Southwest Airlines opens new chapter with international flights

A Southwest Airlines passenger jet prepares to land. (File) (Scott Olson, Getty Images)
A Southwest Airlines passenger jet prepares to land. (File) (Scott Olson, Getty Images)
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Updated: 7/01 11:24 am

DALLAS (AP) — After four decades of expanding to all corners of the lower 48 states, Southwest Airlines flew into new territory on Tuesday — the Caribbean. Specifically, Jamaica, the Bahamas and Aruba.

Southwest is taking over routes flown by AirTran Airways, which it bought in 2011, and plans to eliminate the AirTran brand by year end.

Southwest Flight 1804 left Baltimore-Washington International Airport on Tuesday morning for the airline's first overseas flight — to Oranjestad, Aruba. 

After the first three international destinations, Southwest said it will add service next month to Cancun and Los Cabos in Mexico, and will begin flying to Mexico City and Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic in November.

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