Southwest to add seven new routes from Washington National

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Updated with frequency details from Southwest

Southwest Airlines will add seven new routes to its network from Ronald Reagan Washington National airport with the 27 slot pairs it bought from American Airlines.

Akron-Canton, Chicago Midway, Dallas Love Field, Indianapolis, Nashville, New Orleans and Tampa will receive new nonstop flights to Washington National by 2 November, the Dallas-based carrier says. It will also add additional flights on its existing routes to Houston Hobby and St. Louis.

Southwest will begin service six-times daily to Chicago Midway, three-times daily to Nashville and two-times daily to New Orleans on 10 August. It will add two-times daily service to Tampa and three additional flights for a total of nine to Chicago on 30 September. Finally, twice daily Akron-Canton, five-times daily Dallas Love and twice daily Indianapolis service will begin on 2 November.

Houston Hobby service will increase to four-times daily from two and St. Louis to three-times daily from two on 2 November, as well. Frequency between Washington National and Milwaukee will decrease to three-times daily from four the same day.

“By year's end, we'll offer 44 daily departures to 14 destinations from Reagan National airport," says Ron Ricks, executive vice-president and chief legal and regulatory officer at Southwest, in a statement. “We've been interested in expanding at Washington National for a long time.”

Southwest bought the 27 slot pairs from American as part of an auction of 52 pairs that it divested as part of its merger with US Airways that was overseen by the US Department of Justice (DOJ).

The carrier will operate its existing schedule and the additional flights from six gates in terminal A at Washington National, following a move by JetBlue Airways to terminal B/C that is expected in June.

Southwest and its subsidiary AirTran Airways fly to Atlanta, Austin, Fort Myers, Houston Hobby, Kansas City, Milwaukee and St. Louis from Washington National, Innovata FlightMaps Analytics shows.

However, the US Department of Transportation (DOT) has solicited proposals for the slot pair that Southwest uses for its Kansas City flight and may reallocate it to another carrier later in 2014.

Southwest will compete with US Airways from Washington National to Akron-Canton, Indianapolis and New Orleans, American Airlines and US Airways to Nashville, and JetBlue Airways and US Airways to Tampa, according to Innovata. No carriers fly between National and Chicago Midway, however, American and United Airlines fly between National and Chicago O'Hare.