Special Luggage

Alcoholic Beverages

Southwest allows alcohol to be carried in checked luggage under the following conditions.

  • Alcohol (wine and liquor) must be in the original unopened container with the manufacturer's label when transported in or as checked baggage.
  • The maximum quantity of liquor that may be transported in or as checked baggage on Southwest Airlines is five liters per Customer. Wine is not subject to the five-liter per Customer limitation.
  • Alcohol content may not exceed 70% by volume (140 proof).
  • Alcohol (wine and liquor) in checked baggage must be securely packaged in a leak-proof bag with adequate professional packaging designed to fit the proportions of the bottle to prevent breakage.
  • Alcohol (wine and liquor) accepted as checked baggage must be contained within a corrugated box secured with sealing tape. The contents must be packaged in a leak-proof bag with professional packaging designed to fit the proportions of the bottle to prevent breakage.
  • Liquor and wine packaging is available for sale at Southwest Airlines ticket counters for $5.00 per unit.
  • Southwest Airlines does not accept liability for breakage of liquids or fragile items in checked luggage even if transported in special packaging purchased from Southwest Airlines.
  • Packaging purchased at Southwest Airlines ticket counters is intended for liquor or wine placed inside checked baggage only.
  • Professional packaging by alcohol and wine suppliers (e.g., cruise lines, wineries, duty-free shops) is acceptable as long as the contents have adequate cushioning and the packaging prevents leakage.
  • All alcohol (wine and liquor) is subject to TSA screening.

Pet Policy

General Information:

Southwest Airlines accepts small vaccinated domestic cats and dogs to travel with you in-cabin under the seat in front of you. All pets must be carried in an appropriate carrier, as indicated below. The pet carrier counts as either a carryon item or a personal item.

Pets will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis until capacity is reached. Six (6) pets are allowed per flight with a limit of one pet carrier per paying Customer traveling on the same flight. However, from time to time, circumstances may allow for more (or fewer) than six (6) pet carriers per scheduled flight.

Pets must be checked in at the airport ticket counter, however Customers can still secure their boarding pass online, at curbside checkin, the airport kiosk, or the ticket counter.

We maintain the right to refuse acceptance of a cat or dog exhibiting aggressive behavior or any other characteristics that appear incompatible with air travel.

For a list of key Pet topics please visit our Pet FAQs.

 
Pet Reservation & Payment Information

New Pet Fare Price: Effective 10/23/2013.

  • Pets traveling prior to January 15, 2014 are subject to a $75 Pet Fare each way per pet carrier.
  • Pets traveling January 15, 2014 and beyond are subject to a $95 Pet Fare each way per pet carrier.

Pet Fares are nonrefundable and may not be applied toward future-date travel if unused. Please note, the Pet Fare is subject to change at any time.

  • Southwest-only Flights: Reservations must be made in advance by calling 1-800-I-FLY-SWA (1-800-435-9792). On the day of travel, Customers must bring the pet to the airport in an approved pet carrier. Proceed to the airport ticket counter to check the pet in and pay the Pet Fare before going to the departure gate.
  • Southwest/AirTran Shared Itinerary Flights: Advanced pet reservations are not available for shared itineraries at this time. On the day of travel, Customers must bring the pet to the airport in an approved pet carrier. Proceed to the airport ticket counter to book the pet's reservation and pay the Pet Fare before going to the departure gate.
  • AirTran-only Flights: Information regarding pet travel on AirTran-only Flights can be found on airtran.com.

In-cabin Pet Carriers

Get your official Southwest Airlines branded pet carrier for $48 (tax included) at any Southwest Airport Ticket Counter or online (tax not included) at The Freedom Shop (not an affiliate of Southwest Airlines Co.). Pet carriers are nonrefundable.

Acceptable Pet Carriers:

  • Pet carriers are limited to maximum dimensions of 8.5” high x 18.5” long x 13.5” wide.
  • Soft-sided and hard-sided carriers specifically designed as pet carriers are acceptable.
  • The carriers must be leak-proof and well ventilated.
  • The pet carrier must be small enough to fit under the seat in front of the Customer and be stowed in accordance with Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations.

Pet Carrier Requirements:

  • Southwest Airlines allows only one pet carrier per ticketed Passenger.
  • The carrier may contain two (2) cats or dogs and must be of the same species per carrier.
  • The cat or dog must be completely inside the pet carrier and be able to stand up and move around the carrier with ease.
  • Pets must be secured in the pet carrier at all times while in the gate area, during boarding/deplaning, and they must remain in the carrier for the entire duration of the flight. Failure to follow this requirement may result in denial of transportation of the pet onboard Southwest Airlines.

Note: Pet carriers are considered either a personal item or a carryon item. A Customer may board the aircraft with either a pet carrier and a personal item or a pet carrier and a regular size carryon bag. A Customer may not board the aircraft with a pet carrier, a regular size carryon bag, and a personal item. The pet carrier must conform to all carryon baggage regulations.

Pet Travel Restrictions

  • Southwest Airlines does not accept pets (cats or dogs) traveling without a Customer.
  • Pets are not permitted to travel with Unaccompanied Minors.
  • Pets are not permitted to travel to international destinations. Note: Pets are permitted to travel to San Juan (SJU).
  • Customers traveling with a pet may not occupy an exit row or a seat with no forward under-seat stowage.
  • Southwest Airlines will only carry pets in the cabin; pets are not permitted as checked baggage.
  • There will be no more than six (6) scheduled pet carriers per scheduled flight. However, from time to time, circumstances may allow for more (or fewer) than six (6) pet carriers per scheduled flight.
  • Cats and dogs must be at least eight (8) weeks old for travel.
  • The animals must be harmless, not disruptive, odorless, and require no attention during flight.
  • Cats and dogs must remain in the carrier (including head and tail) and the carrier must be stowed under the seat in front of the Customer (owner) for the entire duration of the flight.
  • Southwest Airlines will not be responsible if a Customer misses a flight due to the need to take the cat or dog to an outside relief area. Flight departures will not be delayed or held in order for connecting Customers to take a pet to an animal relief area.
  • If the pet becomes ill during the flight, oxygen or other first aid procedures will not be administered.
  • In the event of an emergency, an oxygen mask may not be available for the cat or dog.
  • Southwest Airlines assumes no liability for the health or wellbeing of carryon pets.
  • Southwest Airlines will not accept pet remains in the cabin of the aircraft.

Note: These restrictions do not apply to assistance animals or emotional support animals accompanying a person with a disability. More Information

Traveling with Pets: Security

When passing through security, Customers will be asked to hold the pet and walk through the screening device while the carrier is x-rayed.

All pet carriers are subject to being searched by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), other airport security authorities, as well as searches by airline personnel.

Batteries

Battery Safety Tips from the Transportation Security Administration

  • Dry Cell Batteries
    Any Alkaline, NiCad, Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH), Silver Oxide, and Carbon Zinc batteries similar to those used in flashlights or commonly used electronic devices are allowed onboard the aircraft.

    These items must be securely installed in equipment or have exposed terminals protected in a manner to prevent short circuit. Electrical tape, individually bagging batteries in sealable plastic bags, or plastic covers designed to protect the terminals from short circuit would all meet this requirement.
  • Fuel Cells
    Regulation reference [49 CFR Part 175.10][IATA: 2.3.5.10]
    Fuel cells used to power portable electronic devices (e.g., cameras, cellular phones, laptop computers, camcorders) are allowed on Southwest Airlines under the following conditions:

    • Fuel cells and fuel cell cartridges may only contain flammable liquids, corrosive substances, liquefied flammable gas, water-reactive substances, or hydrogen in metal hydride.
    • Refueling of fuel cells on board an aircraft is not permitted except that the installation of a spare cartridge is allowed.
    • The maximum quantity of fuel in any fuel cell or fuel cell cartridge must not exceed the following:

      • 6.7 fl oz (200 ml) for liquids
      • 0.4 lb or 7 oz (200 g) for solids
      • 4 fl oz (120 ml) for liquefied gas (non-metallic)
      • 6.7 fl oz (200 ml) for liquefied gas (metal)
      • The fuel cell cartridges must have a water capacity of 4 fl oz (120 ml) or less for hydrogen in metal hydride.
    • Each fuel cell or cartridge must be marked with the maximum quantity and type of fuel.
    • Each fuel cell or cartridge must be marked with a manufacturers certification that it conforms to IEC PAS 62282–6–1 Ed.1.
    • Fuel cells containing fuel are permitted in carryon baggage only.
    • Fuel cells whose sole function is to charge a battery in the device are not permitted.
    • Must be durably marked by the manufacturer: “APPROVED FOR CARRIAGE IN AIRCRAFT CABIN ONLY.”

    Note: TSA security regulations may be more restrictive.
  • Lithium Batteries
    Click here for updates from the TSA on Lithium Batteries in Checked and Carryon Baggage
  • Spillable Wet Cell
    Wet cell batteries (like most car or motorcycle batteries) are not allowed in checked or carryon baggage.

    The only exception is for a Customer's wheelchair or assistive device. If your wheelchair/assistive device is powered by a spillable wet cell battery, the battery will be removed from the wheelchair and transported in a special battery box. To allow for proper handling, please arrive at the gate one hour prior to departure and notify the Customer Service Agent on duty that the battery is a wet cell spillable battery.
  • Non-spillable Wet Cell
    Equipment containing non-spillable wet cell batteries (gel cell or absorbent glass mat) can be carried as cargo (Shippers must meet all applicable security requirements). The equipment with the battery installed must be protected from short circuit and securely packaged. The package must be marked “Non-spillable” or “Non-spillable Battery.”

    If you are traveling with a wheelchair or other assistive device that has a non-spillable battery, it is important to note that the battery will be disconnected at the quick disconnect, securely attached to the wheelchair/assistive device during transport, and reattached upon arrival at the destination.

Cameras and Film

  • The screening equipment that inspects your checked luggage may damage undeveloped film in camera equipment. We recommend that you put undeveloped film and cameras containing undeveloped film in your carryon baggage. The screening equipment will not damage camera images.
  • Camcorders are allowed in or as carryon baggage. If carried separately from the one allowable carryon baggage, the camcorder will be counted as your one personal item.
  • Media cameras are exempt from the sizing box restriction imposed on other carryon luggage, and, if carried onboard, must be stowed in accordance with FAA safety regulations. If the camera is to be secured in a seat, however, a ticket must be purchased for that seat.
  • Camera, film, video, lighting, and sound equipment will be accepted when presented by a representative of a network or local television broadcasting company or a commercial filmmaking company. A fee of $75 will be charged for each item in excess of the free baggage allowance. Media equipment will not be assessed oversized or overweight charges.

Camping Equipment

  • Since August 4, 2007, a single common lighter is allowed in carryon baggage or on your person.
  • Torch lighters, lighter fluid, strike anywhere matches and fire starter (liquid, solid or gel) are prohibited in checked or carryon baggage.
  • Safety matches are allowed in your carryon baggage or on your person. Effective January 1, 2008, only one book of safety matches are allowed.
  • Camping equipment, typically camp stoves and lanterns, are fueled by either a flammable liquid or a flammable gas. It is Southwest's policy not to carry these items, with the following exceptions:
    • Flammable Liquid Fueled Equipment (white fuel, gasoline, diesel, etc.): Camp stoves, heaters, lanterns or other flammable liquid fuel camp equipment will not be accepted as checked or carryon baggage unless the equipment is brand new, unused and still in the manufacturer's package. We will not accept flammable liquid fuel equipment if there is any evidence that the equipment has been used.
    • Flammable Gas Fueled Equipment (propane/butane): Camp stoves, heaters, lanterns, or other camping equipment that uses compressed gas cylinders will be conditionally accepted as checked or carryon baggage. The stove burner and/or lantern filament may be carried, as long as there is no fuel cylinder. The fuel cylinders themselves must be removed and are prohibited in checked and carryon baggage, whether they are empty or full.
  • Knives, axes, and other cutting instruments must have the blades protected and must be stowed in checked baggage only.

Engines and Air Compressors

  • Electric Air Compressors/Gasoline Powered Compressors: Electric air compressors are allowed as checked baggage if the air tank is verifiably empty. The unit must be transported with the air tank in the open position and the gauge must register no pressure in the tank. Gasoline powered compressors are not allowed.
  • Internal Combustion Engines: Southwest Airlines does not allow internal combustion engines as checked or carryon baggage. This includes new or used equipment. This restriction includes lawn equipment, engine-powered scooters, and any other fuel-operated combustion engine.
  • Flammable Liquids: Flammable Liquids associated with internal combustion engines (i.e., gasoline, kerosene, and/or diesel fuel) are all regulated hazardous materials and cannot be carried in checked or carryon baggage. This applies to engines, engine components associated with these fuels, and fuel containers that have been in contact with these fuels.
  • Motor Oil and Fluids: While they are not regulated as hazardous materials, items such as motor oil, hydraulic fluids, brake fluid, and transmission fluid are not allowed in checked or carryon baggage due to the damage they can cause if spilled.

Guns and Ammunition

Guns

  • Customers are responsible for knowing and following the firearms laws of the state(s) that they will be traveling to, from, and through.
  • Our Customers must declare the gun to the Customer Service Agent at the ticket counter (no firearms will be accepted curbside) and ensure that the firearm(s) chambers are free of ammunition and the magazine clip has been removed (when applicable). Paintball guns and BB guns are considered the same as all other firearms.
  • Paintball guns are allowed in checked baggage and are not subject to the container requirements of firearms. Customers must declare the paintball gun to the Customer Service Agent at the ticket counter. Compressed gas cylinders are allowed in checked baggage or as a carryon only if the regulator valve is completely disconnected from the cylinder and the cylinder is no longer sealed (i.e., the cylinder has an open end). TSA Security Screeners must visibly ensure that the cylinder is completely empty and that there are no prohibited items inside.
  • Firearms must be encased in a hard-sided, locked container that is of sufficient strength to withstand normal handling, as follows:
    1. A firearm in a hard-sided, locked container may be placed inside a soft-sided, unlocked suitcase.
    2. A firearm placed inside a hard-sided, locked suitcase does not have to be encased in a container manufactured for the transportation of firearms.
    3. The locked container or suitcase must completely secure the firearm from access. Cases or suitcases that can be pulled open with minimal effort do not meet the locked criterion.
    4. Only the Customer checking the luggage should retain the key or combination to the lock. No exceptions will be made.
  • Firearms may be checked and will count toward the two-piece free baggage allowance for each fare-paying passenger. We allow multiple firearms to be transported inside one hard-sided case.
  • Southwest Airlines assumes no liability for the misalignment of sights on firearms, including those equipped with telescopic sights.
  • Firearms are never allowed in carryon luggage.

Ammunition

  • Small arms ammunition for personal use (provided it is properly packed) is permissible in checked baggage only.
  • The ammunition may be placed in the same container as the firearm and must be securely packed in cardboard (fiber), wood, or metal boxes, or other packaging specifically designed to carry small amounts of ammunition.
  • When checking ammunition, Customers are limited to 11 pounds gross weight (ammunition plus container) per person.
  • Magazines or clips containing ammunition must be securely packaged (placed in another small box or in a secure cutout in the carrying case, in order to protect the primer of the ammunition).
  • Make sure guns are unloaded and definitely never transport a gun in your carryon baggage!
  • Gunpowder (black powder) and primers or percussion caps are not allowed in checked or carryon baggage.
  • Loose ammunition or loose loaded magazines and/or clips are not allowed.
  • Paintballs must be packaged in a leak-proof container and will be conditionally accepted.

Human Remains

  • Southwest Airlines will not accept human remains as checked baggage; however, a Customer may take cremated remains onboard a domestic U.S. or international flight as a carryon item under certain conditions. We recommend that cremated remains be presented for transport in a temporary plastic or cardboard container.
  • A Customer or funeral/cremation facility may choose to transport either cremated or uncremated remains via Southwest Airlines Cargo. Advanced arrangements are required for this service. We recommend that you book your Southwest Support shipment at least 24 hours prior to departure. You may book your shipment up to seven (7) days in advance.
  • Southwest Airlines Cargo provides professional and reliable transportation for funeral homes and mortuary services and is available to all Southwest Airlines served destinations across our system. Learn more online or contact the Southwest Support Customer Care Center at 1-888-922-9525 for more information about this service.

Medications and Medical Oxygen

Medications

Please visit the TSA's web site for instructions and allowable medication in carryon baggage.

Medical Oxygen

Southwest is not equipped to transport or provide medical oxygen or other hazardous materials and/or contained gas, either in the passenger cabin or as cargo or baggage. Any Customer who requires a constant supply of compressed or liquid medical oxygen cannot travel on Southwest Airlines. If there is a question as to a Customer's ability to travel the duration of a flight without the use of medical oxygen, we may request documentation from a licensed physician to verify that the Customer can complete the flight safely and without the use of medical oxygen.

Liquid oxygen cannot be carried onboard our aircraft. If a liquid oxygen unit is empty (and contains a gauge or color indicator verifying the unit is empty), then the unit can be transported, as long as the valve remains open.

See Medications and Assistive Devices for full details.

Portable Oxygen Concentrators

While Portable Oxygen Concentrator (POC) devices may be brought onboard our flights, in accordance with Special Federal Aviation Regulation (SFAR) No. 106, 14 CFR Part 121, only the AirSep FreeStyle, AirSep LifeStyle, AirSep Focus, AirSep FreeStyle 5, Delphi RS-00400, DeVilbiss Healthcare iGo, Inogen One, Inogen One G2, Inogen One G3, Inova Labs LifeChoice, Inova Labs LifeChoice Activox, International Biophysics LifeChoice, Invacare XPO2, Invacare SOLO2, Oxlife Independence Oxygen Concentrator, Oxus RS-00400, Precision Medical EasyPulse, Respironics EverGo, Respironics SimplyGo, SeQual Eclipse, SeQual eQuinox Oxygen System (model 4000), SeQual Oxywell Oxygen System (model 4000), SeQual Saros, and VBOX Trooper Oxygen Concentrator models are approved for use during flight.

  • The POC may only be used in its battery-operated mode. Southwest Airlines does not have electrical outlets onboard for commercial product use.
  • To be used onboard the aircraft, the AirSep FreeStyle, AirSep FreeStyle, AirSep LifeStyle, AirSep Focus, AirSep FreeStyle 5, Delphi RS-00400, DeVilbiss Healthcare iGo, Inogen One, Inogen One G2, Inogen One G3, Inova Labs LifeChoice, Inova Labs LifeChoice Activox, International Biophysics LifeChoice, Invacare XPO2, Invacare SOLO2, Oxlife Independence Oxygen Concentrator, Oxus RS-00400, Precision Medical EasyPulse, Respironics EverGo, Respironics SimplyGo, SeQual Eclipse, SeQual eQuinox Oxygen System (model 4000), SeQual Oxywell Oxygen System (model 4000), SeQual Saros, and VBOX Trooper Oxygen Concentrator  must have a label attached indicating that it has been approved for use in aircraft.
  • The Customer must have a sufficient number of fully charged batteries to cover no less than 150% of the expected maximum flight duration, which is based on the scheduled flight time and factors such as weather conditions, traffic delays, and any other conditions that may delay travel. (We recommend carrying at least one extra battery.) Extra batteries must be packaged for carryon in a manner to prevent short circuit. Battery terminals must either be recessed or packed so as to prevent contact with metal objects, including terminals of other batteries.
  • The Customer must have a letter from his or her physician on letterhead with an issue-date of no more than one year prior to flight departure date. You may have your physician draft his or her own letter or have your physician select the link and print and fill out our Physician Consent Template (English) / Physician Consent Template (Spanish). (This document will only be accepted if it is printed on the physician's letterhead.)

Regardless of which option you choose, the physician's letter must state:

  1. Whether the user is able to operate the device and recognize and respond appropriately to its alarms, and if not, that the user is traveling with a companion who is able to perform these functions.
  2. The phases of the flight (taxi, takeoff, cruise, landing) during which use of the device is medically necessary
  3. The maximum flow rate corresponding to the pressure in the cabin under normal operating conditions. (Cabins are pressurized to an altitude of 8,000 feet.)

Making Reservations:

  1. At the time the reservation is made, the Customer must inform our Customer Support and Services Agent of the intended use of the POC and the model of POC to be used.
  2. If booking through a travel agent, the Customer should call 1-800-I-FLY-SWA (1-800-435-9792) after the reservation is made.
  3. Customers also may indicate the intended use of the POC when booking travel via southwest.com.

At the Airport:

  1. The Customer using the AirSep FreeStyle, AirSep LifeStyle, AirSep Focus, AirSep FreeStyle 5, Delphi RS-00400, DeVilbiss Healthcare iGo, Inogen One, Inogen One G2, Inogen One G3, Inova Labs LifeChoice, Inova Labs LifeChoice Activox, International Biophysics LifeChoice, Invacare XPO2, Invacare SOLO2, Oxlife Independence Oxygen Concentrator, Oxus RS-00400, Precision Medical EasyPulse, Respironics EverGo, Respironics SimplyGo, SeQual Eclipse, SeQual eQuinox Oxygen System (model 4000), SeQual Oxywell Oxygen System (model 4000), SeQual Saros, and VBOX Trooper Oxygen Concentrator must check in by receiving a boarding pass and arrive at the departure gate no less than 45 minutes prior to departure. The Customer must then see a Customer Service Agent to receive a Preboarding Document and Notice to Preboarding Customers.
  2. Prior to boarding, the Southwest Airlines Operations Agent will verify the POC model, physician's letter, and number and packaging of batteries.
  3. Although preboarding is not required, we strongly suggest that Customers using POCs in the aircraft board with the Preboarding Group. Note: Customers who do not make themselves available for preboarding in order to secure an aircraft seat that meets FAA safety requirements may be denied boarding or rebooked on an alternate flight to their destination in order to be seated appropriately. While we will make every attempt to accommodate a Customer using a POC who does not preboard, we will not delay the aircraft to reseat Customers.

Onboard the Aircraft:

  1. In accordance with Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Safety Regulations, the Customer using an approved POC must be seated in a seat closer to the window than any other Customer in that row. In many situations, the Customer using the approved POC must be seated in a window seat to comply with the Safety Regulations.
  2. Approved POCs that will be used during any phase of flight must be stowed completely underneath the seat in front of the Customer using the POC. As a result, the Customer may not be seated in a bulkhead seat.
  3. Pursuant to FAA Safety Regulations, a Customer using a POC may not occupy an emergency exit seat.

Musical Instruments

  • If your instrument does not meet the sizing requirements for carryon items (10"x16"x24"), it will be handled as checked baggage provided you do not wish to purchase a seat for the instrument.
  • In the event you are traveling with a musical instrument that is larger than our sizing requirements for carryon luggage and is fragile in nature, you may purchase a seat for the instrument and carry it in the cabin under the following conditions:
    • The instrument must fit in the seat without blocking aircraft signage and be secured with a seatbelt.
    • The instrument must be placed in the first row and in a seat closer to the window than any other Customer in that row.
    • Reservations must be made and a ticket must be purchased at a charge no greater than the Child's Fare. Musical instruments cannot be transported in place of a free companion under any fare promotion.
  • Instruments that are transported in a soft-sided case or other packaging that is not strong enough to protect the instrument under normal baggage handling conditions will be conditionally accepted, which means that Southwest assumes no liability for any damage sustained to the item during transport.

Please Note: Some musical instruments (e.g. double bass, cello, etc.) cannot be secured in a seat and must be transported as checked baggage. Oversize or overweight charges may apply.

Seafood and Other Perishable Items

Packing Rules

Seafood (including fresh seafood, shrimp, fish of all kinds, live lobsters, live crabs, and live crawfish), meat, fowl, game, and other perishable foods must be suitably packed in leak-proof containers. Styrofoam® or other plastic foam containers are not acceptable for frozen food or other items that may leak during transit.

  • Items must be wrapped in heavy plastic, and bags must be securely sealed to prevent leakage (except when used for live seafood shipments where air flow is required).
  • Styrofoam® (or other plastic foam) inserts should be used between the plastic bag and the inner wall of the carton.
  • If the items require refrigeration, they should be packed with a self-contained refrigerant.
  • These items are subject to inspection by a Southwest Airlines Employee and will be conditionally accepted. (Southwest assumes no liability for damage sustained during transport.)

Refrigerants: Shipments packed in wet ice will not be accepted unless the ice is contained in sealed polyethylene bags (Ziploc® bags). Frozen gels or dry ice/carbon dioxide are the preferred refrigerants. Dry ice/carbon dioxide may be used as a refrigerant for perishables under the following limitations:

  • Dry ice/carbon dioxide may not weigh more than 5.5 pounds in checked or carryon baggage.
  • The package must be designed to permit the release of carbon dioxide gas to prevent buildup of pressure.
  • The outside of the container must be marked "dry ice" or "carbon dioxide solid." The net weight of the dry ice and the contents of the package must also be shown. A Southwest Airlines Dry Ice Label (WN-659) may be used to meet these marking requirements.

Sports Equipment

Any of the items listed below may be checked in substitution of one piece of the free Checked Baggage allowance for each Passenger at no charge on a one-item-for-one-bag basis. If the item of sporting equipment exceeds 50 pounds in weight or 62 inches in size (outside length plus height plus width), excess weight and size charges may apply.

  • Archery equipment, including a bow, arrows, and an average size target (large target stands cannot be accepted), so long as the bow and arrows are encased in a container acceptable to Carrier for withstanding normal Baggage handling without sustaining damage to the equipment. 
  • Baseball/Softball equipment, Effective March 1, 2012: including one bag generally consisting of four bats, one helmet, one pair of cleats, one uniform, one glove, and one pair of batting gloves. The catcher may have additional equipment.
  • Boogie or knee board
  • Bowling bag, including ball(s) and shoes.
  • Bicycles (defined as nonmotorized and having a single seat), including Bike Friday and Co-Pilot, properly packed in a hard-sided bicycle box that fall within the dimensions and weight limits established for normal Checked Baggage, (i.e., 62 inches or less in overall dimensions and less than 50 pounds in weight). Pedals and handlebars must be removed and packaged in protective materials so as not to be damaged by or cause damage to other Baggage. Bicycles packaged in cardboard or soft-sided cases will be transported as conditionally accepted items.

    Note: See below for information regarding bicycles that exceed our checked baggage size limits. Additional charges may apply.
  • Fishing tackle box and fishing rod, so long as the rod is encased in a cylindrical fishing rod container suitable to Carrier for withstanding normal Checked Baggage handling without sustaining damage to the rod. Fishing rod containers may measure up to three inches in diameter and 91 inches in length.
  • Golf bag in hard-sided golf bag carrying case provided by Passenger, including clubs, balls, and shoes. Hooded golf bags or golf bags in a soft-sided carrying case provided by the Passenger will be conditionally accepted.
    Note: Overweight charges will apply to golf bags exceeding 50 pounds.
  • Hockey and/or lacrosse stick(s) as long as multiple sticks are either taped together or encased in a suitable bag or container. Effective March 1, 2012: two hockey sticks and/or lacrosse sticks taped together and one hockey or lacrosse equipment bag generally consisting of pads, helmets, pants, jersey, gloves, and skates. When substituting hockey and/or lacrosse equipment for a free checked bag, Southwest Airlines allows up to two bags (containing hockey sticks and/or lacrosse sticks and one hockey or lacrosse equipment bag) to count as one item, even if they are taped or packed separately.
  • Kiteboard
  • Knives, dress sabers, and swords are allowed in checked baggage only.
  • Parachutes are allowed in checked or carryon baggage, but may not be worn in flight.
  • Scuba equipment, provided air tanks are empty and all accompanying equipment (e.g., BCD, weight belt, one regulator, one tank harness, one tank pressure gauge, one mask, two fins, one snorkel, one knife, and one safety vest) are encased together in a container acceptable to Carrier.
  • Skateboard, may be substituted for a carryon or a checked bag. If the skateboard fits under the seat, it does not need to be in a bag or covered, but it does have to be stowed with the wheels up so that it doesn't roll. If stowed in an overhead bin, a skateboard must be stowed with the wheels up and needs to be in a bag or have the wheels covered (trash bag is acceptable) so as not to damage other articles.
  • Snow ski equipment, including skis or snowboards, ski boots, and ski poles. Effective March 1, 2012: including one pair of skis or one snowboard, one set of poles, and one pair of ski/snowboard boots encased in a container(s) acceptable to Carrier. When substituting ski equipment for a free bag, Southwest Airlines allows up to two bags (containing one set of snow skis, ski poles, and ski boots) to count as one item, even if they are packed and tagged separately.

    Note: Snow ski equipment will not be subject to excess size charges. However, excess weight charges may apply.
  • Water ski equipment encased in a container(s) acceptable to Carrier and including no more than one pair of water skis and one life preserver or vest.

    Note: Water ski equipment will not be subject to excess size charges. However, excess weight charges may apply.

Effective for tickets purchased on or after December 15, 2012, for travel on or after February 13, 2013, the items listed below will be accepted as Checked Baggage for a $75 each way charge. For tickets for travel before February 13, 2013, or for tickets purchased prior to December 15, 2012, the items listed below will be accepted as Checked Baggage for a $50 each way charge.

  • Bicycles (defined as nonmotorized and having a single seat) properly packed in a bicycle box or hardsided case larger than 62 inches in total dimensions will be accepted as Checked Baggage. Pedals and handlebars must be removed and packaged in protective materials so as not to be damaged by or cause damage to other Baggage. Bicycles packaged in cardboard or softsided cases will be transported as conditionally accepted items. 
  • Javelins in a single bag, regardless of the number of javelins encased together, will be accepted.
  • Kayak (other than a sea kayak).  Paddle(s) must be secured.
  • Life Raft Cartridges associated with a self-inflating life raft must be removed and are not allowed on Southwest.
  • Surfboard, keels and fins must be removed and placed in carryon or checked baggage.
  • Vaulting poles will be accepted in a single bag, regardless of the number of poles in the bag.
  • Wind surfing board, keel removed and placed in checked baggage to prevent damage to the sail, boom, and other baggage.

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