Southwest to fly to Aruba, Jamaica and Bahamas in July

Southwest confirmed industry speculation by announcing the first international routes it will fly with its own planes.

“We’re here to talk about international flights on Southwest Airlines,” Southwest CEO Gary Kelly said at a Monday morning press conference. “You’re going to get a look at the very first passport stamps our customers will be able to get by flying on Southwest Airlines.”

The first international airports to see regularly scheduled commercial service on Southwest-branded planes will be Aruba, Montego Bay (Jamaica) and Nassau in the Bahamas.

Beginning July 1, the airline will fly to those destinations out of Atlanta (Aruba and Montego Bay), Baltimore/Washington (to all three) and from Orlando (Montego Bay and Aruba).

The carrier promised more routes and cities would be added as the merger integration continues.

Southwest says its AirTran-operated routes will continue for now, but that it will eventually attempt to fold most of those into Southwest-operated service.