SOUTHWEST AIRLINES TO SEEK DOT APPROVAL FOR DAILY NONSTOP SERVICE BETWEEN WASHINGTON NATIONAL AIRPORT AND LAS VEGAS

New Route Would Provide Low-Fare Competition and West Coast Connectivity with the Nation’s Capital

DALLAS, May 20, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE:LUV) will apply to the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) for new, daily nonstop service between Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA) and Harry Reid International Airport in Las Vegas (LAS). The carrier is seeking one of five new round-trip flights made available at DCA through the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2024.

The new nonstop service would provide airline consumers with much-needed choices and competition on the DCA to LAS nonstop route that currently has only one flight per day operated by another airline. If awarded the route, Southwest® projects significantly lower average fares from DCA to LAS, where Southwest offers more than 260 departures a day this summer, creating convenient connecting opportunities from LAS for communities across the western United States, including Hawaii.

The airline’s forthcoming application also will propose to provide the only one-stop, same-plane/no change service between DCA and Sacramento International Airport (SMF) via LAS. The direct flight between California’s capital and the nation’s capital would maximize the competitive and consumer benefits of the DCA route.

“Southwest has a long history of connecting people across the nation with important moments in their lives through competitive airfares, friendly and flexible policies, and the unmatched Hospitality of our People,” said Bob Jordan, President & Chief Executive Officer at Southwest Airlines. “We look forward to demonstrating to the DOT that Southwest’s proposal will maximize benefits to the traveling public.”

“As the chair of the subcommittee overseeing tourism and a member of the aviation subcommittee that helped write the FAA reauthorization bill, I’ve been working to bolster our national travel and tourism industry by increasing the flight slots to and from DCA,” said U.S. Sen. Jacky Rosen. “I’m glad to support Southwest’s application to provide nonstop service between DCA and Harry Reid International Airport because bringing more flights to Las Vegas creates more options for visitors to come to our state and helps sustain critical tourism jobs.”

“Providing this much-needed service between the nation’s capital and the sports and entertainment capital of the world will open up new opportunities for all travelers,” said Rosemary Vassiliadis, Clark County Director of Aviation. “Southwest Airlines continues to be the largest commercial carrier at LAS, accounting for more than 34% of our annual passengers. The potential to expand this critical service to and from DCA will provide business and leisure travelers with more convenient options and accessibility for nonstop service that hasn’t been available in the past.”  

Southwest plans to operate the proposed service seven days a week on a Boeing 737 aircraft with 175 seats. Southwest uniquely offers every Customer a combination of up to two checked pieces of baggage for free (weight and size limitations apply) and travel funds and frequent flyer points that do not expire. In its more than 50-year history, Southwest has never charged a change fee.

“We believe Southwest’s proposed new DCA-LAS nonstop service will lower fares and increase access for the nation’s capital, Las Vegas, and western states,” Jordan said. “Customers in both markets will benefit from competitive airfares and nonstop, hassle-free transportation aboard the airline that invented friendly, reliable flying.”

ABOUT SOUTHWEST AIRLINES CO.
Southwest Airlines Co. operates one of the world’s most admired and awarded airlines, offering its one-of-a-kind value and Hospitality at 121 airports across 11 countries. Southwest took flight in 1971 to democratize the sky through friendly, reliable, and low-cost air travel and now carries more air travelers flying nonstop within the United States than any other airline1. Based in Dallas and famous for an Employee-first corporate Culture, Southwest maintains an unprecedented record of no involuntary furloughs or layoffs in its history. By empowering its more than 74,0002 People to deliver unparalleled Hospitality, the maverick airline cherishes a passionate loyalty among more than 137 million Customers carried in 2023. That formula for success brought industry-leading prosperity and 47 consecutive years3 of profitability for Southwest Shareholders (NYSE: LUV). Southwest leverages a unique legacy and mission to serve communities around the world including harnessing the power of its People and Purpose to put communities at the Heart of its success. Learn more by visiting Southwest.com/citizenship. As the airline with Heart, Southwest has set a goal to work toward achieving net zero carbon emissions by 20504. Southwest has also set near-term targets and a three-pillar strategy to achieve its environmental goals. Learn more by visiting Southwest.com/planet.

1Based on U.S. Dept. of Transportation quarterly Airline Origin & Destination Survey since Q1 2021 

2Fulltime-equivalent active Employees      

31973-2019 annual profitability    

4 Net zero by 2050 goal includes Scope 1, Scope 2, and Scope 3 Category 3 emissions only and excludes any emissions associated with non-fuel products and services, such as inflight service items.

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SOURCE Southwest Airlines Co.