You can check in for your Southwest Airlines flight using the following options:
- Online (web check-in)
- Mobile app check-in
(Android or iOS app)
- Airport self-service kiosk check-in
- EarlyBird check-in
(automatic, 36-hours-in-advance check-in for a fee)
- Airport curbside check-in
- Airport counter check-in
Southwest Airlines Check-in and Cut-off Times
- Online Check-in and Cut-off Time
You can check in online for your Southwest Airlines flight from 24 hours to 60, 90, 120, or 180 minutes before your flight’s departure time—depending on your departure and destination city. For the exact check-in and cut-off times, visit the Airport Information page.
- Mobile App Check–in and Cut-off Time
You can check in with your mobile app from 24 hours to 60, 90, 120, or 180 minutes before your flight’s departure time—depending on your departure and destination city. For the exact check-in and cut-off times, visit the Airport Information page.
- Airport Self-Service Kiosk Check-in and Cut-off Time
You can check in from the airport kiosk (self-check-in) from 3 hours to 30, 60, or 90 minutes before your flight’s departure time—depending on your departure and destination city. For the exact check-in and cut-off times, visit the Airport Information page.
- EarlyBird Check-in and Cut-off Time
The EarlyBird option checks you in automatically 36 hours before the scheduled departure time—which means you don’t have to check in. You’re automatically assigned a position for boarding earlier, so you get earlier overhead bin access for your carry-on bags.
- Airport Curbside Check-in and Cut-off Time
You can check in for domestic flights from the airport’s curbside at most U.S. airports—from 3 hours to 60 minutes before the scheduled departure time (depending on your departure and destination city). For the exact check-in and cut-off times, visit the Airport Information page.
- Airport Check-in and Cut-off Time
You can check in physically at the airport and collect your boarding pass from 3 hours to 30, 60, or 90 minutes before your flight’s departure time—depending on your departure and destination city.
- Be sure to collect your boarding pass and reach the gate area at least 10 minutes before your flight’s scheduled departure time. If you’re late, your reservation may be canceled, and you may be denied compensation.
- For exact times, refer to the Airport Information page.
- Download, print or email your boarding pass.
- If you forget or lose your boarding pass, use the airport’s check-in kiosk to print it.
- Keep enough buffer time for security checks, checking in baggage, etc.
Southwest Airlines Check-in Online
To check in online from Southwest Airlines’ website:
- Go to Southwest.com
- Select the Check in tab
- Enter your confirmation number and name (first and last)
- Click on the Check in button
- Complete your check in
Southwest Airlines Mobile App Check-in
You can use Southwest Airlines’ mobile app to:
- Make reservations, check-in, cancel or change domestic and international flights
- Check your flight status, gate information, and boarding position
- Download your mobile boarding pass
(iPhone and iPad users: save to Apple Wallet; Android users can save to Google Pay)
- Share your flight status with others
- Make or cancel your car reservation
- Access your Rapid Rewards account
- View weather and travel alerts
- Access useful airport information
- Use express check out
Southwest Airlines Airport (Self-Service) Kiosk Check-in
You can check in physically at the airport’s kiosk. This facility is available at all non-U.S. airports except Nassau. You can use any one of these methods to check in:
- Enter your confirmation number
- Enter your Rapid Rewards number
- Swipe any major credit card bearing your name
- Swipe your Rapid Rewards Membership Card
You will also be able to do the following things at the airport’s self-service check-in kiosk:
- Check luggage
- Only the kiosks located at the ticket counter can be used to check luggage
- Kiosks located in the lobby area cannot be used to issue bag tags
- Print your boarding pass
- Add a Rapid Rewards number to your reservation
- Upgrade to a Business Select Fare
- Change your flight
- Enter your name to the standby list
- Print your itinerary receipt
Passengers with the following types of reservations are not eligible for self-service check-in—and will need to check in at the airport ticket counter:
- Passengers traveling with paper tickets
- Unaccompanied minors
- Passengers traveling with pets
- Passengers traveling on age-qualifying fares
- Passengers requiring special assistance
Southwest Airlines EarlyBird Check-in
The EarlyBird option (USD 15–25 one-way per passenger) checks you in automatically before the traditional 24-hour period—up to 36 hours before departure.
An EarlyBird check-in doesn’t require you to check in because you’ll be automatically checked-in and assigned a position for boarding earlier—plus you’ll get earlier access to the overhead bin for your carry-on bags.
How to Purchase the EarlyBird Check-in
You can purchase the EarlyBird check-in option up to 36 hours before your flight’s scheduled departure time in any of the following ways.
- Online from Southwest.com
- Over the phone
- From Southwest Airlines’ mobile site
- From the official Android or iOS app
You can buy it as part of your original flight purchase, or add it later—at least 36 hours before your flight’s departure.
Southwest Airlines Curbside Check-in
You can check in for domestic flights from the airport’s curbside at most U.S. airports (but not for international flights). To check in from the curbside, you will need:
- Your photo ID
- Your flight reservation code
- Your flight number or electronic ticket number
For the exact check-in and cut-off times, visit the Airport Information page.
Southwest Airlines Airport Check-in
You can also check in physically at the Southwest Airlines’ airport counter. After you show your valid travel documents at the airport counter:
- You’ll be able to check in your bags
- You’ll be assigned a seat
- You’ll be given your boarding pass
For more information on Southwest Airlines’ check-in times and counters, visit the Airport Information page.
Southwest Airlines Boarding Process
When you check-in, you’ll be assigned a boarding group (A, B, or C) and position (1-60+). Your boarding pass will display a combination of your group and position (say A2). This represents a reserved spot in the boarding group at the gate. The numbered posts at each gate area indicate where you must line up. When your boarding group is called, you will have to find your designated spot in line and board the aircraft in numerical order with your group.
Southwest Airlines Boarding Order
Southwest Airlines’ boarding order is as follows:
- Passengers authorized to preboard get to go before everyone else—including Group A.
- Preboarding passengers include those with specific seating needs—such as those who have a disability or need assistance in getting to their seats or stowing assistive devices.
- Preboarding passengers can board with a travel companion for assistance, but they are not allowed to sit in an exit row.
- Group A 1–60+
- Family Boarding, Active Military and A-List/A-List Preferred
- Group B 1–60+
- Group C 1–60+