In a big win for New Orleans, Southwest Airlines reports it will increase its presence in New Orleans with a total of 114 daily flights by March 9, 2013. This 35 percent increase in lift over the August schedule brings approximately 1.5 million additional seats into the market annually.
Southwest currently operates 76 flights from New Orleans. AirTran Airways, a wholly owned subsidiary of Southwest, operates 8 daily flights.
Southwest notes it will also serve Newark and Key West from New Orleans and AirTran will begin serving Orlando. Each destination will have one daily non-stop flight on the March schedule. The February schedule includes increases in frequency to cities like Dallas Love, Fort Lauderdale, Nashville and St. Louis.
New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu stated, “This additional air service is a big win for our city. I believe it shows that the demand for leisure and business travel to New Orleans is very strong. Demand is always the key in acquiring air service for a city, and this just adds to the recent confidence shown in our airport and our region.”
“Southwest Airlines has made a serious pledge of support to the New Orleans market with this additional air service. On behalf of the New Orleans Aviation Board, I want to express our sincerest thanks for their vote of confidence in our city as a great destination,” Chairman of the Aviation Board Nolan Rollins stated.
“We are pleased with Southwest’s decision to invest in the New Orleans market by adding this service,” stated Iftikhar Ahmad, Director of Aviation for Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport. “Southwest has long been our largest air carrier and this shows their commitment to our community.”