Southwest Airlines Now Accepting Applications From Hospitals And Charities To Participate In 2013 Medical Transportation Grant Program

Airline Continues Providing Much-Needed Travel Assistance of More Than $2.4 Million in 2012

Aug 9, 2012

DALLAS, Aug. 9, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV) today announced a call for applications from hospitals and medical transportation charities across the nation to participate in the carrier's 2013 Medical Transportation Grant Program. Southwest seeks to lessen the burden of travel expenses for families facing serious illness by donating roundtrip airline tickets to nonprofit hospitals and medical organizations. The Medical Transportation Grant Program gives these organizations the freedom to distribute the tickets to patients who must travel for treatment based on their unique circumstances. Hospitals and medical transportation charities can apply online for a grant in Southwest's 2013 Medical Transportation Grant Program by visiting www.southwest.com/medicalgrant now through Sunday, Sept. 30, 2012.

"We have helped make a positive difference in nearly 20,000 patients' lives since we donated our first ticket with the Medical Transportation Grant Program more than five years ago," said Linda Rutherford, Southwest Airlines' Vice President Communication and Strategic Outreach. "Southwest Airlines is proud to provide travel assistance to help these patients receive the medical care they need, and we hope the caring attention of our Employees and the travel assistance helps ease a little bit of the burden."

In 2012, Southwest provided more than $2.4 million in free transportation to more than 70 hospitals and organizations nationwide for patients seeking medical treatment. The program has quadrupled the number of participating hospitals since its inception in 2007 and has donated more than 19,000 tickets to organizations in 26 states. To read a blog post about the Medical Transportation Grant Program, please visit blogsouthwest.com.

"Two children traveling to be fitted for leg braces find hope and relief from Denver Employees willing to go above and beyond to make their trips as comfortable as possible." Southwest is humbled to share excerpts like this one from a few of the families who received complimentary transportation through the Medical Transportation Grant Program in 2012 on the NUTS About Southwest blog.

Visit swamedia.com to view emotional and impactful photographs taken by photographer Robert X. Fogarty and Dear World that help convey the message of hope, the importance of the Medical Transportation Grant program for patients and caregivers, and Southwest's commitment to making a difference.

Each participating hospital and nonprofit has unique guidelines for administration of tickets. To learn about qualifications for travel assistance through designated organizations, please contact the Social Work, Travel/Concierge Service, or Patient Assistance Department at your hospital or nonprofit.

ABOUT SOUTHWEST AIRLINES CO.

In its 42nd year of service, Dallas-based Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV) continues to differentiate itself from other low-fare carriers by providing a reliable product with exemplary Customer Service. Including wholly owned subsidiary AirTran Airways, the Company now serves 103 destinations in 41 states, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, six near-international countries, and employs more than 46,000 People. Visit southwest.com/citizenship to read the Southwest Airlines One Report™ and see how Southwest is doing its part to be a good citizen while underscoring a commitment to the triple bottom line of Performance, People, and Planet.

Southwest Airlines

Southwest Airlines, one of the most honored airlines in the world, is the nation's largest carrier in terms of originating domestic passengers boarded. Southwest currently operates more than 3,400 flights a day and serves the communities around 74 airports in Southwest's network of domestic destinations. To book a flight, visit southwest.com.

AirTran Airways

AirTran Airways, a wholly owned subsidiary of Southwest Airlines Co., has been ranked the top airline in the Airline Quality Rating study three times in the past five years. AirTran offers coast-to-coast and near-international service with nearly 700 flights a day on North America's newest all-Boeing fleet. The airline's low-cost, high-quality product also includes assigned seating and Business Class. To book a flight, visit airtran.com.

SOURCE Southwest Airlines

For further information: Southwest Airlines, +1-214-792-4847