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Old 01-24-2010, 07:03 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
22,563 posts, read 39,944,045 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PDF View Post
...I'd say you don't really need the early bird check-in.

I always get a window seat by checking in 24 hours prior for free online.
I have rarely NOT got a window seat with the 24 hr check in. Many times window seats are available in the B boarding class.

If Window is Mandatory and you don't want to take the 24hr chance, I would guess you could pay the $10 now and get an early priority on your March flight.

I almost exclusively use SWA on personal trips, even tho I have 1M miles and priority boarding on other carriers. SWA can be a bit crowded... (to say the least) BUT I think they have a good business model, and USA flights are short and connections are ez to tolerate.
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Old 01-24-2010, 09:25 PM
 
271 posts, read 1,487,279 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StealthRabbit View Post
I have rarely NOT got a window seat with the 24 hr check in. Many times window seats are available in the B boarding class.

If Window is Mandatory and you don't want to take the 24hr chance, I would guess you could pay the $10 now and get an early priority on your March flight.
I went ahead and purchased Early Bird Check-In for my March flight to Phoenix. So what now?

Do I need to check in again on the day of my flight? Where do I get my boarding pass?

Plus, I have a layover in El Paso.

Will I still be able to grab a window seat on this layover flight from El Paso to Phoenix?

(I don't know if this 'early priority' applies to the second flight when there's a layover.)
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Old 01-24-2010, 09:59 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
22,563 posts, read 39,944,045 times
Reputation: 23699
I've never used 'early-bird', you will have a 'blocked' space for priority boarding, but you will still need to do a 'check-in' to get your boarding pass. I would expect the earlier in the 24 hr before flight will give you better placement in the queue (of early bird's). You will be guaranteed a priority boarding spot even if you check in at the terminal (if, like me, you FORGET to check-in during 24 hr period). From what I understand... if everyone on your flight chose 'early bird', the queue would be the same as if NO-one chose, and SWA would collect the $10 from each. But, I don't know anyone who spends the $10, so you should be in the minority, and get a good chance at being one of the first 50 on the plane. Since many people prefer aisle seats, you are in good shape to get a window. I would chose a row near the rear that has an aisle seat taken, then you take the window, and chances may be good that the center seat will remain vacant.

You will also have a priority boarding spot on any connecting flights. If you are on a 'continuing' flight, i.e. same plane as originally boarded goes to your final destination, then you will stay on the plane at layover airport.
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Old 01-26-2010, 09:26 PM
 
271 posts, read 1,487,279 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StealthRabbit View Post
I've never used 'early-bird', you will have a 'blocked' space for priority boarding, but you will still need to do a 'check-in' to get your boarding pass. I would expect the earlier in the 24 hr before flight will give you better placement in the queue (of early bird's). You will be guaranteed a priority boarding spot even if you check in at the terminal
You will also have a priority boarding spot on any connecting flights. If you are on a 'continuing' flight, i.e. same plane as originally boarded goes to your final destination, then you will stay on the plane at layover airport.
I've never checked in for a flight on-line before. If I check in on-line, will I just print out my boarding pass? Does that mean I won't have to go to a kiosk at the terminal?
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Old 01-26-2010, 10:04 PM
 
14,260 posts, read 23,987,654 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jericho-79 View Post
I've never checked in for a flight on-line before. If I check in on-line, will I just print out my boarding pass? Does that mean I won't have to go to a kiosk at the terminal?
That is correct - unless you are going to check a bag.
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Old 01-27-2010, 01:12 AM
 
Location: Tucson/Nogales
17,398 posts, read 21,234,308 times
Reputation: 24221
If you find yourself sitting in a middle seat next to someone sitting next to the window, use your imagination. It might work to get her/him to move to another seat.

Lean over the person repeatedly, pointing and asking constant questions:

Is that a plane I see out there, off-course, heading straight for our plane?
That town below, way out there, is that Omaha? Nashville? Miami? Tokyo?
Is that black smoke I see coming out of one of the engines?

Or just have an uninvited chat with that person:

By the way, I've been in 3 plane crashes so far, how many have you been in?
(And carry along some pix's of plane crashes to show her which ones you were involved in)

By the way, I just got out of prison after 10 years for sexually assaulting a ten-year-old neighbor. And how about you, ever been to prison?

Or just eat bowl of undercooked beans before you board the plane.

Enjoy both your window seat and adjacent middle seat!
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Old 01-27-2010, 09:34 AM
 
1,492 posts, read 6,958,366 times
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I'd do the online checking 24 hrs in advance and just take what you can get! If you want a window you'll probably get it.

I won't travel Southwest w/ children- past 2 times didn't work out too well. When boarding, I simply take the first FOUR seats available and I put the youngest first, then next youngest, then oldest, then me- so I can keep an eye on them.

The last time, when we entered the plane in the long line....the people who chose Window/aisle; window/aisle; window/aisle (you see the pattern...only middle seats were empty) I simply just pointed...you - here, and you- there, and you over hear....and then I was to take a seat.
Well, the lady on the aisle had marked her territory like a dog/deer....I mean, she had her 'stuff' everywhere on the floor, on the empty seat...had a subway sandwich opened up/bag of chips, some fruit...and a drink....
she acted like she was going to have 30 minutes to eat a meal! And she slooooowly moved her things...the airline staff came up from the back saying "take your seats"....and of course I was like....just as soon as this lady gets a move on!

After a few minutes she was talking and laughing up a storm- my social butterfly got to sit beside her.

But flying Southwest EVERYONE should remember that EVERY seat is available and if you don't want someone sitting beside you then you should purchase two seats.

But the closer to the front you sit- the faster you can get off (and sitting after landing can be a problem w/ children so that's why I get them up front as possible)
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Old 01-27-2010, 09:54 AM
 
Location: Aurora, Colorado
2,212 posts, read 4,607,090 times
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I fly SWA all of the time and have never had an A group boarding pass. I do check in 24 hours in advance (more like 23 hours-ish) on line and still have never received the "golden ticket." I would never pay extra to get in the A group unless I had a connection or knew I wasn't going to be able to get to the airport in enough time to get a good spot in line for B group boarding. When you're in the A group, it doesn't matter if you're in the back of the A group line, you are still going to get a good seat.

That being said...with SWA, they have their boarding areas roped off and easy-to-see designated lines. If you have an A boarding pass, you can line up whenever you want and as long as you're in that group, you'll get a decent seat.

If you are in the B group, find the line marked B and get in it. If you are that choosy about where you sit, you will need to sit/stand in that line to ensure your spot and not sit in the seats in the boarding area.

I get to the airport early, find the B line and get in it. I have never NOT had a window seat. Many people in the A group are traveling together so they aren't going to spread out and only have the window seats. By the time they start boarding the B group, many seats towards the front have been taken, a handful of window seats are gone, the emergency exit rows are gone and the bulkead seats (which face each other) are gone.

A 737 usually has 23 rows of seats...that's 46 window seats. You CAN get a window seat if you're in the B group, but you do want to get as close to the front as possible in the B line.
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Old 01-27-2010, 08:36 PM
 
271 posts, read 1,487,279 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jlawrence01 View Post
That is correct - unless you are going to check a bag.
Darn! I'm going to have at least one piece of luggage that will need to be checked.

Does that mean I'll have to physically check in at the airport?
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Old 01-27-2010, 08:38 PM
PDF
 
11,386 posts, read 10,517,357 times
Reputation: 6606
Yes. How else will your bag get checked in? Don't worry, it's easy. They even have a kiosk in front of the counter. What I do is check-in 24 hours in advance online, but print out my boarding pass there.

You check in the bag on the kisok, place it in front of you, and that's it! You hardly have to talk to the agent at the counter. They'll just give you a baggage claim slip.

And you WILL get a window seat. I understand you over-worrying, though.
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