Low-cost US airline to invest, despite economic slump...
US airline Southwest Airlines plans to hire 4,000 more employees this year, boosting its workforce by about 13 percent as the largest low-fare carrier adds 11 new airplanes and an increase in flights.
The airline will hire 250 pilots, 1,200 flight attendants, 1,000 ground workers and about 1,550 other employees, spokeswoman Linda Rutherford said. Southwest was the only major US carrier that didn't reduce its workforce after the September 11th attacks, as other airlines eliminated more than 90,000 jobs in total.
Southwest maintained its flight schedule after the terrorist hijackings, which worsened a decline in air travel during the recession and caused most airlines to cut capacity and fares. The Dallas based company was also the only major carrier to make money last year even before the $5 billion in post September 11 federal cash aid to airlines.
The hiring plan shows the success of ?an airline that is making money even in these difficult times and has flexible work rules and low costs,? said Ray Neidl, an ABN Amro analyst.