Thursday, April 9, 2015

Southwest Airlines has fuller planes as it adds new destinations at Love Field

Southwest Airlines carried 10.3 million revenue passengers in March, up 5.7 percent from the same month in 2014, according to traffic results released Wednesday.
Dallas-based Southwest had fuller planes, too, with load factors at 84.5 percent, up 1.8 points from the same month in 2014.
The load factor is calculated by taking the revenue passengers carried multiplied by miles traveled and divided by the total available seat miles.
The average Southwest flight was 988 miles in March, up .9 percent from March, 2014. The total amount of trips flown decreased 2 percent.
Southwest also released its first-quarter traffic results.
The load factor for the first quarter was 80.1 percent, up .8 points from the first quarter of 2014.
The airline carried 5.5 percent more revenue passengers, had its revenue passenger miles increase 7 percent and total capacity miles jump by 6 percent.
That includes the launch of new flights to San Francisco and Oakland from Dallas Love Field.
Southwest has been growing quickly at Love Field, adding flights to new destinations since the Wright Amendment flight restrictions were lifted in October. Southwest had nearly 91 percent market share at Love Field in February, according to the airport’s traffic statistics.
Southwest had 832,121 passengers come and go from Love Field in February, up 36 percent from the same period in 2014.
Going back to Oct. 1, Southwest’s traffic is up 30 percent. The Wright Amendment flight restrictions were lifted on Oct. 13.
This week, Southwest is adding new flights to:
  • Charleston, S.C.
  • Columbus, Ohio
  • Indianapolis, Indiana
  • Memphis, Tennessee
  • Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Portland, Oregon
  • Seattle/Tacoma, Washington
  • Sacramento, California
  • San Jose, California
  • Panama City, Florida
With these additions, Southwest now launches 166 daily departures from Love Field. Prior to the lifting of the Wright Amendment, the airline was limited to flights within Texas and adjoining states and only had 118 take-offs per day.
Southwest will add eight more cities in August, bringing the total take-offs to 180.

Those cities will be:
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • Charlotte, North Carolina
  • Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina
  • Detroit, Michigan
  • Omaha, Nebraska
  • Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Salt Lake City, Utah
(Nicholas Sakelaris - Dallas Business Journal)

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