We have a timeline for when Southwest Airlines plans to restore its full international schedule. It looks like the airline is anticipating being able to resume all international service by 2021. Southwest's CEO has announced that international service will be reestablished gradually. However, the expectation is that flights to all of Southwest's 15 destinations throughout the Caribbean and Central America will be 'back in business' by the early part of 2021.
It has been revealed that Southwest is relying on a special insider team to monitor the readiness for each destination to begin welcoming travelers again. That means that the 'readiness' timeline for each destination is very much in flux based on the developments that occur between now and the start of 2021.
A big part of each destination's readiness level will be based on the regulations that have been put in place by national and local authorities. However, Southwest's CEO is making it clear that the base criteria the airline is using to determine which destinations are ready will cover the safety of people, crew and customers. In addition, Southwest will be examining things like the quality of the experience that can be offered to customers. Profitability is another factor that the airline will be looking at as it makes decisions regarding how to proceed with individual routes.
You don't have to wait until the start of 2021 to begin flying to some popular international destinations with Southwest. That's because the airline is already in the process of restoring some of its international flights. Service to destinations like Cancun, Los Cabos, the Bahamas and Montego Bay kicked off on July 1.