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Bussiness and Management

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groups (A, B, C) and a number when they check in. The number refers to where they stand in line at the gate.
Group A boards first, and once on board, passengers may sit anywhere they like.
Southwest grows by entering new markets other airlines overprice and underserve. The company believes it can bring fares down by one-third to one-half whenever it enters a new market, and it expands every market it serves by making flying affordable to people who could not afford it before. Southwest currently serves 68 cities in
35 states, usually secondary cities with smaller airports that have lower gate fees and less congestion —another factor that leads to faster turnaround and lower fares.
Another unique cost savings strategy is Southwest's decision to operate Boeing 737s for all its flights. This simplifies the training process for pilots, flight attendants, and mechanics, and management can substitute aircraft, reschedule flight crews, or transfer mechanics quickly.
Jet fuel is an airline's biggest expense. According to the industry's trade group. Air Transport Association, jet fuel now accounts for 40 percent of an airplane ticket versus 15 percent just eight years ago. Southwest's biggest cost savings technique and competitive advantage has long been its program to hedge fuel prices by purchasing options years in advance. Many of its longterm contracts allow the airline to purchase fuel at $51 per barrel, a significant savings especially during the oil shocks of the 2000s that drove oil past $100 per barrel.
Analysts estimate that Southwest has saved more than
$2 billion with fuel hedging.
Because lighter planes use less fuel. Southwest rriakeis its planes lighter by, for instance, power-washing their jet engines to remove dirt each night. It carries less water for bathrooms and has replaced its seats with lighter models.
Southwest consumes…...

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