Southwest Airlines Co. (NYSE: LUV) today announced that it will concentrate its future service to Cuba in Havana (HAV) and will cease operations in both Varadero (VRA) and Santa Clara (SNU) at the end of day on Monday, Sept. 4, 2017. Southwest® currently serves Havana twice daily nonstop from Ft. Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) and once daily nonstop from Tampa International Airport (TPA) and has applied with the U.S. Department of Transportation for a third daily roundtrip between Ft. Lauderdale and Havana.
"Access to Cuba remains important to our South Florida Customers and this shift in focus will answer their continued calls for our low-fare value with bags fly free1 in serving the Cuban capital," said Steve Goldberg, Southwest Airlines Senior Vice President of Ground Operations and lead Executive sponsor for Florida. "Our decision to discontinue the other Cuba flights comes after an in-depth analysis of our performance over several months which confirmed that there is not a clear path to sustainability serving these markets, particularly with the continuing prohibition in U.S. law on tourism to Cuba for American citizens."
The carrier is reaching out to Customers who held reservations for travel involving Varadero and Santa Clara on Sept. 5 and beyond to offer refunds of purchased tickets in those markets.