Southwest Airlines: Tips to get early boarding, and your option to sit in the exit row (lots of legroom)
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Southwest Airlines: Open seating
Southwest Airlines has open seating policy, so you could sit anywhere you desire. Many of us would like to board first, and take up the first few rows, others would rather sit in the back or find exit rows. This policy is not exactly a big favorite by those who would rather know ahead of time where they’d be sitting. Others need that assurance.
And I’m sorry to tell you this, but there’s really no first class, business class seats in Southwest Airlines. Just a plane full of coach seats, with a few seats having more room than others.
Tips to get early boarding, sit in the exit row with Southwest Airlines
But for those of us who don’t mind following Southwest’s policy, there are tips and tricks to score an earlier boarding and as an option, sit in the exit row for more legroom.
Check-in 24 hours before the flight to score preferred boarding assignment
For Southwest, check in begins 24 hours before your flight. It’s best to be part of Group A, the group that’s asked to board first. You are assigned a number, and you line up accordingly, and enter once your group is called. Remember,
Here are my tips
➡️Prepare to check in right before the check-in time
➡️Set your alarm. Say your flight leaves at 8am on Thursday. So the check in for this flight is Wednesday at 8am (24 hours before the flight). For me, I’d set my alarm 5-10 minutes before the check in time.
➡️ I make sure to sign in to my Southwest account before 8am and prepare to check-in WITHOUT checking in yet
➡️Once the time changes to 8am, click check in using SW app or SW website
➡️You will not be able to choose seats at this time
➡️If you are quick to check in, you could end up in Group A – the first group to board the plane
NOTE: The above tips are actually pretty standard with many airlines that require you to check in 24 hours before the flight. Other airlines will have a different policy, so it pays to know their check-in and boarding procedures before flying.
Find a seat or section that works for you
➡️On the day of the flight, line up at your designated spot near the gate when the Southwest agent begins the boarding process and calls on Group A, and so on, and so forth.
➡️Once you enter the plane, you say your prayer or whatever hopeful ritual you do, and head over to the row you prefer.
Want more leg room? Check the exit rows
➡️Find the window seat row with NO seat in front of it. That’s one of my favorite places to sit
You could stretch your legs in full when you end up securing this seat. you could place your personal item all the way in front of this seat.
Who can sit in this Exit Row section
✅Passengers 15 years or older with the capacity to perform the applicable functions without the assistance of another adult, parent, companion, or relative. This is a big deal. This no joke, so make sure you”re able to do these functions
✅You will be asked to answer if you’re willing and able to assist
For more travel tips including how we flew to Hawaii for $11 per person, follow me at @daddytravelsmiles
Check out this reel I created on my Instagram account. Hope this helps you get a preferred boarding group, and score your choice seats on your next Southwest Flight.