Southwest Airlines has started a campaign to get the Wright Amendment, a 26-year-old federal law, overturned.
This is from the Albuquerque Journal, and basically describes what the Wright Amendment is:
At issue is the Wright Amendment, which bars Southwest from offering tickets for sale, or providing transport between, Dallas Love Field and any point beyond Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas, New Mexico, Mississippi and Alabama.
For example, a Southwest customer wishing to fly from Dallas to Phoenix has to buy one ticket from Dallas to Albuquerque or El Paso and another ticket from either of those cities to Phoenix.
The amendment, passed in 1979, prohibits Southwest from selling or advertising a Dallas-to-Phoenix flight even as a one-stop flight.
Southwest’s campaign is called "Set Love Free" (http://www.setlovefree.com/) .
To me, this is a great idea, as I never truly got the whole Wright Amendment idea, which basically trys to force airlines to fly in and out of the mega-airport DFW. The only reason why American Airlines wants to keep the Wright Amendment is because they feel that allowing Southwest to fly unrestricted from Love Field would pose a major risk to them. Also anyone who has even flown with Southwest knows what a great airline they are. Southwest is what has give me, a semi-poor college student the ability to fly places and see Family and friends that I otherwise would not be able to see.
Take for example, I am thinking about going up to Wichita, KS where I have family. My problem is that Southwest does not fly into Wichita. The Wichita airport has only about 2 airlines (American and Continental). The cheapest flight I have been able to find from Albuquerque to Wichita is an American Airlines flight that connects at DFW and costs around 400 after all taxes and everything are added in.
Ok, for fun, I set up a little experiment to see how much money I would save if I flew Southwest vs. American. All trips are departing Albuquerque July 13, 2005 and returning to Albuquerque on July 19, 2005. All fairs are after taxes and fees & in US dollars.
|Albuquerque (ABQ) to Baltimore (BWI)
American Airlines (One Stop): 326.00
Southwest (One Stop): 227.50
|Albuquerque (ABQ) to Las Vegas(LAS)|
American Airlines (One Stop): 498.30
Southwest (Non-Stop): 209.90
|Albuquerque (ABQ) to Los Angeles (LAX)
American Airlines (One Stop): 525.30
Southwest (Non-Stop): 206.90
|Albuquerque (ABQ) to New Orleans (MSY)|
American Airlines (One Stop): 363.80
Southwest (One Stop): 238.30
|Albuquerque (ABQ) to St. Louis (STL)
American Airlines (One Stop): 286.80
Southwest (One Stop): 224.30
|Albuquerque (ABQ) to Dallas Fort Worth (DWF) / Love Field (DAL)*|
American Airlines (Non Stop): 199.90
Southwest (Non Stop): 186.40
|(* Southwest does not fly into DFW, but fly’s to the same city via Love Field.)|