Southwest, United Add Service From Santa Barbara

Credit: Jordan Siemens/Getty Images

Both Southwest Airlines and United Airlines will add routes to Santa Barbara (SBA) in California in June, according to the airport.

SBA said Southwest is adding a new route from California’s capital, Sacramento (SMF). The service will be operated daily.

Southwest started flying from SBA in April 2021, offering a 3X-daily route to Las Vegas (LAS) and daily flights to Denver (DEN) and Oakland (OAK).

In addition, United is resuming a seasonal summer route from Chicago O’Hare (ORD) from June 3. United will operate the route 6X-weekly. “This service will be SBA’s first red-eye flight, departing at 11:45 pm every night except Saturday,” the airport said in a statement.

United also serves SBA from Los Angeles (LAX) and San Francisco (SFO). Both of those routes will see increased capacity this summer, SBA said. American Airlines will also increase capacity to SBA on routes from Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) and Phoenix (PHX), according to the airport.

“The new and increased summer service options are expected to make SBA busier than ever,” the airport said. “SBA experienced a faster than predicted operational recovery starting mid-2021 … The first quarter of 2022 has continued to build from the momentum of last year. In just the last three months, SBA has served just under 180,000 passengers, which is almost three times the passengers coming through SBA this time last year.”

Interim SBA director Brian D’Amour added: “Santa Barbara has enjoyed a strong recovery following significant travel restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic. At the Santa Barbara Airport, monthly passenger counts are expected to exceed pre-pandemic levels throughout the coming months as we anticipate a record year in 2022.”

Aaron Karp

Aaron Karp is a Contributing Editor to the Aviation Week Network.