Southwest Airlines Check-In

Southwest Airlines Check-In

Southwest Airlines Check-In

Checking in to your flight at the earliest is very important more so if you are flying on Southwest. The reason we say this is that Southwest is the only major airline in the US that has a somewhat democratic seat selection policy. Its seats are not sold and allotted on a first-come first serve basis. So, an early check-in means better boarding positions between A and C and seat numbers between 1 and 60. This further increases your chances of getting your preferred seats and gets you earlier access to the overhead luggage bins. The Southwest Airlines Check-In Policy is pretty unique in that sense. In this blog, we discuss the policy in great detail to give you more exciting facts about Southwest Airlines check-ins. So, read on and learn more before you check in to your Southwest flight.

Southwest Airlines Check-In Policy

As we said, the Southwest Airlines Check-In Policy is simple yet unique in certain aspects. Here is what you should know about the policy.

  1. According to the policy rules, the Southwest Airlines check-in window opens 24 hours before departure.
  2. Passengers can check in online through the official website or mobile app or by visiting the airport.
  3. Boarding passes can be downloaded online free of cost or printed at the airport.
  4. The policy ensures that passengers who check in early get a better boarding position and a higher chance of getting their preferred seats.
  5. Southwest also offers EarlyBird Check-In, a bundle, at an additional price on select flights subject to availability. If purchased, Southwest checks you automatically 36 hours before departure.
  6. With EarlyBird Check-In, better boarding positions are assigned to passengers 12 hours before general boarding positions are opened. Since boarding positions are assigned ahead of others, passengers purchasing this pack have greater flexibility in printing their boarding passes at their convenient time.
  7. Southwest Airlines Check-In Policy allows passengers to buy upgraded boarding positions after check-in for a nominal amount.
  8. The policy doesn’t guarantee boarding positions with or without EarlyBird Check-In. Boarding positions depend on fare rules.

Southwest Check-In Made Easy: Online, Mobile App, or Airport Kiosk

Southwest Airlines has made checking in for its flights very easy. The Southwest Airlines Check-In Policy gives you the option to check in online or at the airport. The online method comprises checking in through the official website and the Southwest mobile app. On both platforms, you have the option to check in by logging in with your booking confirmation number and first and last name. The online method is fast and straightforward, and it allows you to download your boarding pass quickly. With online check-in, you also have higher chances of getting assigned your preferred seats. The key here is checking in as early as possible, preferably as soon as check-in begins. Alternatively, you can also check in at the airport kiosks and get your boarding pass printed. 

How Can I check in for an International Flight on Southwest Airlines?

Checking in for your international flight on Southwest Airlines is a bit different from that for a domestic flight, especially if you’re flying to the US. You may require your documents to be physically verified at the airport. Therefore, an online check-in may not be possible in such a case. However, that should not stop you from getting your boarding position confirmed in advance. See if the system allows you to do this online, and seek help from Southwest via phone calls if it doesn’t.

Southwest Airlines Same-Day Change Fees: What to Expect

Southwest Airlines doesn’t charge any fee for flight changes. And the same rule applies to the same-day flight changes as well. You can simply hop on to a new flight earlier or later than your original one without paying any fee on the date of departure as long as your origin and destination are the same. The only exception is the Want to Get Away fare, for which passengers have to pay the fare difference for a same-day change. However, A-list and A-list preferred passengers with Wanna Get Away fares can make same-day changes for free, just like other fares.

Southwest Flight Delayed After Check-In

If Southwest delays your flight significantly after check-in, you can change your flight date and time in the original reservation without any fee up to two times in the next 14 days. If the delayed flight no longer serves the purpose of your travel you can cancel your original reservation and receive a full refund to your original mode of payment.


Southwest Airlines has a flexible check-in policy that gives you the freedom to check in online from anywhere and at the airport. The check-in period begins 24 hours before departure, and you can select seats during check-in. With the Southwest Airlines Check-in Policy in place, you can either download your boarding pass from the website or the mobile app or get it printed at the airport kiosks. You are also allowed to upgrade during check-in. But what sets Southwest apart from other airlines is its EarlyBird Check-In bundle that you can purchase at extra prices on select flights. This pack gives you the additional flexibility of checking in 12 hours ahead of other passengers. So, you have the opportunity to check in 36 hours before departure and a chance to get better boarding positions and, ultimately, your preferred seats. However, Southwest doesn’t guarantee boarding positions to any passenger with or without EarlyBird Check-In. You may also check in at the airport, but going by the fact that Southwest doesn’t sell seats before check-in, it will not be a wise decision.


Ques. Southwest Airlines Same-Day Change Fees: How Much Does It Cost to Switch Flights?

Ans. Southwest does not charge for same-day flight changes. Except for the wants to Get Away, no other fare even pays the fare difference to make same-day switches. In other words, the Southwest Airlines Same-Day Change Fee is zero.

Ques. Southwest Early Bird Check-In: Is It Worth the Money?

Ans. Southwest Airlines, EarlyBird Check-In bundle offers automatic check-ins and promises better boarding positions. It allows passengers to check in 36 hours before departure, which is 12 hours ahead of the opening of the general check-in window. However, despite all the hype, passengers don’t find the bundle really useful. The reason behind that is Southwest Airlines doesn’t offer any guarantee for boarding positions on this pack. So, you pay $15 extra, and who knows! You may end up with a C-boarding position.   

Ques. Can you check in for a Southwest flight early?

Ans. Yes, you can. According to Southwest Airlines’ Check-In Policy, the standard check-in hour begins 24 hours before departure. However, with the EarlyBird Check-In bundle, you can check in 36 hours before departure.

Ques. How Do I Check My Bags or Carry-On?

Ans. On a Southwest Airlines Flight, you can check two free bags online right after check-in through the website or the mobile app. Later, you can get the bag tags printed at the airport kiosks. Through digital bag check-in, you can save time at the airport.

Ques. What Happens if You Miss Check-In with Southwest Airlines?

Ans. If you miss an online check-in, you still have a chance to check in at the airport up to 60 minutes before departure. If you miss that mark, too, you may be denied boarding or deemed a no-show, and all your trips may be canceled.