Southwest Airlines files application to offer nonstop service between LAX, Mexico beach destinations

Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) has filed an application with the US Department of Transportation (DOT) to offer international service from Los Angeles International Airport to Cancún, San José del Cabo/Los Cabos and Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, the company said.

The application requests extra-bilateral authority from the DOT to allow the carrier to sell and serve the new markets during an interim period while the governments of the United States and México take final diplomatic steps to bring the pending liberalized aviation agreement between the two nations into force.

According to projections by the Campbell-Hill Aviation Group, an economic analysis firm retained by Southwest, Southwest´s new competition in the three LAX — México markets could reduce fares more than 20 percent below average fares on the routes, increase total traffic on the routes by more than 500,000 passengers each year, and save passengers USD50 million annually in reduced fares.

Southwest Airlines operates more than 3,900 departures a day during peak travel season across a network of 97 destinations in the United States and seven additional countries.