Photo courtesy of Southwest Airlines.
Southwest Airlines will soon have two permanent air carrier flight slots at Long Beach Airport after American Airlines announced last month that it was reducing service, city officials said yesterday.
Up to this point, Southwest was working with four supplemental slots, which are slots that aren’t being utilized by other air carriers, LGB spokeswoman Cassie Chauvel said.
The service reduction leaves American Airlines with three permanent slots. The air carrier did not provide a reason why it was reducing service at the airport, according to Chauvel.
While JetBlue Airways and Delta Air Lines expressed interest in obtaining the two available slots, officials said a city ordinance states that Southwest is eligible to receive the slots because of their status as a “new entrant carrier” at the airport.
Both JetBlue and Delta will be placed on a waiting list of incumbent air carriers requesting more capacity at LGB should additional flight slots become available, according to a city release.
“As specified in the Resolution, a lottery will be conducted to determine each carrier’s position on the waiting list and they will be advised of flight slot(s) if, or when, they become available for allocation,” the release stated.
Currently, Delta has two permanent slots and two supplemental, and JetBlue has 32 permanent slots and three supplemental.
Southwest Airlines has not yet announced its destinations, according to Chauvel. Its new slots will be made available August 1.
Stephanie Rivera covers immigration and the north, west and central parts of Long Beach. Reach her at [email protected] or on Twitter at @StephRivera88.
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