Four months after merging, Alaska Airlines and Virgin America guests are seeing more and more benefits. Today, the combined company announced big growth at Dallas Love Field with four new daily nonstop routes to the West Coast.
New, daily nonstop flights to Seattle; San Diego; Portland, Oregon; and San Jose, California will be operated using the Embraer 175 jet. A second daily, nonstop flight to Seattle will be operated by Virgin America using an Airbus 320 family aircraft. Both airplanes offer three classes of service and are equipped with Free Chat, free movies, premium food and beverages, Wi-Fi and advance seat selection.
“The beauty of operating as a combined company is that we have more fleet flexibility, and can customize our offerings with the right size of airplane in the right market,” says John Kirby, Alaska’s vice president of network planning.
Along with the four new markets, Alaska and Virgin America are streamlining their combined route network from Love Field. This summer, Airbus 320 jets will be replaced with Embraer 175 jets on three daily flights to New York’s LaGuardia Airport. Three daily A320 flights to Reagan National Airport in Washington, D.C. will be replaced by E175s in early 2018.
When planning a market (a common airline term for connecting two cities), airlines look at the size and range of the available aircraft and how many people are flying that route. In the case of centrally located Love Field, many markets would be best served by a comfortable, smaller regional jet.
“Previously, Virgin America didn’t have a regional aircraft to take advantage of mid-sized routes. Our exciting new E175 jet is a perfect match for Love Field,” says Kirby. “Combining our fleets allows us to streamline our flying, which in turn sets us up for more growth in the future.”
|Aircraft type||Number in fleet||Range||Cabin configuration|
|Boeing 737 NG||152||2,900||First Class/Premium Class/Main Cabin|
|Airbus 320/321||63||2,900||First Class/Main Cabin Select/Main Cabin|
|Embraer 175||15||1,700||First Class/Premium Class/Main Cabin|
|Bombardier Q400||52||1,000||Main Cabin|
“What’s next for us at Love Field? I can’t offer any hints right now, but it’s safe to say Alaska Airlines will continue to have a presence in both Dallas airports for the foreseeable future,” says Kirby.
Learn more about the vision for the future of the combined airline: Alaska and Virgin America: Creating an airline people love