Southwest Airlines has announced its initial flight schedules from Sarasota Bradenton International Airport. Flights to Houston, Chicago, Baltimore/Washington and Nashville will begin Feb. 14, 2021. Fares range from $69-$89 for a one-way ticket. Sarasota will be the carrier’s 10th Florida airport, and is also the 10th airport in a list of new places to join the Southwest route map.

"We're deploying our planes and people to places that our customers have desired visiting this coming winter and spring break season,"  Andrew Watterson, Southwest's executive vice-president and chief commercial officer, said in a statement. "Whether dusted with snow or basking in sun, wide-open spaces continue to hold an appeal for all kinds of travelers, all across the map."

Last month, SRQ Airport reported that passenger traffic was 69 percent of what it was in October 2019, with 110,883 passengers traveling through the airport in October 2020 compared to 160,327 in October 2019. Year-to-date passenger traffic is down 35 percent compared to last year, with 1,011,677 passengers using the airport so far in 2020.

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