Southwest to Pull Out of Newark, Consolidate at LaGuardia, Citing 737 Max Grounding

By Jesse Sokolow on 25 July 2019
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Southwest check-in kiosks at LaGuardia

Southwest check-in kiosks at LaGuardia

Southwest Airlines said Thursday that it plans to discontinue operations at Newark Liberty International Airport and consolidate its presence in the New York metropolitan area at LaGuardia Airport.

The move is in response to the “extensive delays” in returning the Boeing 737 Max aircraft to service as well as financialresults at Newark that were “below expectations” and is effective November 3, 2019. The airline is also decreasing its capacity growth plans across its network as a result.

“We are taking necessary steps to mitigate damages and optimize our aircraft and resources,” the airline said.

Southwest is one of three U.S. airlines that operates the 737 Max. The other two airlines are American Airlines and United Airlines, but with 34 in the fleet, Southwest has the most at stake.

The airline does not expect the Federal Aviation Administration to allow the aircraft to return to the skies until later this year and it says it would then require several months beyond that point to resume commercial flights with the beleaguered plane.

The airline expects its available seat miles, or ASMs, a measure of passenger capacity, to decrease up to 2% for the year. It had originally expected that figure to grow by 5%.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

Accura News

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