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Early flight check in on Southwest

Discussion in 'Getting There & Getting Around' started by sco5123, Nov 11, 2013.

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  1. sco5123

    sco5123 VIP Whale

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    How does it work? I have never tried checking in 24 hours before my flight, which is an option available.
     
  2. Huddler

    Huddler VIP Whale

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    It is easy and will get you a better boarding position. Plus, if you have to check a bag, you get to go to a much shorter line since you already have your boarding pass and are checked in. Easy to do:

    1. Logon to computer
    2. Go to Southwest Airlines website
    3. Click on your flight in My Travel
    4. Click on Early Check in
    5. Print boarding pass
    6. Start the party early by warming up the old liver with some Yagerbombs.
     
  3. sco5123

    sco5123 VIP Whale

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    Oh I don't have a printer. Can you do it without printing?

    The better boarding position is appealing. But is it true that any one who has A position has paid the $12.50 for early boarding?
     
  4. Huddler

    Huddler VIP Whale

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    You can do early check in and then have them give you the boarding pass when you check your bag. I also think they can read it off your smart phone but I am not sure. Checking in early typically will give you a better position than someone who checks in later. If you want to guarantee a top 20 boarding position, then you pay the extra $12.50. Its worth it for the trips home from Vegas when you are hungover and definitely cant tolerate a middle seat!!
     
  5. sco5123

    sco5123 VIP Whale

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    Thanks for the info Huddler!!
     
  6. merlin

    merlin VIP Whale

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    I always early check in, it's very easy and quick and gets decent boarding #'s most times. For my return flights I check in but dont print them out, when you get to the airport you can print out your own passes at the kiosks - you will have the same #'s as when you originally checked in.

    I have never purchased early boarding and have always been in the first 8 rows, of course i always check in 24 hours early.
     
  7. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    We always check in for the departure flight from home 24 hrs ahead of time and most trips get A boarding w/o paying the $12.50. Coming home I just spend the $12.50 ea. I don't want to deal with getting on line 24 hrs prior.
     
    Christmas
  8. Keyser Soze

    Keyser Soze Low-Roller

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    The cost of early-bird is $12.50. It does NOT guarantee you a top 20 boarding position. Are we talking about the same thing?
     
  9. Keyser Soze

    Keyser Soze Low-Roller

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    You can check-in online 24 hours before your departure time. It will assign you a boarding position.

    You can print immediately, or wait until you arrive at the airport to get your boarding pass. Either way, your boarding position will be the same.
     
  10. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    Maybe the poster is talking about the boarding they sell at the gate, but yes, different and more expensive than the $12.50 EB fee.
     
    Christmas
  11. Keyser Soze

    Keyser Soze Low-Roller

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    Yep, you're probably right. Forgot about that; whatever they call it?
     
  12. keno

    keno obsessed with countdown timers

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    Southwest has a couple of options.

    First, you can just log in 24 hours ahead of your flight and checkin. you may or may not get an 'A' boarding pass. If you are right at the 24 hour mark, you most likely will get an 'A' boarding pass. It might be up in the 40's or 50's, but that still gets you on in the early group.

    Second, you can purchase an Early Bird pass when booking your flight (or before you fly, but not usually the day off flight). With the Early Bird pass, you don't have to check-in online, it will be done automatically for your, 30 hours (or something like that) prior to the departure time. You pay $25 round trip for this, or $12.50 for one way. With this, you will always be in the A group, starting at A16 up to A60. Many times, I've seen mid A40's using this. Nice part, you don't have to worry about checking in.

    Third, you can move up to Business Select and/or be on A-list status. Business Select is the full fare and you get a boarding pass between A1 and A15. You don't have to check in early, you can pretty much do it when you arrive and you'll be in that group. Also, with business select, at many airports you can use the 'first class' security line, often saving quite a bit of time.

    Because of work, i'm now A-list status on southwest, so I don't worry about it anymore, but in the past, I'd always buy the Early Bird for both directions, that way I didn't have to worry about checking in online 24 hours prior. This was especially true of the way home from Vegas, as I'd be stressed/worried about what number i'd get and always check in at near exactly 24 hours prior to departure. That kind of put a damper on my last day, so EB solved that issue for me.
     
  13. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    Good info Keno, but one correction. Buying EB doesn't always get you in the A boarding. Last month, EB got me B-9 for my $12.50.
     
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  14. sco5123

    sco5123 VIP Whale

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    Awesome info guys.
     
  15. BeeeJay

    BeeeJay President of The Red Lobster Hostess Satisfaction

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    When EB first started it seemed like I got A16-A20 quite a bit, but this past year I was getting some worse options. I don't think I've done much worse than higher A30's though. A lot of A25-A35.

    Since I've gotten A List it hasn't really been much better than EB, just don't have to pay the $25. I wonder what ever happened to all those EB's I had already booked when I made A LIst---never saw a refund. LOL.
     
  16. keno

    keno obsessed with countdown timers

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    Yeah, i'm not surprised. More and more people doing EB now.. :(

    Since I got A-list, I haven't had to worry about it as much. They have always said that EB is based on when you purchased EB. So, the further in advance you purchase EB, the more likely you get boarded in the A group. To make sure you get at the front of the line, you need to upgrade to Business Select.

    By the way, A-list isn't all it's cracked up to be. It means I have to be on a plane WAY too much up and down the West Coast. I'd much prefer to not have status and not get on planes as much.
     
  17. uli_1515

    uli_1515 Low-Roller

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    We did not purchase it last time. On the way to Vegas we got B- (small number) on the way home we got C- Largest number they offered. I just went up to the desk and upgraded to business class for $40 bucks. Then I went from C- One Million to A-2. I boarded and just threw my wifes purse on her seat and did a forest gump until she got on. Dead Last.
     
  18. Starz22

    Starz22 Low-Roller

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    I always pay for the EB. With the EB they check me in 36 hours before my flight. I don't have to do anything but print out my tickets at home. I have never gotten outside of A boarding...but have been A-49-50. I arrive at MKE...park...get shuttled to SW doors, tip the driver...check my bags curbside at not cost,tip my bag checker (makes me feel like I'm already in Vegas) and head to my gate. I love Southwest. I have never had any issues with them.
     
  19. Starz22

    Starz22 Low-Roller

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    Ok...this kinda annoys me. $12.50 isn't a lot to pay to get a better chance at prime seating. You'r not paying for luggage,why not pay for the wife to? It bugs me to see people holding seats. This is why SW will stop doing this and make you pay even more for assigned seating. I do believe this is why more people are choosing SW over other airlines. You pay a whole 12.50 rather than 100 bucks each to get a desired seat.
     
  20. Chuck2009x

    Chuck2009x VIP Whale

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    I understand what you're saying, but you have to consider the math and what has happened with EB over time.

    For me, there's only 3 seats on a Southwest plane that I want - a window seat in one of the exit rows.

    I book early, but I also book cheap, which puts me in a lower EB status.

    As more and more people started buying EB, it went from having a really good shot at a good seat to just having a chance at a good seat.

    So instead of paying $25 for a chance at his desired seats, he's paying $40 at the gate to almost guarantee them.
     
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