- Plan your trip in advance, then wait for a fare sale to buy your ticket on Southwest.com. Sales occur fairly often during non-peak travel times, and you can save as much as $200 per ticket if you time things right.
- Southwest tickets are sold only on Southwest.com (the number one airline website for sales and revenue) and at airport ticket offices. You will not see Southwest flights listed on Expedia, Travelocity, or Orbitz.
- Although Southwest does not offer business or first-class seating, there are a variety of ticket classes you can choose from. These range from low Internet and Promotional fares to relatively high Refundable Anytime rates.
- The Southwest Shortcut to Low Fares button on Southwest.com can help you search for the lowest available fares, which is useful if your travel dates are flexible.
- Expect your flight to be no-frills. On a recent five-plus hour flight from New York to Las Vegas, there was no movie and no meal. Soft drinks and an unbalanced sugary/salty snack was served. So if your flight is longer than a few hours or you don't want to eat junk food, bring your own meal.
- Don't expect your flight to be very comfortable, unless you travel at an unpopular time and find an empty seat next to you. The Southwest Airlines fleet consists of Boeing 737 jets, which have some of the narrowest seats (about 17" across) in the air.
- There are no seat assignments on Southwest Airlines. You can usually print out a boarding pass online and check in at the airport.
Tips that Insiders Know
- Families with very young children are permitted to pre-board. Oftentimes, they are seated in the front of the plane. To avoid them, choose a row toward the back of the plane.
- If the two of you buy an extra seat (which is quite affordable during fare sales), you will not only have your own row to stretch out on (larger across than two first-class seats on other airlines), but you will be entitled to pre-board...and locate yourselves a safe distance from any screaming babies up front.