If you've been on a Southwest flight, you've no doubt heard the Flight Attendant ask for change for a $20 bill. Well, those days are going the way of knee socks and penny loafers (did I just date myself?). Beginning September 9, Southwest will "flip the switch" and accept only credit and debit cards for beer, liquor, and energy drink purchases. Of course we'll still take your drink coupons as well.
So how does this change benefit you? If you're like me, you never carry cash anymore and you despise using airport ATMs that charge three bucks for the privilege to use their machine. The next time you get a craving for an adult beverage or energy drink inflight, you need only whip out your credit card and our Flight Attendants will swipe it on a the new handheld credit card device.
It's important to note that this does not signal the start for charging for things previously free to you inflight such as soft drinks, water, juice, snacks, blankets, pillows, and general human kindness. You'll still be receiving the same free amenities you're accustomed to on Southwest.
Anytime you make a major change like this on an airline our size, it's no small feat. I expect there will be a few bumps along the road but we have the best people in the industry and they are up to the task.
Interesting tidbit: Since Southwest doesn't have drink carts like most carriers, we had to come up with an inventive way for the Flight Attendants to take drink orders on a drink pad while swiping the card on the device without having to learn to juggle (although that would be entertaining). What resulted was a cool little white clipboard that will be carried by the Flight Attendants. It holds the drink order pad on one side and the device on the other. It's even ergonomically correct ). Check it out on your next Southwest flight after September 9.