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SWA Rant - Early Bird Dropped

Discussion in 'Getting There & Getting Around' started by KRUSSOM, Dec 7, 2016.

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  1. KRUSSOM

    KRUSSOM Tourist

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    Found out last night, that our Early Bird for our flight tomorrow was cancelled!!!!

    Back Story:

    My wife and I booked our flights on 10/11/16 to fly out on 12/8/16. We booked the flights separate due to us using individual points for the flight. We then added the Early Bird for the flight.

    On 11/15/16: The points needed for the flight had gone down, So my wife called SWA to see if we could be credited the point differential. She was told if we did that, we would have to cancel our original flight and rebook and we would lose the Early Bird and have to repurchase. We declined to make any changes and she was told nothing was changing on our original flight. While she is still on the phone, I get emails stating my flight had been changed. My wife asked the guy about it and he confirmed nothing was changed on our original flight.

    12/6/16: Two days before the flight I decide to call and verify that the Early Bird is on my flight since it was asking me to add Early Bird on the mobile app. I am told it is not on the flight and the lady told me she would add it back and that I would be in line where I was on 10/11/16. The option to purchase EB on the mobile app. went away. My wife then calls to check on hers. She is told that they can not add it at this time. All they can do is refund for the original and she can repurchase (and would be in line as of 12/6/16). She escalated to a manager and was told the same thing, but this lady put a note on the account that if the paid upgrade at the gate was available, she could buy that and they would refund the price. We have a layover and we will have to pay the upgrade for both flights.

    Problem is this is a full flight for both legs and we are afraid there will not be availability for the paid upgrade. My wife was told only the gate personnel could change the boarding position at the gate and suggested we speak with them once we get to the gate.

    Has anyone gone through this before? If so, did you have any luck speaking with the gate personnel?
     
  2. bubbakitty

    bubbakitty Doing retirement again and happily so....

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    Joe can probably confirm but I believe he has updated multiple times (keeping the same flight just reduced fair or points) and I don't recall him mentioning having to rebook early bird. But this is all done on-line and not over the phone so that could be the problem.
     
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  3. Cheap G

    Cheap G Tourist

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    I never buy early bird and usually get high A or low B. Just make sure you are online at that 24 hour mark, not a second later . Have fun
     
  4. nostresshere

    nostresshere Mr. Anti Debit Card

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    When you cancel (and then rebook), stuff happens. Just the way it is.

    In this case, you have EB - you can board and save her a seat. Okay - start the blasting about seat saving. I understand the good and bad, and also understand SW has not official policy. So please don't start the rant. There are plenty of threads about this over at Flyertalk.com in the Southwest forum

    No matter what, you are BOTH going to Vegas.
     
  5. Joe

    Joe VIP Whale

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    I just gave up dicking around and book EB for every flight and that is about 10-12 per year. If you cancel a flight you lose EB, but if you change or just rebook because the price went down, you retain your original EB. If you cancel a flight, yes you do lose EB.

    We had a flight booked that we couldn't do because of family issues. So I rebooked using the SWA calendar as far out as I could until we decided where to use that flight, since I had purchased EB. Worked out just fine. A month later, we decided where we wanted to go and just made the flight changes, retaining our EB.
     
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  6. KRUSSOM

    KRUSSOM Tourist

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    What gets me, is we didn't ask to have anything changed on our flight. They took it upon themselves to mess with it when we called to make an inquiry. We are not real concerned on where we sit, we just want to make sure we can sit together since we plan to watch a movie during the flight. If we somehow end up with a C boarding, we will more than likely have to ask someone
    to change seats due to only middle seats being left. Trying to get someone to move to a middle seat is not something that is easy to do. I guess I will bribe with drink tickets.....HAHA.

    Hopefully it works out and we can get our get away started with no issues.
     
  7. NewOrleansSlimm

    NewOrleansSlimm VIP Whale

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    i dont get early bird unless a host booked my trip and does it but I have no problem getting high A or mid B boarding just by checking in early...last trip I completely forgot to check in for return home trip as I was wrapped up at SEMA, cell service was bad to for some reason...about 5 hours later I ended up with early "C"...still got a good seat

    and on completely sold out flights where they are offering vouchers if people will switch to a later flight, I never had an issue upgrading at the counter before boarding when I wanted a low "A" spot
     
  8. Rush

    Rush MIA

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    Apples and oranges. I don't want to play seat roulette with 150 other people right at the 24 hour mark. That is the reason I take the EB. When I am on vacation, I don't want to have to watch the clock.
     
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  9. Chuck2009x

    Chuck2009x VIP Whale

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    I don't understand any of this. If you book with points, and the price/points goes down, you just do Change Flight same as if it was a paid fare. The excess points go back into your account. If you have EB on it, it stays on when you change.
     
  10. bdautch

    bdautch VIP Whale

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    When this happened to me, they gave me a $25 voucher (cost of round trip EB) for future purchases. I angled for a free upgrade to A1-15, and that didn't work. They said voucher or nothing.
     
  11. KRUSSOM

    KRUSSOM Tourist

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    That is the way I thought it worked as well. Whatever the customer service rep did on 11/15, removed our EB without our knowledge. I am sure it will all workout and we won;t let this ruin what will be a much needed Vegas Trip.
     
  12. KRUSSOM

    KRUSSOM Tourist

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    Well....crisis adverted. I ended up with mid A's for both legs. Wife got low B 1st leg, and mid A 2nd leg.

    Now on to an enjoyable few days in Vegas.
     
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  13. Ty

    Ty ?

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    Good to hear. Have fun!
     
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  14. Busyman

    Busyman VIP Whale

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    Good read. I just had a flight drop in price (as well as points) so I canceled and rebooked with points. I will check on my EB.

    Thanks KRUSSOM!!
     
  15. Drambler

    Drambler High-Roller

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    As people have said earlier, the key to keeping early bird is to CHANGE your flight, not cancel it and rebook it. When you log on the site and click change flights, just pick the same flights you are currently on. Once you submit that you will get your credit or points back and retain your early bird position. Clicking cancel will cancel everything.
     
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  16. HuskerBB

    HuskerBB High-Roller

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    Obviously everybody is different but I have never seen the reason to get the earlybird booking in the first place. My wife and I have probably flown 100 SW flights together and have never not gotten to sit together. Now we don't care what row we are in - and it helps that one of us is willing to sit in the middle seat - but at least in our situation I have never seen a reason to pay money for earlybird booking. We do try to check in at or close to the 24 hour point - but on of us just sets an alarm on our phone with the reservation numbers and it takes less than 5 minutes to check in using a smartphone. We used to have to print the boarding passes at the airport - but now they text them to you so we don't even have to do that anymore.

    Like I said we have never flown SW and not sat together. Funny thing is twice in the last 5 years we have had transatlantic flights where we were supposed to have seat assignments - but on one crossing leg each trip those have gotten screwed up and we ended up seated in different rows. No big deal - we just read anyway. Just struck me as ironic that the "seat assignment" flights were the ones where we did not sit together.
     
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  17. Turtleman

    Turtleman VIP Whale

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    I'm sure many Southwest flyers won't appreciate how scary booking and making changes can be for someone who's flown Delta for the last 40 years and grown accustomed to their website and policies. Nonetheless, spotting a small price drop on my outgoing SW flight next month, I just succeeded in putting a whopping $7 in my account for future use. I'm so proud of me, I just had to post. I'm really starting to like this airline!
     
    Annual Halloween trip and son's baptism of fire! Orleans & Gold Coast
  18. nostresshere

    nostresshere Mr. Anti Debit Card

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    Bingo. For some reason folks want to board EARLY.

    As someone pointed out to me once, boarding early can be a downer. You find that seat you want, then gamble as who will sit next to you. If you board more towards the middle, you can pick your seatmate(s).
     
  19. Turtleman

    Turtleman VIP Whale

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    That's an excellent point. However, I prefer a window seat toward the front of the plane and I feel that EarlyBird gives me a better chance of getting it. I also travel with a carry-on bag, so having a place to stow it near my seat is another consideration.
     
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  20. 93 Octane

    93 Octane Chief bottle washer

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    A note to EB purchasers if you rebook within 36 hours of takeoff you lose the EB and will have to manually check in 24 hours before departure
     
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