Southwest to serve Havana from Ft Lauderdale and Tampa Bay

Southwest Airlines has been preliminarily awarded authority to serve Havana with twice-daily nonstop service from Ft Lauderdale-Hollywood and once-daily nonstop service from Tampa Bay International Airport.

Once approvals are finalised, Southwest confirms it will begin its Cuba service later this year to Havana (HAV), along with previously awarded service to Varadero (VRA) and Santa Clara (SNU). The carrier will have a total of five daily departures from Ft Lauderdale to Cuba – two to Havana, two to Varadero, and one to Santa Clara – plus the one daily departure from Tampa to Havana.

“Our Countdown to Cuba continues with new enthusiasm, and we’re finalising plans to bring our world-famous value and customer service to these emerging US travel markets,” said Gary Kelly, Southwest Airlines chairman, president and CEO. “As the largest carrier of domestic passengers in the United States, these nonstop flights from two of our Florida focus cities will provide high-quality, low-fare service to our customers while also offering convenient connections to Cuba for dozens of US cities across the Southwest network.”

Southwest will soon publish its low fares and flight schedules for Cuba service and intends to begin operations to Cuba later this year. Southwest continues to plan for 2016 year-over-year available seat mile (ASM) growth in the 5%-6% range.

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