ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. — Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) recently cut 8,250 domestic operations for June 2022. It's the latest example of an airline tweaking its schedule amid the uneven recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Dallas-based airline initially had 119,039 domestic flights scheduled for June — even more than the 115,213 flights for the airline in June 2019 — but Southwest recently trimmed that by 6.9% to 110,789, according to data from aviation data firm Cirium Inc. That's still up by 12% compared with the 98,532 domestic flights the airline operated in June 2021.
At St. Louis Lambert International Airport, Southwest is the busiest carrier, with nearly 62% market share in fiscal 2021. The airline now is scheduled to have 2,942 flights departing in June, down 14% from 3,434 flights scheduled just over a week ago.
However the reduced number of flights now planned from Lambert in June is still up nearly 23%, or 545 flights, from the total number of flights in June 2021.
Through February this year, Lambert counted 1.5 million passengers, up 93% from the same period in 2021. In 2019, Lambert counted 15.9 million passengers, a figure that fell to 6.3 million in 2020. Last year, Lambert counted 10.3 million passengers.
The June cancellations are spread out among a large number of destinations from Lambert. The highest number of Southwest’s June cancellations from Lambert are 26 flights each to Boston, Cleveland, Las Vegas, Chicago Midway, and Fort Meyers, Florida. At least 28 destinations from Lambert saw no changes in Southwest's latest schedule for June, including Nashville, Washington National and Denver, each of which continues to have more than 100 flights scheduled that month.
Airlines generally finalize their flying schedules 90 days before departures, but most of the nation's other largest airlines didn't make as large of an adjustment as Southwest in recent weeks.
Read the full story, including interactive graphics and more details on Southwest's St. Louis flights, on the St. Louis Business Journal website.