Today, SeaWorld and Southwest airlines have announced that they are ending their partnership after more than 25 years.
Here is an official statement from Southwest Airlines:
Southwest and SeaWorld have mutually decided not to renew their partnership when the contract expires at the end of the year. Our promotional marketing relationship began in 1988 and was one of the first of its kind – focused on co-marketing opportunities between Southwest passengers and SeaWorld visitors.
The companies decided not to renew the contract based on shifting priorities. Southwest is spreading its wings with new international service, and increased focus on local market efforts. With an increasing international visitor base, SeaWorld is looking to focus on new and growing markets in Latin America and Asia, among others.
The companies will continue to work together through Southwest Vacations. Southwest’s three specialty airplanes will return to the company’s traditional livery.
Southwest and SeaWorld have enjoyed their long relationship, and wish each other continued success.
No official word from SeaWorld or Southwest if this breakup had anything to do with the recent ‘Blackfish’ backlash that SeaWorld has had to endure over the past year.
The three planes that had the special SeaWorld paint schemes have been repainted to a regular Southwest airline paint scheme.
Did you ever get to fly on one of the decked out Southwest/SeaWorld airplanes?