What do I need to know when booking Southwest? - PassPorter - A Community of Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Disney Cruise Line, and General Travel Forums
PassPorter.com
Award-winning travel guidebooks
Thank you to our forum sponsor:

   guidebooks   |   news   |   podcasts   |   boards   |   blog   |   worksheets   |   photos   |   articles   |   updates   |   register   |   follow us on


Forums Closed
As of January 1, 2019, we have closed our forums. This is a decision we did not come to lightly, but it is necessary. The software our forums run on is just too out-of-date and it poses a significant security risk. The server software itself must be updated, and it cannot be without removing the forums.

So it is with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to our long-running forums. They came online in 2000 and brought together so many wonderful Disney fans. We had friendships form, careers launch, couples marry, children born ... all because of this amazing community.

Thank you to each of you who were a part of this community. You made it possible.

And a very special thank you to our Guides (moderators), past and present, who kept our forums a happy place to be. You are the glue that held everything together, and we are forever grateful to you. Thank you aliceinwdw, Caldercup, MrsM, WillCAD, Fortissimo, GingerJ, HiddenMickey, CRCrazy, Eeyoresmom, disneyknut, disneydani, Cam22, chezp, WDWfan, Luvsun, KMB733, rescuesk, OhToodles!, Colexis Mom, lfredsbo, HiddenMickey, DrDolphin, DopeyGirl, duck addict, Disneybine, PixieMichele, Sandra Bostwick, Eeyore Tattoo, DyanKJ130, Suzy Q'Disney, LilMarcieMouse, AllisonG, Belle*, Chrissi, Brant, DawnDenise, Crystalloubear, Disneymom9092, FanOfMickey, Goofy4Goofy, GoofyMom, Home4us123, iamgrumpy, ilovedisney247, Jennifer2003, Jenny Pooh, KrisLuvsDisney, Ladyt, Laughaholic88, LauraBelle Hime, Lilianna, LizardCop, Loobyoxlip, lukeandbrooksmom, marisag, michnash, MickeyMAC, OffKilter_Lynn, PamelaK, Poor_Eeyore, ripkensnana, RobDVC, SHEANA1226, Shell of the South, snoozin, Statelady01, Tara O'Hara, tigger22, Tink and Co., Tinkerbelz, WDWJAMBA, wdwlovers, Wendyismyname, whoSEZ, WildforWD, and WvuGrrrl. You made the magic.

We want to personally thank Sara Varney, who coordinated our community for many years (among so many other things she did for us), and Cheryl Pendry, our Message Board Manager who helped train our Guides, and Ginger Jabour, who helped us with the PassPorter-specific forums and Live! Guides. Thank you for your time, energy, and enthusiasm​. You made it all happen.

There are other changes as well.

Why? Well, the world has changed. And change with it, we must. The lyrics to "We Go On" for IllumiNations say it best:

We go on to the joy and through the tears
We go on to discover new frontiers
Moving on with the current of the years.
We go on
Moving forward now as one
Moving on with a spirit born to run
Ever on with each rising sun.
To a new day, we go on.

It's time to move on and move forward.

PassPorter is a small business, and for many years it supported our family. But the world changed, print books took a backseat to the Internet, and for a long time now it has been unable to make ends meet. We've had to find new ways to support our family, which means new careers and less and less time available to devote to our first baby, PassPorter.

But eventually, we must move on and move forward. It is the right thing to do.

So we are retiring this newsletter, as we simply cannot keep up with it. Many thanks to Mouse Fan Travel who supported it all these years, to All Ears and MousePlanet who helped us with news, to our many article contributors, and -- most importantly -- to Sara Varney who edited our newsletter so wonderfully for years and years.

And we are no longer charging for the Live Guides. If you have a subscription, it's yours to keep for the lifetime of the Live Guides at no additional cost. The Live Guides will stay online, barring server issues and technical problems, for all of 2019.

That said, PassPorter is not going away. Most of the resources will remain online for as long as we can support them, and after that we will find ways to make whatever we can available. PassPorter means a great deal to us, and to many of you, and we will do our best to keep it alive in whatever way we can. Our server costs are high, and they'll need to come out of our pockets, so in the future you can expect some changes so we can bring those costs down.

Thank you, thank you, thank you for your amazing support over the years. Without you, there's no way us little guys could have made something like this happen and given the "big guys" a run for their money. PassPorter was consistently the #3 guidebook after the Unofficial and Official guides, which was really unheard of for such a small company to do. We ROCKED it thanks to you and your support and love!

If you miss us, you can still find some of us online. Sara started a new blog at DisneyParkPrincess.com -- I strongly urge you to visit and get on her mailing list. She IS the Disney park princess and knows Disney backward and forward. And I am blogging as well at JenniferMaker.com, which is a little craft blog I started a couple of years ago to make ends meet. You can see and hear me in my craft show at https://www.youtube.com/c/jennifermaker . Many PassPorter readers and fans are on Facebook, in groups they formed like the PassPorter Trip Reports and PassPorter Crafting Challenge (if you join, just let them know you read about it in the newsletter). And some of our most devoted community members started a forum of their own at Pixie Dust Lane and all are invited over.

So we encourage you to stay in touch with us and your fellow community members wherever works best for you!

Best wishes for a wonderful and magical new year!

Go Back   PassPorter - A Community of Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Disney Cruise Line, and General Travel Forums > PassPorter's Walt Disney World Resort (Florida) > Getting There (and Back!): Your Journey to Walt Disney World
Register


Welcome! We're happy you've found the PassPorter Community -- the friendliest place to plan your vacation to Walt Disney World, Disney Cruise Line, Disneyland, and the world in general! You are now viewing the PassPorter Message Board Community as a guest, which gives you limited access. As our guest, feel free to browse our messages by selecting the forum you want to visit from the list below.

To post messages and ask questions, join our FREE community today and you'll get access to tools and resources not available to guests, such as our vacation countown timers, "living" avatars, private messaging system, database searches, downloads, and a special PassPorter discount code. Registration is fast, simple, and completely free. Just click the Join Our Community link.

If you think you've already joined, log in below now. If you don't remember your member name or password, please visit our Member Name and Password Recovery page. You are also welcome to contact us.

Forum Sponsor: Quicksilver Tours & Transportation
Learn Why PassPorter Recommends This Sponsor
 
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 04-22-2018, 08:39 AM   #1
xrosario
Community Rank: Trekker
 
xrosario's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: North Jersey
Concierge Level: 7
Posts: 1,183

Post Thanks / Like
What do I need to know when booking Southwest?

I usually fly Jetblue out of EWR but I'm toying with the idea of booking with another company if it will save me some money. I noticed when I search on sites like Expedia, Southwest isn't an option, do Southwest flights have to be booked from their own site?

They website shows 3 categories of options when booking, do most people just book the "wanna get away" fare? Also, I've heard a lot of passporters talk about booking priority boarding for seat selection, is this a must?

Do you feel it's been worth it to fly with Southwest?
xrosario is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-22-2018, 08:48 AM   #2
Lumieregirl
Community Rank: Globetrotter
 
Lumieregirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Virginia - a day's drive to WDW
Posts: 3,317

Post Thanks / Like
Yes, SW does not participate with the booking agents, so you do have to use their site. As time progresses, the 'wanna get away' fares will be bought up, so unlike other airlines where the prices fluctuate, with SW I think it only goes up. Besides that, each fare has different rules and restrictions, if I remember correctly, so be sure to note that.
Priority Boarding is a perk - I've never used it, and I've usually sat within the first 10 rows simply by being in boarding group A (assigned based on your online check-in time).
I've flown SW quite a bit and always been happy with them.
__________________
Don't let your heart be filled with sorrow, for all you know, tomorrow, the dream that you wish will come true.
Lumieregirl is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-22-2018, 09:05 AM   #3
chezp
PassPorter Message Board Manager
PassPorter Guide Author

Community Rank:
Legend VIP
 
chezp's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Maidstone, Kent, UK
Concierge Level: 3
Posts: 190,285

Post Thanks / Like
I've only ever purchased the Wanna Get Away fare, as it's always the cheapest.

We always book Early Bird Check In with Southwest, as it saves us the hassle of trying to deal with the boarding process 24 hours before our flight - on occasions, that's fallen when we're on cruises, so it's much easier to pay the money and know we'll be amongst the first on board.
__________________

Relaxing on board the Magic. The trip report for our back-to-back cruises on the Disney Magic has started!
My Countdown Counting down to: 2019
Happy New Year!
My PassPorter Bookshelf
My Previous Trips21 trips to WDW, 6 to Disneyland in California, 9 to Disneyland Paris, 1 to Hong Kong Disneyland, 1 to Tokyo Disney, 1 to Aulani, 1 to Hilton Head, 2 to Vero Beach and 13 Disney cruises on the Magic, Wonder, Dream and Fantasy
chezp is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-22-2018, 10:53 AM   #4
lovewdw2
Community Rank: Jetsetter
 
lovewdw2's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Pa
Posts: 2,557

Post Thanks / Like
I almost always use Southwest to travel to Disney- I usually buy the airline ticket as soon as the dates get released and it is always "wanna get away". I do not buy the Early Check-in going to Disney because I can usually be able to print the boarding pass on the 24 hour mark.

I only buy the Early Check-in coming home- because I don't want to waste my precious Disney time getting to the 24 hour mark to print the boarding pass. It's a pretty good deal.

Plus the fact you get to bring 2 pieces of luggage for free! Bonus!

Good Luck on getting a lower price on your airline tickets!
__________________
Kate in PA
All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them- Walt Disney
My Countdown Counting down to: Disney + Birthday = Can't Wait!
Let the Fun begin!
My Previous Trips1994 Dixie Landings, 1998 All Star Music, 2000 All Star Movies, 2002 Contemporary, 2003 Caribbean Beach, 2004 Outside WDW, 2005 Caribbean Beach, 2006 All Star Sports, 2007 Coronado Springs, 2008 Beach Club, 2012 Wilderness Lodge, 2013 Port Orleans Riverside, 2014 Caribbean Beach, 2015 Boardwalk Inn, 2015 Pop Century, 2016 Disneyland, 2017 Port Orleans French Quarter, 2018 Boardwalk Inn, 2018 All Star Music!
lovewdw2 is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-22-2018, 12:00 PM   #5
xrosario
Community Rank: Trekker
 
xrosario's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: North Jersey
Concierge Level: 7
Posts: 1,183

Post Thanks / Like
Aha, good to know about the early bird check-in. Glad to hear your experiences, I will definitely keep a lookout on Southwest's site for release dates. Thanks!
xrosario is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-22-2018, 12:06 PM   #6
CinderAbby
Community Rank: Legend
 
CinderAbby's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Eastern Massachusetts
Concierge Level: 3
Posts: 19,490

Post Thanks / Like
Keep in mind with SWA that the two "lower" options for booking - Wanna Get Away and whatever the other option is - are non-refundable fares. You can cancel/change flights and you will get a credit on your SWA account to be used within a year of the original purchase. If you don't use it for something else, you lose the credit. The first most expensive option (usually $400+ in my experience) is the only fully refundable fare. If there is any chance of you changing or cancelling your trip, SWA may not be the best route to go because of that. So just look into the terms very carefully before deciding.
__________________
Disney 2018 TR COMPLETED 10-20-18 POSTS 266 - 273
Looking for my previous TR's? Here they are
My Previous TripsAll WDW - July 1980 off property - July 1981 FW - July 1983 FW - July 1985 FW - August 1987 FW - July 1988 Treehouse Villas - July 1990 Treehouse Villas - July 1997 FW - August 2006 AS Sports, 1st time with DH and DD - August 2008 AS Sports - August 2009 AS Sports - August 2010 AS Sports - July 2011 AS Sports - August 2013 AS Music - August 2014 AS Music - August 2015 AS Music - August 2016 AS Music - August 2018 AS Music, Kate (lovewdw2) joined us for the weekend
CinderAbby is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-22-2018, 02:36 PM   #7
notjustamom
Community Rank: Globetrotter
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Long Island
Posts: 3,476

Post Thanks / Like
I fly SWA multiple times a year to Florida. I always book immediately when dates are released, always get Wanna Get Away and always Early Bird. The last few flights to So Fla I've been in the "B" boarding group even with EBCI. Obviously the popularity for it has grown tremendously, at least for flights from my tiny airport . Seating for the 3 of us has never been an issue.
__________________
Our last WDW trip as a family
My Countdown Counting down to: Magical family Gathering
Let The magic Begin...
My Previous TripsWDW 1982, WDW GF Sept. 1998 honeymoon, WL April 06, WL Nov. 08, BWV March 10, BCV Oct. 11, GF Nov. 13, BWI Jan. '15
notjustamom is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2018, 06:33 PM   #8
xrosario
Community Rank: Trekker
 
xrosario's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: North Jersey
Concierge Level: 7
Posts: 1,183

Post Thanks / Like
Quote:
Originally Posted by CinderAbby View Post
Keep in mind with SWA that the two "lower" options for booking - Wanna Get Away and whatever the other option is - are non-refundable fares. You can cancel/change flights and you will get a credit on your SWA account to be used within a year of the original purchase. If you don't use it for something else, you lose the credit. The first most expensive option (usually $400+ in my experience) is the only fully refundable fare. If there is any chance of you changing or cancelling your trip, SWA may not be the best route to go because of that. So just look into the terms very carefully before deciding.
Thats good to know, I've never had to cancel but it's not so bad knowing I can possibly still get a credit.
xrosario is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2018, 06:34 PM   #9
xrosario
Community Rank: Trekker
 
xrosario's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: North Jersey
Concierge Level: 7
Posts: 1,183

Post Thanks / Like
Quote:
Originally Posted by notjustamom View Post
I fly SWA multiple times a year to Florida. I always book immediately when dates are released, always get Wanna Get Away and always Early Bird. The last few flights to So Fla I've been in the "B" boarding group even with EBCI. Obviously the popularity for it has grown tremendously, at least for flights from my tiny airport . Seating for the 3 of us has never been an issue.
That's what I'm afraid of, not sitting together but it seems like a lot of families generally get seated together.
xrosario is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2018, 07:36 PM   #10
Pris
Community Rank: Explorer
 
Pris's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Bennington, NE
Concierge Level: 6
Posts: 10,556

Post Thanks / Like
We always fly SW when possible and I never pay for the early boarding, but we are 2 adults who don't have to sit together. As a matter of fact, we both like the aisle so often sit across the aisle from each other. I don't know the size of your family or if you have young children. SW does allow all families traveling with small children to board between the A & B boarding groups. If you fall into that category, you should not have much trouble getting seats together, as only around 60 people will have boarded before you. Most airlines only have really expensive non-refundable fees, and I don't know if any others have the really liberal no fees for changes and fully refundable flights, albeit for a credit rather than cash. the credits are very easy to use and have no restrictions (other than the expiration which is a year from the date of the original purchase).
__________________


My Countdown Counting down to: Westbound Panama Canal
Wondering through the Panama Canal
My PassPorter Bookshelf
My Previous TripsApril 2018 Wonder thru Panama Canal~Oct. 2016 POFQ~June 2016 Wonder to Alaska~April 2016 POFQ~Feb. 2016 POR/Magic/POFQ~Nov. 2015 POFQ~June 2015 Magic to Norway~May 2015 POFQ~March 2015 POFQ~Dec. 2014 POR~Sept. 2014 CSR~March 2014 POR~March 2013 POR~June 2011 WONDER to ALASKA~March 2011 POR~June 2010 GF/POLYNESIAN~ June 2009 MAGIC ~ March 2008 POP/WONDER/POFQ ~ Oct. 2007 POP ~ June 2007 CBR ~ March 2007 POP/POFQ ~ June 2006 POP ~ Dec. 2005 POFQ ~ July 2005 POR ~ Jan 2005 POP ~ July 2004 POR ~ Jan. 2004 CBR ~ June 2003 POFQ ~ March 2003 POFQ ~ March 2002 Courtyard ~ Dec. 2001 WL ~ July 2001 ASMU ~ March 2001 POR ~ July 2000 SWAN ~ July 1998 DxL ~ July 1992 DxL ~ May 1989 off site ~ Dec. 1976 Honeymoon off site
Pris is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-25-2018, 10:45 AM   #11
LoriF
Community Rank: Passenger
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 43

Post Thanks / Like
Southwest fares can change even after you book, so it's not a bad idea to check them now and then. Southwest offers new discounts almost every week that vary for each market and set of dates. I've seen my booked flights go up and then back down in price. Also, Southwest tends to offer some of the better prices on the earliest and latest flights. And last minute price decreases aren't unheard of either. I never assume anything with their pricing! And because they do not charge a change fee, you can rebook your flight for the lower fare and get a credit to use within a year from when you originally booked. Of course, when you have credits to use, it makes you want to travel again so they don't go to waste! I mostly use frequest flyer points and it's even easier because they just credit the points back to my account.
LoriF is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-30-2018, 01:25 PM   #12
baloocrew
Community Rank: Passenger
 
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 26

Post Thanks / Like
Quote:
Originally Posted by xrosario View Post
That's what I'm afraid of, not sitting together but it seems like a lot of families generally get seated together.
If sitting together is a priority, then you should plan on purchasing the early bird check in for sure (unless you have small children, under six I believe). Also, keep in mind that when flying to Orlando you are more than likely to have a lot of families with young children flying, and here's how Southwest boards...
passengers needing extra time/assistance, A boarding group, passengers with small children, B boarding group, C boarding group.

The last flight to Orlando where I didn't get EBCI and got in the B group there had to be at least 10-12 families with young children flying that were boarded between A and B. It took a loooong time and a good number of seats (no offense to families with young children...I've been there!). I decided right then and there to purchase EBCI for the return flight home while sitting at the gate watching all of those families board the flight, and I'm so glad I did. I didn't want to worry about getting a decent boarding number/group on my last day of vacation, and I didn't want to be separated from my son for the flight home (and I would never expect anyone to move so that we could sit together if I didn't purchase EBCI). Worth the $30.

Last edited by baloocrew; 04-30-2018 at 01:28 PM..
baloocrew is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2018, 01:37 PM   #13
Pris
Community Rank: Explorer
 
Pris's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Bennington, NE
Concierge Level: 6
Posts: 10,556

Post Thanks / Like
Depending on the size of your group, you could just purchase EBCI for 1 member of your party. That person can save the seats for the rest of you if it's just 1 or 2 seats.
__________________


My Countdown Counting down to: Westbound Panama Canal
Wondering through the Panama Canal
My PassPorter Bookshelf
My Previous TripsApril 2018 Wonder thru Panama Canal~Oct. 2016 POFQ~June 2016 Wonder to Alaska~April 2016 POFQ~Feb. 2016 POR/Magic/POFQ~Nov. 2015 POFQ~June 2015 Magic to Norway~May 2015 POFQ~March 2015 POFQ~Dec. 2014 POR~Sept. 2014 CSR~March 2014 POR~March 2013 POR~June 2011 WONDER to ALASKA~March 2011 POR~June 2010 GF/POLYNESIAN~ June 2009 MAGIC ~ March 2008 POP/WONDER/POFQ ~ Oct. 2007 POP ~ June 2007 CBR ~ March 2007 POP/POFQ ~ June 2006 POP ~ Dec. 2005 POFQ ~ July 2005 POR ~ Jan 2005 POP ~ July 2004 POR ~ Jan. 2004 CBR ~ June 2003 POFQ ~ March 2003 POFQ ~ March 2002 Courtyard ~ Dec. 2001 WL ~ July 2001 ASMU ~ March 2001 POR ~ July 2000 SWAN ~ July 1998 DxL ~ July 1992 DxL ~ May 1989 off site ~ Dec. 1976 Honeymoon off site
Pris is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 05-02-2018, 06:28 AM   #14
baloocrew
Community Rank: Passenger
 
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 26

Post Thanks / Like
Ugh....
baloocrew is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-14-2018, 07:27 PM   #15
Polish Hammer
Community Rank: Wayfarer
 
Polish Hammer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 188

Post Thanks / Like
Southwest is fantastic, and I use them whenever possible. I got their credit card which gave me 50000 miles which was enough for my family of three to fly Orlando twice, so it paid for itself easily. No baggage fees or fees for changing itinerary make it a winner in my book. Oddly, the only time I ever paid for the early booking had me boarding well after I usually do, I might have been in the middle of the Bs that flight when I’m always in the As.
__________________
Are we there yet?
My Countdown Counting down to: Walt Disney World Trip 2018
Finally!!!
My Previous TripsWDW Jun 1984, DL Jul 1997, WDW All-Star Sports Aug 2009, WDW Coronado Springs Nov 2013, WDW Coronado Springs Nov 2014, WDW Pop Century Nov 2017
Polish Hammer is offline  
 
Reply With Quote
Reply



Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Thank you to our forum sponsor:













Please login or register to hide these ads -- it's free and easy!

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:47 AM.

-->

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Feedback Buttons provided by Advanced Post Thanks / Like v3.4.0 Patch Level 1 (Pro) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2019 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
(c) 1998-2017 PassPorter Travel Press/MediaMarx, Inc.
Celebrating 19 Years of Making Dreams Come True
Ad Management plugin by RedTyger