Southwest Attendants Approve Flights Overseas
Southwest Airlines is getting all the pieces in place it needs to start flying to Hawaii, the Caribbean and other destinations that require flying over water. It has the planes. It has the pilots. And now it has the flight attendants. Members of the Transport Workers Union Local 556, which represents the Dallas carrier’s flight attendants, narrowly approved changes to their labor contract that will allow flights to destinations beyond the 48 contiguous states. The union had rejected a previous proposal.
Southwest pilots voted in June to approve overwater flights. The carrier also has started taking possession of an order of new Boeing 737-800s, larger planes better suited for international flights. Building an international presence is a key reason that Southwest acquired AirTran Airways, which serves Mexico and Canada, in 2011. The airline recently began work on an international terminal at Hobby Airport in Houston, and it says it will upgrade its reservation system by 2014 to accommodate international flights. washingtonpost.com