Southwest Airlines is not the largest either by fleet size or number of passengers flown but interestingly, it has a reputation for being the largest low-cost carrier globally. It operates 3800 flights daily and is recognized as the one airline which has flown the largest number of domestic passengers.
The carrier was begun in 1967 but the name Southwest Airlines did not emerge until 1971. It has an inspiring story of success. Shortly after it started operations, it went into litigation for the right to fly within Texas. The legal action was plotted against it by Braniff, Transtexas and Continental airlines. Southwest started expanding in 1975 by adding more destinations to its catalogue. To grow bigger, it has been acquiring airlines with its latest acquisition being the one of AirTran in 2011.
Since its inception, Southwest Airlines has been using Boing 737s except for a short period in the 70s and the 80s when it leased some Flight 727s from Braniff. Currently, the airline’s entire fleet consists of Flight 737s which average six flights daily. There are 707 in total which majority being the 737-700 variant. The number of Flight 737-700s totals to 475.
Southwest services flights to 97 destinations in 41 states and additionally, the Caribbean, Puerto Rico and Mexico. Some of its top destinations are Las Vegas, Houston, Dallas, Phoenix and Denver. The airline has partnerships with ATA airlines, WestJet, Icelandair and Volaris.
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Southwest has a one-class cabin configuration offering economy. However, it retrofits its interior regularly to make its coach class more comfortable.
Southwest Airlines Deals in-flight personal entertainment which is powered by AVOD (Audio Video on Demand) on all its Flight 737-700 and 737-800 fleet. In addition, passengers can enjoy internet browsing on their mobile devices via in-flight Wi-Fi.
The Southwest Airlines allows passengers two checked-in bags not weighing more than 23 kgs. Any additional bags will cost a passenger $ 75. The airline is the only one in the US which does not charge for the first two checked-in bags.
Since its inception, Southwest has been bagging several awards. Below are some of those it received recently.