Southwest Airlines Fact Sheet
Updated: July 16, 2009
- About the Company
- Daily Departures
- 2008 Financial Statistics
- Cities Served by Southwest
- Southwest Airlines' Top Ten Airports
- Reservations Centers
- Fun Facts
- Southwest Airlines Distinctions
- Southwest Airlines' Recognitions
Gary Kelly, Chairman of the Board, Chief Executive Officer, President
P.O. Box 36611
2702 Love Field Drive
Dallas, TX 75235
Southwest Airlines was incorporated in Texas and commenced Customer Service on June 18, 1971, with three Boeing 737 aircraft serving three Texas cities - Houston, Dallas, and San Antonio. Today, Southwest operates more than 500 Boeing 737 aircraft between 67 cities. Southwest topped the monthly domestic originating passenger rankings for the first time in May 2003. Yearend results for 2008 marked Southwest’s 36th consecutive year of profitability. Southwest became a major airline in 1989 when it exceeded the billion-dollar revenue mark. Southwest is the United States’ most successful low-fare, high frequency, point-to-point carrier. Southwest operates more than 3,300 flights a day coast-to-coast, making it the largest U.S. carrier based on domestic departures as of September 30, 2008.
More than 3,300 flights a day
More than 35,000 total Employees throughout the Southwest system.
Common stock is traded under the symbol “LUV” on the NYSE.
- Net income: $178 million
- Net income, excluding special items: $294 million
- Total passengers carried: 101.9 million
- Total RPMs: 73.5 billion
- Average passenger load factor: 71.2 percent
- Total operating revenue: $11.0 billion
Southwest flies to 67 cities in 34 states.
Dallas (Love Field)
Harlingen/South Padre Island
Long Island (MacArthur)
Los Angeles (LAX)
New York (LaGuardia)
Salt Lake City
Washington, DC (Dulles)
West Palm Beach
Southwest currently operates 544 Boeing 737 jets (as of July 16, 2009).
- The Company’s fleet has an average age of approximately 10 years.
- The average aircraft trip length is 635 miles with an average duration of one hour and 55 minutes.
- Southwest aircraft fly an average of 6.2 flights per day, or almost 12 hours and 9 minutes per day.
- Southwest was the launch customer for the Boeing 737-700 in 1997. Southwest was also a launch customer for the Boeing 737-500 and -300 series aircraft.
- Southwest has almost completed updating its traditional gold, red and orange paint scheme by adding Canyon Blue. All new aircraft will have the updated colors and interior. Existing aircraft are being retrofitted.
- Performance-enhancing Blended Winglets have been added to our fleet of 737-700s, and all new 737-700 aircraft arrive from Boeing with Blended Winglets installed. Additionally, Southwest began installation of Blended Winglets on some of our 737-300 aircraft in early 2007. Approximately 90 -300 aircraft are expected to retrofitted with Blended Winglets, and as of the first quarter of 2009, over 70 of those retrofilts have been completed. The remainder are expected to be completed by the end of 2009.
Dallas (Love Field)
Las Angeles (LAX)
Southwest Airlines currently operates six Customer Support and Services centers located in Albuquerque, Chicago, Houston, Phoenix, Oklahoma City, and San Antonio.
- Southwest received 199,200 resumes and hired 3,350 new Employees in 2008.
- In 2008 Southwest served 55.2 million cans of soda, juices, and water; 12.4 million alcoholic beverages; 9.8 million bags of pretzels; 90.8 million bags of peanuts; 9 million snack boxes; and 32 million other snacks.
- Southwest consumed approximately 1.5 billion gallons of jet fuel in 2008.
- In 2008, Southwest moved 225 million pounds of cargo.
- The shortest daily Southwest flight is between Ft. Myers (RSW) and Orlando (MCO) (133 miles). The longest daily Southwest flight is between Baltimore (BWI) and San Diego (SAN) (2,295 miles).
- Southwest has 1,328 married couples. In other words, 2,656 Southwest Employees have spouses who also work for the Company.
- Southwest’s average passenger airfare is $113.97, and the average passenger trip length is about 855 miles.
- Southwest Airlines has consistently received the lowest ratio of complaints per passengers boarded of all Major U.S. carriers that have been reporting statistics to the Department of Transportation (DOT) since September 1987, which is when the DOT began tracking Customer Satisfaction statistics and publishing its Air Travel Consumer Report.
- The airline adopted the first profit-sharing plan in the U.S. airline industry in 1973. Through this plan and others, Employees own about eight percent of the Company stock.
- The airline is about 79 percent unionized.
- Southwest Airlines is a member of the FORTUNE 500.
- The Ronald McDonald House program, cornerstone of the Ronald McDonald Children’s Charities, is the primary corporate charity of Southwest Airlines. Annually, the Company sponsors the Southwest Airlines LUV Classic golf tournaments whose proceeds benefit various Ronald McDonald Houses and have totaled close to $11 million over the past 23 years.
- Advertising Age Magazine recognized Southwest Airlines as a “Marketing 50 Case Study” for its “Freedom From Fees” campaign with GSD&M’s Idea City.
- For the 12th year in a row, FORTUNE magazine recognized Southwest Airlines in its annual survey of corporate reputations in 2008. Southwest Airlines is the only airline to make the top 20 list and has also earned the top spot on the Most Admired Airline list.
- Southwest Airlines’ Rapid Rewards program was honored in InsideFlyer magazine’s 2008 annual Freddie Awards for Best Award Redemption, Best Award, and Best Member Communications.
- In a 2008 TIME.com survey of the friendliest and stingiest airlines, Southwest Airlines ranked no.1 for being the Friendliest Airlines.
- In October 2008, www.nutsaboutsouthwest.com was awarded “Best Blog” for the second year in a row. This prestigious honor is presented by PR News, the leading trade publication among communicators worldwide.
- In 2008, Forbes magazine ranked the dependability of the nation’s 10 major carriers and Southwest Airlines topped the list as the number one Most Reliable Airline.
- After soliciting feedback from almost 10,000 travelers, SmarterTravel recognized Southwest Airlines as “Best Airfare Prices” in its Readers’ Choice Awards in fall 2008.
- Institutional Investor magazine recognized Southwest Airlines as one of the Top Shareholder Friendly Companies in 2008.
- In March 2009, Southwest Airlines was ranked #3 on CampusGrotto’s list of Best College Internship Programs.
- Southwest Airlines was named to Business Week’s list of “Customer Service Champs” in 2007 and 2008. The Business Week list ranks the best providers of Customer Service, and digs into the techniques, strategies, and tools they use to deliver great service.
- Southwest continues to rank as the largest U.S. carrier in terms of passengers carried, according to the most recent figures released (September 30, 2008) by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics.
- In Zagat’s 2008 Airlines Survey, Southwest Airlines ranked #1 for “Best Airline Website.”
- Southwest Airlines was recognized as Corporation of the Year by MANA, a National Latina Organization.
- Southwest Airlines was included in the Top 500 Most Innovative Users of Technology list by Information Week.
- Southwest Airlines was voted “Overall Best Airline” in the U.S. by Frost & Sullivan’s CEO Leadership Forum in 2007.
- The National Aviation Hall of Fame honored Herb Kelleher in its enshrine class of 2008.
- In July 2007, Southwest Airlines was included in the Top 100 Most Innovative Technology Organizations by InformationWeek Magazine.
- Southwest Airlines was included in Hispanic Business Magazine’s Top 60 Diversity Elite for 2007.
- The Port of Portland presented Southwest Airlines with an Environmental Excellence Award in recognition of an exemplary effort in the category of Environmental Innovation in April 2007.
- The Express Delivery & Logistics Association (XLA) honored Southwest Airlines as the “2008 Airline of the Year.” This is the fourth consecutive year that Southwest Airlines Cargo has received this honor.
- Travel and Leisure Magazine ranked Southwest Airlines 4th for Top Domestic Carriers in 2007.
- Southwest Airlines received the distinctive honor of the Best Domestic Airline award by Travel Weekly in 2007.
- Corporate Research International ranked Southwest Airlines number one in the Customer Service Survey.
- In 2008, online bookings reached 78% via southwest.com, compared to approximately 74% in 2007.
- More than 7 million people subscribe to Southwest’s weekly Click ‘N Save e-mails.
- In the first quarter of 2009, approximately 77% of Southwest Customers are checking in online or at a kiosk.
- SWABIZ, Southwest’s free online booking tool that allows business travelers to plan, purchase, and track business travel, increased sales 17% from 2007 to 2008.
- 66% of Fortune 500 Companies are enrolled in SWABIZ as of 2006.
- Southwest was the first airline to establish a home page on the Internet. Initially, five Employees comprised Southwest’s web site development team, and the site took about nine months to create.
- In January 2009, southwest.com was the 4th largest travel site and largest airline site in terms of unique visitors (source: Comscore MediaMetrix). Nielsen/Netratings also reported that southwest.com was the largest airline site in terms of unique visitors.
- In 2007, southwest.com was the number one airline web site for online revenue according to PhoCusWright.
- The “Southwest Shortcut” feature on southwest.com is the first online tool that helps Customers find the lowest fare based on availability over an entire month.
- DING!, a downloadable desktop application, available for both PC and MAC users, was introduced in February 2005, to notify Customers of exclusive hot offers,. Southwest was the first airline to implement this type of tool.
- In addition to flights, Customers are also able to make car, hotel, cruise, and complete vacation package reservations on southwest.com.