SWA's partnership with defunct ATA Airlines, writing that it "resulted in numerous customer service and operational problems that reflected poorly on Southwest Airlines." He claimed that SWAPA pilots "could do some transborder flying and completely control our brand image" and that "overwhelming membership feedback" indicated that the codeshares are a "significant thorn in the side of our members" as SWA cuts capacity

(Air Transport World / ATWOnline)