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Early Bird Check In Didn't Take Even Though I Got a Confirmation

Explorer C

I know everything is crazy right now and I only JUST became reassured that our flight tomorrow will actually happen... So I don't want to bother the customer service staff with this right now. But I do have a problem that I will want to address when it makes sense:


I don't usually add Early Bird boarding or upgrades to my Southwest flights. But I also USUALLY check in my bag, and seeing the issues with bags over this awful holiday disruption, we made the decision to put everything in a carryon. And then - watching the news - I started worrying that our plane would run out of bin space and I'd have to give up my carry-on anyway, so I decided to add Early Bird.


But this was only 30 minutes before check-in. My card was charged, the Early Bird was confirmed, and so I did not check in immediately at 24 hours before the flight - and was dismayed to see us in the C group. So I paid an additional $80 for upgraded boarding and did get in the A group. 


I would like to get the $50 I paid for Early Bird refunded - am not happy about paying a total of $130. Do I have a chance at this?


Re: Early Bird Check In Didn't Take Even Though I Got a Confirmation

Aviator A

The later you add early bird to your reservation the less it is worth. Why? Because EB boarding spots are assigned in order of EB purchase. EB purchasers are not guaranteed A or even B Boarding positions and do sometimes end up in C group. 


All A-List and EB boarding positions are assigned 36 HOURS before flight time, so if you added it at 24.5 hours before flight time, you likely got the last one.  


Did your boarding pass show Early Bird? The reason I ask, is I really don't know what happens when someone buys EB after the 36 hour mark.


You can ask the airline for a refund. Click on contact us below to proceed.

Re: Early Bird Check In Didn't Take Even Though I Got a Confirmation

Aviator A

I'm surprised the system even let you make the purchase at that point. From Southwest:

"EarlyBird Check-In can be purchased up to 36 hours prior to a flight's scheduled local departure time."

As you purchased within 36 hours EarlyBird did not apply to that leg of the reservation and you got the boarding position associated with your manual check-in. 


It's worth writing to Southwest and requesting a refund, just be patient. 


Use the contact us link at the bottom of this page and send a message.