Dallas-based Southwest Airlines is doubling the number of flights out of the nation's capital after purchasing slots put up for grabs during the American Airlines-US Airways merger.
On Monday, Southwest said they will add seven new nonstop routes out of DCA with additional connecting itineraries beginning this summer.
"By year's end, we'll offer 44 daily departures to 14 destinations from Reagan National Airport," said Ron Ricks, Southwest Airlines executive vice president and chief legal & regulatory officer. "We've been interested in expanding at Washington National for a long time."
Landing slots at DCA and New York's LaGuardia Airport became available after the Department of Justice insisted American and US Airways give them up, to improve competition, before approving their merger. Those slots were purchased by Southwest, Virgin America and JetBlue Airways.
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Beginning Aug. 10, Southwest will add daily, nonstop flights between DCA and Chicago Midway (six flights), Nashville (three flights) and New Orleans (two flights). Beginning Sept. 30, Southwest will add flights from DCA to Tampa Bay (two flights) and three additional flights to Chicago Midway.
Southwest said by offering nine daily flights to Midway it enables the airline to "provide convenient one-stop and connecting flights throughout the day between DCA and more than 40 other cities across the United States."
On Nov. 2, Southwest will add new, daily nonstop service between DCA and Akron-Canton, Indianapolis and Dallas Love Field, which will no longer be subject to travel restrictions imposed by the Wright Amendment. At that time, they'll also expand service out of DCA to Houston Hobby and St. Louis.
The number of flights added in November will be revealed in mid-May.
On Monday, the airline also announced new service between St. Louis and San Francisco (beginning Sept. 30), Los Angeles and Omaha (beginning June 9), St. Louis and Los Angeles (beginning June 8) and between Boise and Los Angeles (Saturday's only, beginning June 14).
Southwest will kickoff the new service with special fares, as low as $84, for travel every day except Fridays and Sundays. For information on fare sales, ticket prices and travel schedules, visit Southwest.com.