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Southwest Airlines Announces Expansion in Memphis for AirTran Subsidiary

Southwest Airlines announced in early February that it will be adding additional service in Memphis through its AirTran Airways Subsidiary. In a national release by Southwest, the company detailed four new Memphis flights to three new AirTran routes; twice a day between Memphis and Chicago Midway, and once daily service between Memphis and Orlando, and Memphis and Baltimore/Washington. The new flights will begin service on August 11, 2013, and are in addition to the current five daily non-stops on AirTran between Memphis and Atlanta. The new service is available for booking immediately for flights on or after August 11.

Upon hearing about the new service, following a series of meetings at Southwest corporate offices the week before, Larry Cox, President and CEO of the Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority stated, “We are very excited that Southwest has decided to add three new city pairs for Memphis to fly under its AirTran subsidiary. Many years of relationship building with Southwest are paying off. This service addition reinforces the message given to Memphians last September by Southwest Executive Vice President Ron Ricks when he stated ‘We’re here. We’re here to stay … You’ve got to be patient with us, and things will not happen overnight.” more »

Two Airplanes ...

Two Airplanes ...

Jack Sammons Elected Chairman of Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority Board

Airport Commissioner Jack Sammons was voted the new Chairman of the Airport’s Board of Commissioners by acclamation of his fellow board members at the board meeting on January 17.

Sammons is the newest member of the Board, having been appointed in 2010. His special committee assignments include Government Affairs, General Aviation & Ground Transportation, and chair of Planning & Development.

Sammons knows the Memphis airport and the travel industry well as a “road warrior” who logged nearly 200,000 miles in air travel last year. Sammons becomes only the fourth chairman ever of the Airport Authority, following the first chairman Ned Cook, Jim McGehee and Arnold Perl, who retired in December after serving as a member since 1983 and chairman since 1996. In January, the Authority also established a five-year term limit for the chairman position. Sammons will serve out the remainder of Perl’s term which lasts through 2016, and be eligible to run for an additional term at that time. more »

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Rental Car Companies Move to the New Ground Transportation Center

Effective March 6, the rental car companies at Memphis International will move to their new home on levels one and two of the new seven-level Ground Transportation Center. Rental car companies will be able to house all of their customer service operations within the Center, including rental operations, return services and quick-turnaround vehicle service. More than 1,200 rental car spaces are available. The complete auto rental capabilities will eliminate any need for shuttle buses for the rental car companies, creating a more environmental approach to rental car services and reducing overall congestion along the airport roadways. Moving from the old rental car facilities along Democrat Road will free space for future expansion and development as needed by the airport or its service partners.

The new rental car customer service areas are just a convenient ride to and from the terminal along an 840-foot-long series of moving sidewalks, under attractive weather protecting fabric canopies, and landscaped for maximum visual effect. The moving walkways occupy space down the center of the three-level parking deck. more »

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American Airlines Unveils its New Look

In January, American Airlines unveiled its new logo and exterior for its planes. It is the first new look for the airline in more than 40 years.

“Our new logo and livery are designed to reflect the passion for progress and the soaring spirit, which is uniquely American,” said Virasb Vahidi, American’s Chief Commercial Officer. “Our core colors — red, white and blue have been updated to reflect a more vibrant and welcoming spirit. The new tail, with stripes flying proudly, is a bold reflection of American’s origin and name. And our new flight symbol, an updated eagle, incorporates the many icons that people have come to associate with American, including the ‘A’ and the star.”

more »

American Airlines new look

Memphis International to Join TSA Pre✓™ Program

Memphis International Airport is included in this year’s expansion of the Transportation Security Administration’s TSA Pre✓™ program to medium-sized airports.

According to the TSA, the program should become operational at MEM by April 1st.

As described on the TSA website, TSA Pre✓™ is an expedited screening initiative that is expanding to airports across the country. TSA has partnered with U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) as well as U.S. air carriers as part of this initiative. Certain frequent travelers from Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, United Airlines, US Airways and certain members of CBP’s Trusted Traveler programs are eligible to participate when they are booked on a participating airline. more »

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Memphis Selected as a Top 10 Best Airport for Business Travelers

I Fly First Class (IFFC) has named Memphis International as their choice for the fifth best airport for first class travelers. In a news release issued by the travel service and web resource for first class travelers, Memphis was recognized for its excellent cancelled-flight and delayed-flight scores. This is an area in which Memphis International has always rated among the best in the country.

“We are pleased to again be recognized at Memphis International for our on-time flight operations and the airport’s ease of use,” said Larry Cox, President and CEO of the Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority. “Our focus and performance in these areas is paramount in our dual goals of being known as the most efficient airport but also the airport with the most affordable fares. Airlines look to efficiency and ease of operation as they expand.” more »

iFlyFirstClass

Airport Statistics Highlights

  December 2012 December 2011 Year-to-Date 2012 Year-to-Date 2011
Total Passengers 418,413 628,888 6,753,186 8,737,641
Total Cargo Handled (lbs) 771,883,905 793,815,439 8,855,559,128 8,635,964,038
Total Aircraft Operations 20,827 25,688 271,127 311,791

For the full statistical report on Memphis International Airport, click here.