HOLLISTER, Mo. -- Southwest Airlines announced Monday that service to and from Branson Airport will start March 9, 2013, offering daily flights to three destinations from the privately-owned airport.
In a news release that followed a post that was later pulled on its Nuts About Southwest blog, the airline said it would offer daily nonstop flights to Dallas, Chicago Midway and Houston Hobby, as well as weekly Saturday service between Branson and Orlando, paving the way for service to and from 67 cities that Southwest already serves.
As part of the new service, Southwest said it would phase out AirTran's daily nonstop flights between Branson and Atlanta, as well as convert AirTran's weekly Orlando flight to Southwest.
Southwest Airlines' website offers a $79 one-way fare to Branson, available for purchase now through Sept. 6, to travel March 9 through April 12.
Southwest officials scheduled a 5 p.m. announcement at the Branson Landing fountain to announce the new service. Gov. Jay Nixon and a host of other officials, as well as Branson entertainers, were on hand for that announcement.