Can affordability be the unique selling point on which an airline is founded? Since its inception, Airtran Airways has operated with a motive of offering low-cost services to the American population. It has been known to operate more than 700 flights on a daily basis with destinations mostly in eastern and Midwestern United States. The slogan, “Go. There is nothing stopping you” reflects its dedication to empowering travel to people who would otherwise feel restricted by costly air tickets.
Airtran Flights was originally a Boeing 737 operator with flight services to and from Orlando. It came to being in 1994 when Airtran Holdings purchased Conquest Sun (A startup which exclusively operated 737s) and subsequently renamed it to Airtran airways. Airtran Holdings was the holding company for Mesaba Airlines and shortly for the new Airtran Airways until it spun-off in 1995 forming Airways Corporation as its holding company. Airtran was acquired by Southwest Airlines for 1.4 billion dollars.
Before its acquisition by Southwest Airlines, Airtran had a total of 140 aircraft in its fleet. It was made of 52 Boeing 737-700s and 88 Boeing 717-200s. Something interesting about this fleet is that it had in it the first and last Boeing 717-200s ever built.
Airtran flights served 69 destinations in the United States, Puerto Rico and abroad. Some of its top destinations included Orlando, Atlanta, Boston Milwaukee, Pittsburgh, Tampa, Fort Lauderdale and Washington DC. Airtran did not have any code share agreements with major global alliances apart from the one with Southwest Airlines, its parent airline.
Airtran Airways had a two-class configuration which featured economy class and business class products. Perhaps, it restrained from introducing a first class product to keep its original vision of offering low-cost travel. In its cabins 13 was skipped when numbering the seats because of the superstition it is associated with.
Airtran flights have had special Livery on its fleet. To promote travel to the Orlando, the Airline partnered with Orlando/Orange CVB (OOCVB) to create which had to say Yes to Orlando logo on either side. Another plane in the same plan had a logo saying Orlando ‘Makes Me Smile on either side’. It also had planes with sports related themes representing Atlanta Falcons, Baltimore Ravens, ORLANDO Magic and Milwaukee Brewers.
Airtran Airways is currently operating under Southwest Airlines. Its parent airline has received several awards including Airline of the Year in 2011 from Columbus (Ohio) in 2011 and Domestic Carrier of the Year for Cargo Air forwarders Association in the same year. Airtran Airlines is however widely reputed for its low-fare services.
Airtran Airlines is currently integrated with Southwest Airlines. However, the low-cost travel vision lives on. Book your cheap flight tickets at faremachine.com and explore all of America’s popular cities; coast to coast.