06.04.21

SCHUMER, IN PERSONAL CALL TO SOUTHWEST CEO, URGES SOUTHWEST AIRLINES TO LAUNCH SERVICE IN SYRACUSE; WITH HANCOCK INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT AS THE ONLY MAJOR UPSTATE AIRPORT WITHOUT SOUTHWEST SERVICE, SCHUMER SAYS AIRPORT IS UNIQUELY POSITIONED AND READY FOR TAKE OFF

Schumer’s Long-Haul Fight For More Affordable Flights To Upstate NY Began By Bringing Southwest To Albany, Rochester & Buffalo, And The Airline Has Never Looked Back; On Call With CEO, Senator Says The Time Is Right To Make A Bold Investment In Upstate Air Service Yet Again 

As Post-Pandemic Recovery Enters Full Swing, Southwest Has Chance To Once More Boost Profits And Benefit From Upstate’s Takeoff By Establishing A Presence At Syracuse Hancock Intl Airport, The Only Major Upstate Airport It Does Not Yet Serve 

Schumer to Southwest: Help Central NY And Your Bottom Line Soar

U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer, in a personal call yesterday with CEO Gary Kelly, urged Southwest Airlines to expand and enhance its presence in Upstate New York by establishing service out of Syracuse Hancock Airport for the first time. Schumer highlighted his long history of working with Southwest and other airlines to bring service to Upstate New York, the success of those routes, and the widely predicted post-pandemic economic boom as proof that establishing service for Syracuse Hancock would be a win-win. Hancock is currently the only major Upstate airport that Southwest does not serve. Central New York residents have been known to drive to Albany, Rochester or Buffalo to take advantage of Southwest’s low fares. Schumer said this additional option would boost competition, availability of low-cost flights, and connectivity for travelers and businesses in Central New York.

“I’ve always strived to bring affordable air service to Upstate New York because it can lift our local economies and connect our state with the rest of the world,” said Senator Schumer. “Like all of us, airlines have spent the last year buckled down. Now we and they are roaring back, and there’s no better way for Southwest to profit from the recovery than by building upon its strong brand Upstate. Starting new flights from Syracuse will position Southwest perfectly for post-pandemic success.”

Schumer has long fought to bring affordable air service to Upstate New York. In fact, Senator Schumer’s first major victory on that front came when he successfully advocated for Southwest to start flights from Albany. Southwest’s profitable decision led many other carriers to begin servicing airports across the state that previously were not considered viable. Since then, Schumer has fought to bring new airlines and routes to Upstate New York cities, including JetBlue to Buffalo, Albany, Syracuse and Rochester. Recently, Schumer successfully pushed JetBlue to establish service to Boston from Syracuse. Lastly, Schumer secured nearly $934 million for New York airports during the pandemic, including more than $29 million to Hancock airport.

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