Southwest Airlines Announces New Service to Santa Barbara Airport

Hotel deals make 2021 an ideal time to visit “The American Riviera”


Visit Santa Barbara:

Karna Hughes, Director of Public Relations, (805) 966-9222, ext. 112 or [email protected]

Anna Jacobson, Public Relations Manager, (805) 966-9222, ext. 110 or [email protected]         

Santa Barbara, Calif. (December 16, 2020) On December 16, Southwest Airlines announced intent to begin year-round service to Santa Barbara Airport (SBA), with new flights starting as soon as the second quarter of 2021. The airline is expected to announce specific routes in the coming weeks. It’s the first time the popular carrier has connected to Santa Barbara’s regional airport, which is currently serviced by Alaska Airlines, American Airlines and United Airlines.

“Visit Santa Barbara is thrilled to welcome Southwest Airlines to ‘The American Riviera,’” said Kathy Janega-Dykes, president/CEO of Visit Santa Barbara, the official destination marketing organization for the Santa Barbara South Coast. “Southwest has gained the admiration and brand loyalty of fliers throughout the U.S. with its competitive fares and community focus. We look forward to connecting with Southwest’s vast network and welcoming Southwest fliers to Santa Barbara.”

Santa Barbara has long been called “The American Riviera” by travelers, due to its sweeping coastline, distinctive Spanish-influenced architecture and temperate Mediterranean climate. For those who want to travel sooner, Visit Santa Barbara’s Third Night Free deals ( provide a compelling reason to linger longer, with two dozen hotels throughout the region—from luxury five-star properties to economy lodging—offering a third night free for every two nights booked through March 2021.

With its relaxed and welcoming small-town vibe, plus the amenities of a bigger city, Santa Barbara offers the quintessential California experience. Attractions include:

  • Outdoor adventure, from hiking and horseback riding in the foothills to kayaking and sailing
  • 30+ south-facing beaches, from downtown favorites to wild, secluded rambles
  • Easily walkable and bikable streets, with a scenic downtown bordering the waterfront
  • A mile-long State Street Pedestrian Promenade* (*open at least through spring 2021)
  • 200+ eateries, featuring locally grown produce and seafood delicacies like sea urchin
  • More than three dozen world-class wineries in the Santa Barbara Urban Wine Trail
  • Exquisite gardens, museums, cultural attractions and historic landmarks featuring Spanish Colonial Revival architecture, from the Santa Barbara County Courthouse to Stearns Wharf
  • More than 300 days of sunshine

Read more about Santa Barbara, including the latest updates on travel conditions, how to be a healthy traveler during COVID-19, itinerary suggestions and more, at


Santa Barbara has been called “The American Riviera” by travelers for nearly a century. Nestled between mountains and the Pacific Ocean, and surrounded by undeveloped coastline, Santa Barbara is a self-contained paradise. The city’s distinctive Spanish-influenced architecture and lush landscape evoke the topography and aesthetic of the European Riviera but with a carefree California spirit. Simultaneously sophisticated and bohemian, easy-going and energetic, Santa Barbara welcomes visitors with relaxing resorts and hideaways, outdoor escapes, world-class wineries, arts and cultural attractions, and a hyper-local food scene. Santa Barbara is located just 92 miles north of Los Angeles along California’s Central Coast. For travel information and to request a free visitor magazine, visit


Southwest is famous for its philosophy of treating customers honestly and fairly while offering low fares. It is the only major U.S. airline to offer bags fly free® to everyone. In addition, the airline does not charge change fees. In its 50th year, Southwest has differentiated itself with exemplary service to 130 million passengers in 2019. Southwest became the nation’s largest domestic air carrier in 2003 and maintains that ranking based on domestic originating passengers boarded. At its peak of 2019, the airlines operated more than 4,000 weekday departures among a network of 101 destinations in the United States and 10 additional countries.