Southwest Puts Spring and Fall Flights on Sale for As Low As $50 Each Way

To celebrate its 50th anniversary this year, Southwest Airlines is putting several routes on sale with prices starting at — you guessed it — $50 each way.

For just $50, passengers will be able to fly nonstop from Chicago to Nashville, or from Los Angeles to San Francisco, San Jose, Tucson, or Reno. Or, for $76 each way, travelers can escape from Austin to New Orleans. Prefer to leave the heat and humidity behind? Try Austin to New York LaGuardia for $132 each way.

Sale prices are valid for travel between May 3 and May 26, and again in the fall from Sept. 7 through Nov. 5. You'll have to purchase at least 21 days in advance and navigate blackout dates around summer holidays. Visit the Southwest website for the fine print, and remember the airline still doesn't charge change or baggage fees.

This year marks the Texas airline's 50th year in business, and it has been celebrating with seasonal flight sales all year long.

The airline started as a cocktail napkin sketch in San Antonio in 1966, when founders Herb Kelleher and Rollin King met for drinks at the St. Anthony hotel and started talking about a low-fare airline that would make it a lot easier to travel across Texas.

According to the Southwest website, at the time, "Everyone knew that traveling between San Antonio, Dallas, and Houston was a royal pain."

Meena Thiruvengadam is a Travel + Leisure contributor who has visited 50 countries on six continents and 47 U.S. states. She loves historic plaques, wandering new streets and walking on beaches. Find her on Twitter and Instagram.

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