DALLAS – April 3, 2012 –Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV) announced today a new national partnership with the most respected editorial voice in golf – The Sports Illustrated Golf Group (SIGG). The relationship will center around creating fun and unique experiences for golf fans tailored to the four largest U.S.-based championships of 2012 (the Masters, U.S. Open, PGA Championship and Ryder Cup) entitled Sports Illustrated at the Majors.
At each of these four major tournaments, instructors from the highly respected network of Golf Magazine’s Top 100 Teachers will offer swing tips, while journalists and celebrity guests will provide instant tournament analysis from the stage right in front of fans. Golf fans also will be able to attend the “SI at the Majors” presented by Southwest Airlines, where Sports Illustrated will enhance its usual full coverage of golf’s majors by employing additional expert voices and on-site coverage on Golf.com and SI.com.
“The partnership makes perfect sense for an airline that golfers love because Golf Bags Fly Free* on Southwest. Our Customers have told us repeatedly they would rather spend their hard-earned dollars on activities at their destination rather than on bag fees,” Southwest Chief Marketing Officer Dave Ridley said. “Golf fans (and sports fans in general) are already familiar with seeing the Southwest Airlines brand in conjunction with televised sports events. Just as fans are passionate about their favorite teams, Southwest is passionate about providing unbeatable value and an enjoyable flying experience for Customers.”
In addition to the stage locations at each of the four tournaments, Southwest Airlines will host an additional event in conjunction with Sports Illustrated at Piedmont Park in Atlanta to celebrate the airline's new service to the Atlanta market. April 5 through 8, golfers of all abilities will be able to experience a quickened heartbeat and shaking hands while standing over a pressure-packed putt in front of a hushed gallery.
A championship-style putting green, complete with scoreboard, caddies and marshals, is being constructed so that professionals are not the only ones allowed “inside the ropes” at a major. Every visitor will have a chance to register for a drawing to win a trip to the next Sports Illustrated at the Majors experience in San Francisco. Also, those who make the designated championship putt of the day will be entered into a daily drawing for two roundtrip tickets to any Southwest Airlines destination. A large video screen will show the broadcast coverage of 2012’s first major from Augusta so that Atlantans can enjoy watching their favorite tournament of the year with their friends in a beautiful outdoor setting.
Here is the schedule and locations for the Sports Illustrated at the Majors presented by Southwest Airlines. For details you can also visit www.GOLF.com/majors.
• The Masters, April 3-8
Augusta: National Hills Shopping Center
• US Open, June 14-17
San Francisco: Union Square Park
• PGA Championship, Aug. 9-12
Kiawah Island, S.C.: Freshfields Village
• Ryder Cup, Sept. 27-30
Chicago: Navy Pier
* First and second checked bags. Weight and size limits apply. A golf bag may be substituted for one checked bag.
About Southwest Airlines Co.
Now in its 39th consecutive year of profitability, Southwest Airlines continues to differentiate itself from other low-fare carriers—offering a reliable product with exemplary Customer Service. Southwest Airlines is the nation's largest carrier in terms of originating domestic passengers boarded and has acquired AirTran Airways, now a wholly owned subsidiary of Southwest Airlines Co. Southwest serves 73 cities in 38 states and remains one of the most honored airlines in the world known for its commitment to the triple bottom line of Performance, People, and Planet. To read more about how Southwest is doing its part to be a good citizen, visit southwest.com/cares to read the Southwest Airlines One Report(TM). Based in Dallas, Southwest currently operates more than 3,200 flights a day and has more than 37,000 Employees.
About the SI Golf Group
Golf Magazine is at the core of the most powerful media company in the game, the SI Golf Group. The magazine, which delivers a circulation of 1.4 million golf enthusiasts with a readership of 6.1 million, is golf’s most widely read publication and provides the best instruction, equipment reviews and travel coverage in the category. With the combined resources of Golf, SI Golf+ (the No. 1 golf weekly publication) and Golf.com (the highest trafficked golf website). The SI Golf Group delivers a monthly audience of 12.6 million avid golfers and fans.
About Sports Illustrated
Sports Illustrated is a multimedia sports brand that takes the consumer into the heart and soul of sports. The Sports Illustrated franchise is anchored by the weekly magazine—the most respected voice in sports journalism, reaching a weekly audience of nearly 22 million adults—and www.SI.com, the magazine’s 24/7 sports news website that delivers more than 300 original stories to its users each week. The franchise also includes Sports Illustrated Kids (www.sikids.com), a monthly magazine targeted to kids age 8 and up; GOLF Magazine and www.Golf.com; www.FanNation.com, a social networking and sports-news aggregation platform; SI Presents, the magazine’s specialty publishing division; as well as SI Books, SI Pictures, SI Productions, SI Digital and SI Events. Founded in 1954, Sports Illustrated is a division of Time Inc., the world’s leading magazine publishing company and a subsidiary of Time Warner.
Southwest Airlines Communication
Emily Christopher, Sports Illustrated, (212) 522-8473, Emily_Christopher@timeinc.com