Saturday, April 19, 2008

Trying to Understand Southwest Airlines

We really, really would appreciate it if anyone could explain Southwest Airlines to us. Every time we check a Southwest fare, it’s more expensive than one of the Big 6 (5? 4?). There’s no assigned seating. And for anything more than a hop from Albuquerque to St. Louis (and why would we want to do that?) the routings usually seem to make more stops than the Big Guys do. (And Southwest doesn’t even tell you what the stops are, unless it includes a plane change.) What’s keeping them going? Is this just a cult thing that we simply don’t understand? Or are there truly some fares that are significantly cheaper and actually offer better routing? SeatGuru tells us that seat pitch is 32-33 inches and width 17 inches (most U.S. airlines flying similar aircraft – 737s – are 31-32 inches), so there may be 1 inch more leg room. Whee. There’s no video, audio, or other entertainment, even on Southwest’s longest flights. Obviously, we’re planning more domestic travel, and again for some reason we looked into Southwest. We just don’t get it.