For the first time ever, Southwest Airlines is operating at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport, as the company launched service at the airport on Sunday.
According to a press release from the Chicago Department of Aviation, nonstop flights began this morning, connecting Chicago to Baltimore, Dallas, Denver, Nashville and Phoenix.
“Southwest’s decision to expand its operations to O’Hare underscores the strength of Chicago’s aviation market and the key role the City will play in the recovery of an airline industry severely impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Mayor Lori Lightfoot said in a statement. “Investing in Chicago’s airport infrastructure is central to our region’s economic recovery and creation of good-paying jobs, making the ongoing implementation of O’Hare 21 projects and recent improvements at Midway more important than ever.”
Southwest has operated exclusively at Midway International Airport since 1985. According to CDA figures, approximately 250 departures a day take place at Midway during peak travel season, making Midway the second-largest airport in the airline’s system.
The first flight at O’Hare landed at the airport this morning from Baltimore, with continuing service to Dallas Love Field.