Southwest Airlines launched three new nonstop international routes from Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) Nov. 5, including its first daily service to British Overseas Territory Turks and Caicos Islands’ Providenciales International Airport (PLS).

The Dallas-based carrier also introduced new service between FLL and airports in San Jose, Costa Rica (SJO) and Punta Cana, Dominican Republic (PUJ) the same day, part of the company’s stated efforts to increase brand awareness and foreign points of sale in the Caribbean and Central America.

“We’re investing in the Caribbean with an optimistic outlook on travel and tourism” Southwest SVP-operations and hospitality Steve Goldberg said.  “While a courageous recovery continues, the best thing many can do now is simply take a vacation, make a business trip, and contribute to a greater awareness that the Caribbean is back in business.”  

Southwest and Florida’s Broward County embarked on the renovation and modernization of FLL’s Terminal 1 in June 2015, and in July 2017 completed construction of a new concourse A for the terminal. The concourse has five gates, three of which are for Southwest. Fort Lauderdale-based Silver Airways will also utilize the concourse. The carrier expects to have 75 daily flights from Fort Lauderdale by the end of the year, 18 of which will be international. The airline expects to handle 750,000 annual passengers at the new international concourse.

The renovation plan calls for providing connectors to Terminal 1’s three concourses A, B and C post security and creating one centralized security checkpoint for all three concourses on the ticketing level. According to FLL, the Terminal 1 project is slated for completion in the fourth quarter of 2017.

Mark Nensel mark.nensel@penton.com