updated 8/11/2009 4:34:18 PM ET 2009-08-11T20:34:18

Discount carrier AirTran Airways plans to stop flying to and from Newark, N.J., and will give its takeoff and landing slots at the airport there to Continental Airlines in exchange for Continental slots at airports in Washington and New York.

An AirTran executive tells employees in a memo Tuesday obtained by The Associated Press that the carrier's decision to cease operations effective Oct. 25 at Newark-Liberty International Airport will allow it to expand its operations at Washington Reagan National Airport and New York's LaGuardia Airport.

Southwest began flying to LaGuardia in June and would gain entry to National Airport in Washington if its $170 million bid to buy the parent of Frontier Airlines succeeds.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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