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Southwest Airlines Community

Flying for the deaf/HOH

Explorer C

I am flying for the first time since losing all of my hearing on my right ear and I am wondering if Southwest offers any help for my disability? From what I experience in daily life I'm fairly sure that the engine noise will make it nearly impossible to fully understand any announcements while in flight solely using my ears. 


Can you help me with seating in the front so I can have a clear line of sight to the air hostess for lip reading during safety presentations or any in flight announcements? Do you offer closed captioning on in flight entertainment?


Re: Flying for the deaf/HOH

Aviator B

Customers Who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing


Customers who are deaf and hard of hearing may call our Teletypewriter (TTY) number, 1 (800) 533-1305, and speak with a Southwest Airlines Customer Representative. Our Customer Representatives can assist with making reservations and answering general questions. Additionally, we offer a video relay service at SWAVRS.TV, and there are TTY Phones located in each of the airports we serve.
Because it is sometimes difficult for our Employees to know when a Customer is deaf or hard of hearing, if the Customer identifies his/her needs to our Customer Service Agent at the departure gate and to our Flight Crew once onboard the aircraft, we can be sure to establish an acceptable means of communication. Upon such request, we will ensure that the Customer has prompt access to the same information provided to other passengers in the gate area and onboard the aircraft (e.g., boarding and baggage claim information, schedule changes, flight Safety information, etc.).
Upon arrival at the airport, please inform a Southwest Airlines Agent or Skycap at your first point of contact (either at the Skycap podium or ticket counter) if you need assistance within the airport. If assistance is needed during boarding or onboard the aircraft, please notify our Employees at the departure gate and, if applicable, one of our Flight Attendants when you board the aircraft.

Re: Flying for the deaf/HOH

Retired Community Manager

Hi @HermioneSnape,


Thanks for posting in the Southwest Airlines Community - welcome! 


We do offer preboarding for individuals with a disability who need a specific seat or just need a little extra time getting situated onboard. When you get to the gate area on the day of your flight, you can speak with the Customer Service Agent to let them know that you need to preboard, and he/she will provide you with the appropriate documentation. 


To answer your question about closed captioning, we do offer it for both TV and movies if you are using an Apple device. If you are using an Android device, you will have closed captioning across movies.


Hope this is helpful information! We look forward to seeing you, and please don't hesitate to reach out if you have any other questions.



Re: Flying for the deaf/HOH

Explorer C

I tried to contact your video relay service at SWAVRS.TV on my videophones (ie: Convo, P3, SmartVP, Sorenson VP). It didn't not work on all videophones. "SWAVRS.TV" did not meet FCC's requirements. More info at

Re: Flying for the deaf/HOH

Explorer C

Thanks for posting this..  I am Deaf, born Deaf.  


1. Check in (check bags, get your boarding pass, etc).  They can't provide preboarding.

2.  Once you get past security, you can ask any one of the individual gate agents for preboarding-give them your ticket, and they'll give you preboarding on the basis of disability.  


3.  Can anyone answer the concerns about understanding announcements once onboard?  I have the same concerns-I can't hear announcements, so the only way seems to be to call down a stewardess and that is always a crapshoot-many don't explain what the announcement is (ex: we're delayed 20 minutes, please wait..).  Thank you!


Oh yes, and you can identify yourself as Deaf/hard of hearing when you buy your boarding pass online, FYI.  And then yes, again at the gate or at the front when you check your bag, let them know again.