letter from gary
a letter from gary kelly
chairman, president and ceo
A Purpose Bigger Than Ourselves
At Southwest Airlines and AirTran Airways, we don’t view ourselves as a Company of planes; we are a Company of People. We are committed to a common Purpose: to connect you to the important moments in your life through friendly, reliable, and low-cost travel.
That Purpose fuels our passion in serving more than 100 million Customers a year. In fact, you might be surprised to learn that we carry more passengers in the U.S. than any other airline—one in four domestic travelers flies on Southwest. That’s a sacred responsibility that we don’t take lightly. Three words from our Purpose—friendly, reliable, low-cost—serve as guideposts in all that we do each day to take care of our Customers and connect you to those important moments.
By maintaining our low costs, we are an airline our Customers can afford to fly. Before Southwest took to the skies nearly 43 years ago, only 10% of Americans had ever flown on a plane. Today, that number is well over 85%. Our low costs boosted travel, increased demand, made our competitors lower their prices, and democratized the skies. Today, our commitment to low fares is as strong as ever. We don’t nickel-and-dime our Customers like the other guys. In addition to our everyday low fares, you can still check two bags for free on Southwest, and we don’t charge a fee if you have to change your flight.
By reliably delivering on our promise, we are an airline you can trust. We have one of the best Safety records in the industry; it’s our top priority at all times. We also boast a solid track record for delivering you to your destination ontime, with your bag, and with a smile.
By offering the friendliest Customer Service in the industry, we are an airline that our Customers have come to LUV. This year we were ranked No. 1 in Customer Service by the Airline Quality Ratings, and we consistently receive the lowest number of Customer complaints to the Department of Transportation.
Other airlines can claim to connect People, but only Southwest can do it with friendly, reliable, and low-cost travel. (The magic is in the “and.”) We provide a unique service combination, and our People are the secret to delivering on our one-of-a-kind Brand. Because of you, our valued Customer, we have a Purpose bigger than ourselves.
Chairman, President and CEO