AirTran: A Low Cost Entity Committed to Excellence
AirTran Airways is one of many airlines in the United States of America that fall under the low cost airlines segment. It has a large fleet of Boeing aircraft that help it to operate nearly 700 daily flights across the length and breadth of the country. It has faced a number of financial challenges over time and has had to adopt several methods in order to consolidate its assets and remain financially sustainable.
In the last few years, there have been changes in management as well as management policies within the airline but it has always maintained a steadfast focus on the sustainability of growth. The enterprise worked hard to survive in an increasingly competitive segment, but a spate of failed acquisition bids stifled its attempt to become bigger than some other players in the market. The airline was left with limited resources after the phasing out of the original lot of aircraft and no new investment was coming forth that could have fuelled growth.
However, true to its fighting spirit, AirTran kept on adding staff to cater to new routes that ventured as far as Mexico and in the Caribbean. Just before ceasing operations in 2010, it was flying 25 million passengers annually, which is a remarkable record for a low cost airline. Finally, in September 2010, the airline was acquired by Southwest Airlines, which was a major player in the low cost airline segment. Apart from the assets, it gave Southwest access to a lot of new routes and hubs that were previously not part of its repertoire.