At Southwest Airlines, we’re famous for what we offer to our Customers—friendly, reliable, and low-cost air travel. We connect millions of our Customers to the things that matter most with 4,000 daily departures and our legendary Hospitality.
We are also a proud leader in community and Employee engagement, financial performance, and environmental stewardship. All of these elements are what help to make up our dedication to corporate citizenship. Corporate citizenship focuses on reducing costs and negative impacts, while maximizing benefits for Stakeholders in three areas: People, Planet, and Performance. Through our citizenship efforts, we strive to make a positive impact by promoting efficiency, reducing natural resource consumption, and supporting the well-being of our Employees and the communities we serve.
Citizenship incorporates various facets that fit together to make up our holistic approach at Southwest. With so many aspects to citizenship, how do we share our work with the world? One of the best ways is through the Southwest Airlines One Report. The One Report, published annually, helps people understand Southwest’s impact on their day-to-day lives, the economy, and the environment.
2018 One Report Highlights
No. 1 Marketing Carrier in Customer Satisfaction per the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) data*
Celebrated 46 consecutive years of profitability
Returned approximately $2.3 billion to Shareholders through share repurchases and dividends
Gave more than $25.2 million total corporate monetary, in-kind, and ticket donations
Served more than 134 million Customers, an all-time annual record
Employees earned $544 million in ProfitSharing for 2018
Improved jet fuel efficiency by 32.8% on a revenue ton mile basis since 2005
Diverted 3,348 tons of waste from landfills through recycling and energy recovery efforts
Committed to purchase three million gallons of sustainable aviation fuel per year, with the first fuel to be delivered in 2020
Telling our Story
The One Report purposely aligns with citizenship’s three pillars, and helps us share our Southwest Story with the world. With great highlights of the incredible work our People undertake, the One Report demonstrates “why” we feel it is important to be a good corporate citizen.
“Writing and documenting the stories we include in the One Report really is a months' long labor of love,” said Manager of Investor Relations Peggy Jansen. “A cross-functional Team comes together to engage subject matter experts across Southwest to capture Southwest's impact as a corporation. By the time we have a finished product more than 100 Employees will have contributed to the One Report!”
The One Report allows Customers to learn more about Southwest and areas of the business that they might not be familiar with. “Our One Report is an inside look into the behind the scenes business of Southwest Airlines. It really is our commitment to our People and a beautiful overview of who Southwest is,” said Director of Corporate Communications Katie Coldwell. “The One Report gives us an opportunity to highlight the good works we are doing and is a chance to step back and appreciate the innovations our Employees bring toward our commitment to citizenship,” Coldwell added.
What are you waiting for? Whether you’re in the air or on the ground, check out the 2018 One Report now at SouthwestOneReport.com!
*Source: Air Travel Consumer Reports. Rankings based on complaints filled with the Department of Transportation (DOT) per 100,000 passengers served. Southwest tied for 1st place in the DOT's Year-to-Date (YTD) Customer Service ranking among Operating Carriers. Southwest was by far #1 among Marketing Carriers. An Operating Carrier can be an airline that only operates flights on behalf of another/larger carrier (i.e. "Branded Codeshare Partner") or any airline that sells and flies under its own brand (a.k.a. "Marketing Carrier").
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For Sam Schmidt, a 30-year Southwest Customer, racecar driving is his passion. It’s the love of the sport that led Schmidt to race in the Indianapolis 500 between 1997 and 1999, and why today he owns his own racing team. “The adrenaline rush, and the thrill of the competition always keeps me coming back,” said Schmidt.
A Passion in Jeopardy
While training for the 2000 season, Schmidt crashed at the Walt Disney World Speedway. The fluke accident blew apart his c3 and c4 vertebrae in his spinal cord. He was unconscious and airlifted to a trauma center where he was on a ventilator for six weeks. “Now, I have no control of anything from the biceps down, and I need help to do most everything,” said Schmidt, “and I was told I would never drive again.”
While Schmidt couldn’t drive, he could own, coach, and mentor a race team. That’s exactly what he did, and much more.
Southwest Airlines Keeps the Race Within Reach
Schmidt has relied on Southwest for decades, even before the accident to get him to the race, quickly and reliably. Southwest’s frequent, non-stop service was ideal for Schmidt’s business, not to mention the no change fees and generous baggage policy.
“Initially after the injury, I had a lot of anxiety with how I could travel, how to prepare, or what to bring,” added Schmidt. Today, Schmidt travels exclusively aboard Southwest. He credits well-trained Employees on the ground for helping him to develop a consistent system and routine that works for him. Schmidt, a wheelchair user, requires specific accommodations to make the flight possible.
“Southwest goes the extra mile to be prepared for Passengers with disabilities; they don’t make you feel uncomfortable or singled-out,” added Schmidt. He also has made some friends along the way with Pilots, Flight Attendants, and the Southwest Employees on the ground across the Southwest system.
One of them is Indianapolis-based Ground Operations Agent Duane Thalley. “I have worked with Sam for the last five years and it has been a pleasure. He always texts me to see if I am working the flight he’s on; he’s even invited me to a few races,” Thalley said.
In addition, Southwest’s open-seating policy and boarding process makes it easy. Customers with disabilities or those needing extra time have an opportunity to board the aircraft first, enabling them to select the seats they need, without a hassle. For Schmidt, that is always in the first row. “On Southwest, as long as you direct your care, it will be fine. Southwest welcomes individuals with disabilities with open arms,” said Schmidt.
Last year, Schmidt took 40 roundtrips aboard Southwest. “There would be no way to do everything I do, between the team, the Foundation, the Corvette, and the speaking engagements, without Southwest Airlines,” added Schmidt.
At the Destination
Once on the ground, Schmidt has made it his mission to improve the lives of all people with disabilities. The Sam Schmidt Paralysis Foundation created Conquer Paralysis Now, which aims to do just that: fight for a paralysis cure. The organization funds scientific research, medical treatment, and technological innovations.
The organization recently opened an intensive rehabilitation, neuro-recovery center in Las Vegas through its Driven Program. The center works to explore innovative supports for people with disabilities. Its vision is to become a community center for all people with disabilities where they can ask questions and feel a sense of belonging. The facility even has an accessible yoga studio and a gym, complete with classes. “I have been driven my entire life; driven to compete, driven to race, and driven to support people with disabilities, so that’s why we call it the Driven Program” added Schmidt.
Leading by Example back in the Driver’s Seat
Schmidt looks at his sleek black Corvette. He buckles his seatbelt, blows into a tube to accelerate, and to turn to the right; he turns his head and looks right. Part of a partnership with Arrow Electronics, the semi-autonomous Corvette has allowed Schmidt to feel the same rush of adrenaline that he’s craved since his Indy 500 days. “I want to show people that it is possible to push the limits, I have done it my entire life and I don’t plan on stopping,” said Schmidt.
The Corvette is proof of something else too: how technology is improving the lives of people with disabilities. “You can really solve any problem that you put your mind to if you have the right help and support,” he added.
“The key to life is finding that passion and discovering what makes you get up every morning. Keep adding passions throughout your life and do fantastic things. The reward is worth the battle. I am thankful for those around me, and for the great People at Southwest for making it easy to do the things I love,” said Schmidt.
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Southwest Customer and Community Champion @elijahbrantley skips the check-in desk and heads towards the gate where his 6:00 a.m. flight from Charlotte (CLT) to Nashville (BNA) is about to depart. With moments to spare, he is welcomed onboard just by scanning his phone; no paper ticket required. “In an early flight, every second matters, this is one less stop I have to make,” added @elijahbrantley.
Brantley is a part of The Southwest Community Champions Program, where the top contributors or “Champions” from The Southwest Airlines Community lead the conversation, answer questions, author stories, and foster meaningful conversations.
Since 2013, the Southwest Mobile Boarding Pass has helped Southwest Customers and many of our Community Champions get through the airport in an easier and greener way. It is just one of the ways Southwest is trying to improve the Customer Experience while keeping the environment in mind. At Southwest, we are conscious of our environment, and we want our Customers to feel the same.
Customers who choose this option can bypass printing a paper boarding pass at their home, office, or at the airport. Instead, they can simply scan the barcode on their smartphone at airport security checkpoints and at the gate during boarding. Customers can request a Mobile Boarding Pass at the time of check-in at Southwest.com, the Southwest.com mobile site, or using our Southwest mobile app for iPhone or Android.
For Customers like Community Champion @bec102896, paper tickets are a thing of the past. “It makes travel with my family much easier. A quick scan and boom, you are off to see the world—without all the paper waste,” said @bec102896.
As for the Mobile Boarding Pass, Customers can receive the two-dimensional barcode along with Customer and flight information in three ways. Customers can choose to view in browser, send to their smartphone via e-mail, or send via text message. The pass can be used at the TSA security checkpoint and to board Southwest flights. The Mobile Boarding Pass can be saved to Apple Wallet on iOS and Google Pay on Android for added convenience. For accessibility and personal preference, Southwest still offers paper boarding passes too.
What about the beloved free drink coupons? For Customers who purchase a Business Select Fare and elect to use a Mobile Boarding Pass, their drink coupon eligibility will be noted on the Mobile Boarding Pass. In order to receive the complimentary drink inflight, Customers can simply show the drink coupon portion of their Mobile Boarding Pass to the Flight Attendant. Here’s a pro tip from Community Champion @DancingDavidE: “save the coupon to your wallet on iPhone or Android for your beverage.” To view eligibility, flip to the back of the Mobile Boarding Pass in Apple Wallet or scroll to the bottom of the pass in Google Play.
The Mobile Boarding Pass, with our Customers’ support, has helped Southwest operate more sustainably. Since 2015, we’ve reduced our waste generated in tons by 12.9 percent. Today, nearly 38 percent of the waste we generate is recycled. To learn more about our sustainability practices visit southwestonereport.com.
To find out more about Mobile Boarding Pass or to book your next flight, visit Southwest.com.
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