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EarlyBird Check-In®

EarlyBird Check-In is a low-cost option giving you the convenience of automatic check-in before our traditional 24-hour check-in. You’ll have the benefit of an earlier boarding position. As an EarlyBird Check-In Customer, you will have a better opportunity to select your preferred available seat and have earlier access to overhead bin storage for your carryon luggage.

All EarlyBird Check-In purchases are nonrefundable. Customers who cancel their flight will forfeit the previously purchased EarlyBird Check-In option for that particular flight.

In the event that a flight is cancelled by Southwest, the EarlyBird Check-In purchased for the cancelled flight will be refunded.

While EarlyBird Check-In doesn't guarantee an A boarding position, it improves your seat selection options to help you get your favorite seat.

Customers who have purchased electronic tickets at the Wanna Get Away® or Anytime fares can benefit from purchasing EarlyBird Check-In. Priority boarding privileges are already included with the purchase of Business Select® fares and are a benefit of being a Rapid Rewards® A-List Preferred or A-List Member or a Passenger on a reservation that includes an A-List Preferred or A-List Member. EarlyBird Check-In Customers will receive boarding positions after Business Select Customers and after A-List Preferred and A-List Members and Passengers on the same reservations of such A-List Preferred and A-List Members. NOTE: EarlyBird Check-In should not be purchased for (1) for Passengers on the same reservation as an A-List or an A-List Preferred Member as they will receive priority boarding or (2) Unaccompanied Minors since they will preboard the flight. Please review our Unaccompanied Minor Policies for more details.

*EarlyBird Check-In can be purchased at prices ranging from $15 - $25 one-way per passenger.  A credit card must be used for the purchase of EarlyBird Check-In.

EarlyBird Check-In Customers will have their boarding positions reserved beginning 36 hours prior to their flight's scheduled departure time. Boarding Passes can be accessed beginning 24 hours prior to the flight's scheduled local departure time.

Yes. Customers who have purchased Anytime Fares will receive priority over Customers who purchase EarlyBird with other fare types. Boarding positions are assigned based on the time stamp of the EarlyBird Check-In purchase relative to Passengers within the same fare class.

EarlyBird Check-In can be purchased on, over the phone with one of our Reservation Agents, our mobile site, and apps, up to 36 hours prior to a flight's scheduled local departure time. Purchase Early Bird Check-In here.

EarlyBird Check-In can be purchased as part of the original flight purchase or added to a flight after purchase.

No. All eligible Customers can purchase EarlyBird Check-In.

Yes, if EarlyBird Check-In is purchased and added to an existing itinerary. If EarlyBird Check-In is purchased within the same transaction as the air purchase, then all eligible Customers must purchase EarlyBird Check-In as well.

Yes. In the event that we must cancel a flight, we recognize that the decision was not within the Customer’s control and will process a refund of the EarlyBird Check-In purchase for that particular flight in the Customer’s itinerary. The purchaser’s credit card will be refunded within seven business days. If you do not receive the EarlyBird Check-In refund in this time frame please contact us for further assistance.

Yes, an EarlyBird Check-In confirmation email will be sent to the email address listed in the itinerary.

No. After adding EarlyBird Check-In, your existing confirmation number and travel details remain the same.

It depends. EarlyBird Check-In is tied to the Customer’s reservation for which the EarlyBird Check-In purchase was made and will be transferred to the Customer’s new flight if he/she changes the flight at least 25 hours prior to the original flight’s scheduled departure time and so long as the change is to a flight that will depart in more than 25 hours. Since EarlyBird Check-In is associated with a reservation, any changes must be made within the same reservation record (same confirmation number) in which the Customer purchased EarlyBird Check-In.

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