"In case you fell asleep last March and woke up realizing it is actually May 2021, like I did, you got up just in time because May is bringing some record-breaking growth in our Hawaii service! Ever since our service to the Hawaiian Islands began in 2019, it has been our vision to be Aloha strong in these beautiful destinations. We are so excited to share the details of this expansion, especially following the unprecedented challenges last year brought.
This monumental expansion brings our total gateways count up to eight, including the three new gateway cities added with daily nonstop service to Honolulu Oahu (HNL) and Kahului, Maui (OGG): Las Vegas (LAS), Los Angeles (LAX), and Phoenix (PHX)! As you might have already guessed, these three gateways also result in greater network connectivity for more Stations in the central U.S. and stretching as far east as Nashville (BNA). For example, Customers in Nashville (BNA), Dallas (DAL), and Kansas City (MCI)–just to name a few–will now enjoy daily round trip service to Honolulu, Oahu (HNL) and Kahului, Maui (OGG). Although this growth marks a huge milestone for Southwest, we will continue to grow our network and connectivity to Hawaii as we see improved performance and demand. As a bonus, the Los Angeles (LAX) gateway means we are now offering round trip more nonstop flights to Honolulu, Oahu and Kahului, Maui, giving our fabulous Crew Members more efficient pairings to the Islands.
How much growth is there? We’re adding 21 daily round trips, from 16 to 37 daily round trips between the mainland to Hawaii. That is more than double our current capacity! The last time we had a quasi-comparable network growth as this was when we increased our service at Denver International Airport (DEN) in the late 2000s. While all of the opportunities taken to improve and grow our network are notable and important, we are thrilled for the opportunity to serve more Customers and remain competitive following this incredible milestone!
Southwest now will be ranked second for daily trips and third for daily seats in and out of Hawaii as we remain in close contention with other carriers serving Hawaii. Of course, we can’t ignore the fact that with the return of the Boeing 737 MAX 8 back on March 11, and our ETOPS application process with the FAA now complete, the vision to fly ETOPS-authorized MAX 8 aircraft on Hawaii routings is finally coming to fruition! With the upcoming addition of 50 MAX 8 ETOPS aircraft to our fleet of 28 737-800 ETOPS aircraft, Southwest Airlines has officially shaken up the competitive landscape; we will hold approximately 18% of all mainland to Hawaii seats in the industry!
Southwest has never been the kind of Company to just accept the status quo and we will continue down the path Gary laid out for us in his 2021 Battle Plan: Survive, Stabilize, Repair, and Prosper. Moreover, serving our Customers is what we do; in fact, Colleen Barrett said it best when she said, “We’re in the Customer Service business. We just happen to fly airplanes.” This is so true, even when it comes to building the Network, finding ways to drive revenue, and ultimately connect our “extended Family” to what matters most to them. Expanding our Hawaii network is one more way we get to serve our Customers while also ensuring Southwest continues to be their number one airline. All that to say, I hope to see y’all onboard some of these flights this summer–Paradise is waiting! Head to Southwest.com now to book your next trip and be sure to tell your friends and family!"
Sent from my pilot friend