Campus News Blog: Southwest Merger with AirTran May Benefit You

September 30, 2010 by · Comments Off 

Posted By Kassi Schmitt

Dallas-based Southwest Airlines announced Monday that it is buying AirTran for $1.4 billion. The merger of these two airlines will become the nation’s fourth-largest carrier, but what does that mean for you?  

1). Better service! We all know Southwest employees ensure great service, whether you’re on the ground or thousands of miles in the air.

2). The new airline would expand its locations and operate from more than 100 airports and serve more than 100 million customers according to an article from The Dallas Morning News. (However, the deal would remove AirTran from DFW, currently one of the cheapest carriers because of a deal with Southwest at Love Field.)

3). It’s great news for your wallets as Southwest and AirTran don’t have much flight overlap, so the merger won’t lead to higher fares.

4). Who’s in for some fun in the sun? Southwest would become an international airline if it keeps AirTran’s flights to Aruba, the Bahamas, etc. 

5). Because it’s only inevitable, if your flight is delayed or canceled you can now be re-routed thanks to a much larger route structure.

6). Unfortunately, it’s goodbye to AirTran’s business class cabin seats as Southwest will most likely move the airline to its one-cabin model and open-seat boarding process.

6). This also means that AirTran will lose its brand and will operate entirely under Southwest’s logo and colors.

The merger will NOT take affect right away. Southwest and AirTran hope to combine their operations within 24 months of the closing deal, according to Southwest chief Gary Kelly.

But if this new merger is really as good as it sounds- better service, more flights around the world at no increased cost- what’s your next vacation destination going to be?