Something special took to the skies this week on a Southwest Airlines LUV Jet. We normally only share the runway with other airlines and airplanes, but this week, we took fashion models and a cool partnership to new heights! In a truly unique way, we celebrated becoming “The Official Airline of the Magnificent Mile.” To kick off the renewed partnership and The Magnificent Mile Shopping Festival™ presented by MasterCard®, we turned a Boeing 737 into a Runway in the Sky!
Six Factor Models shared the aisle on Flight 904 from New York (LaGuardia) to Chicago (Midway) Monday afternoon, showcasing the latest fall fashions from Macy’s at Water Tower Place on North Michigan Avenue. The big-hit fit for our Customers came when fashion icon Carrie Lannon announced that everyone would be arriving in Chicago with a $100 gift card to spend at a Magnificent Mile retailer!
The Runway in the Sky kicks off The Magnificent Mile Shopping Festival presented by MasterCard. The festival runs from August 22 through September 1. This year’s festival even includes a weekend-long ShopFest on August 23-24 where North Michigan Avenue turns inside out, as retailers greet shoppers with “pop up” displays and interactive experiences. As part of ShopFest, Southwest Airlines will present Andy Grammer live in concert at the John Hancock Center plaza (875 N. Michigan Avenue) at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, August 23. The event is free and open to the public. It will be followed by a meet-and-greet with the singer-songwriter at 2:00 p.m. at Hancock Plaza! We can’t wait to see you there!
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Southwest Airlines launches its first ever international flights on Tuesday, July 1, 2014. The first flight landed in Montego Bay, Jamaica. // Michael Nutting
Yesterday marked an important milestone in Southwest Company history, as we launched inaugural international service to Caribbean destinations: Aruba, Montego Bay, and Nassau. Our international Customers at Baltimore/Washington, Orlando, and Atlanta celebrated alongside our Employees as we kicked off our service to warmer waters. The inaugural flight to Aruba from Baltimore/Washington pushed back ontime at 8:30 a.m., and the rest is literally history. For scenes from yesterday’s launches and landings, check out the video below.
This international milestone was years in the making. Our CEO Gary Kelly has always said, AirTran laid the framework for Southwest’s oversea adventures—this milestone has come quicker than we imagined. By building on AirTran’s steady foundation, we are able to honor the AirTran legacy. Our People from Teams and departments across the network have been working tirelessly to make our international dreams a reality. In addition, we have the best airport partners who ensure our success at locations across the system—now, across the globe. Thank you to everyone whose efforts, large and small, are helping us become the World’s Most Loved, Most Flown, and Most Profitable Airline.
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What if we told you one of our employees was green, cold-blooded, and a little slower than the rest?
Sheldon’s journey to Southwest isn’t your typical hiring story. Instead of being interviewed, Sheldon was adopted into our Family. It began when one of our younger Customers arrived at the airport with her new pet turtle in tow. Unfortunately, due to airport policy, her reptilian friend was unable to join her on her journey. That’s where one of our RSW Ops Agents stepped in and promised to give the little guy a good home. Before she departed on her flight, she insisted that his name be Sheldon.
These days, Sheldon spends his days keeping our RSW Employees company in the office. While he may not be the first choice for a speedy coffee run, he has stolen the hearts of our Employees. Check out our video for an inside look at Sheldon’s Southwest story.
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Sure, professional baseball players have a skill or two. They can swing for the fences and pull off amazing catches, but can they push back a 737? As the Official Airline of the Milwaukee Brewers, we decided to put two of their players to the test. Earlier this week, Carlos Gomez and Jim Henderson of the Milwaukee Brewers traded in their bats for boarding passes and stepped up to the plate, trading places with our Employees at Mitchell General International Airport in Milwaukee. Gomez and Henderson proved that their expertise extends beyond the confines of Miller Field, as they took tickets, marshaled in a plane, rode a tug, and made boarding announcements. They even got a quick tour of the cockpit—but don’t worry, we didn’t let them trade places with our Pilots! As part of this unique event, Southwest was excited to celebrate our national support of Make-A-Wish®. Local wish kid Emery, who recently returned from her wish to go to the Florida theme parks, joined in the day’s festivities. The adorable three-year-old, who is battling leukemia, is a huge fan of airplanes and the Brewers, and Southwest was thrilled to have her join in the fun. While she was excited to meet two players on her favorite baseball team, we think her heart belonged to Bernie Brewer, the team’s infamous mascot who also was on hand for the big day. “It was so great to have players from the Brewers and Southwest come together to make this event happen, and it is awesome to know that they both support Make-A-Wish,” said Sheryl Kranz, Emery’s mother. “We all know how busy they are and to have them come out the same day that they have a game just means the world.” Hats – or baseball caps – off to Gomez, Henderson, Emery and all of our Employees who helped make the day a success. We think the event was a homerun!
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Knowing that Wichita is known as the Air Capital of the World, home to the Boeing Company, Cessna, Raytheon, and Bombardier Aerospace's Learjet division, it certainly made sense that our newest Southwest destination was also the host of the 2013 Air Capital Classic (Web.com Tour) golf tournament this past weekend at Crestview Country Club. As the "Official Airline of Golf Lovers," Southwest Airlines is always looking for fun ways to connect with fans of the game on and off the green, and we were proud to be the Official Airline of the tournament! Last Tuesday, we kicked off our Air Capital Classic fun with help from our friends at Adams Golf. Five Southwest Adams golfers gave up their clubs in order to “trade places” with our Southwest Employees at Wichita Mid-Continent Airport. Ashley Hall, Steve Wheatcroft, JJ Killeen, Troy Merritt, and Rich S. Johnson took tickets, made announcements, unloaded baggage from the aircraft, and even marshaled in an arriving plane. The players had just arrived in town and were thrilled to take a break from preparing for competition to have some fun with our Customers and Employees. Safe to say, the players’ Friendly Customer Service was above par! And we didn’t stop there! Our Employees were onsite at the tournament all four days to help share the Southwest story with more than 20,000 golf fans throughout the week. On top of that, we gave one lucky winner and a guest two roundtrip tickets to experience our Legendary Service and fly off to any SWA destination of their choice! Oh Wichita, LUV is here!
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