Southwest Is Testing out a Speedier Boarding and Deplaning Process

Nov 7, 2018

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Southwest Airlines is reimagining what boarding could look like on its flights in the future. The airline, which is known for its standard three-group, No. 1 to No. 60 boarding procedure, is looking to speed up the process.

As detailed on its website, Southwest is opening up another option for both boarding and deplaning at select airports. So, what’s different about the new process? Well, not all too much is changing with the letter and number you’ll see on your boarding pass, which varies based on what kind of fare you buy and when you check-in. However, Southwest says that it’s opening two doors to the aircraft instead of one — you’ll have the choice to board or deplane out of the front or the rear door.

If you’re flying in to, out of or connecting through Burbank (BUR), Long Beach (LGB), Sacramento (SMF) or San Jose (SJC) with Southwest, you might be able to test out the new boarding and deplaning process on your next flight.

Southwest says that the new option is intended to make the boarding and deplaning process faster for passengers. With the new process, the carrier is informing passengers that those choosing to board or deplane through the rear door may have to go up (or down) a set of stairs and walk outside. The carrier also says that preboard passengers will be required to use the jetbridge.

As a reminder, Southwest utilizes a three-group boarding process (A, B and C). In each of the groups, passengers are assigned a number 1-60 — both of which are based on when you check-in. The earlier you check-in, the lower your boarding group and position will be. Once a boarding group is called, passengers are invited to board in numerical order in an open seating plan — there are no assigned seats. Southwest offers several products to guarantee you an earlier boarding spot, either by purchasing a Business Select Fare (guaranteed A1-A15 boarding) or EarlyBird Check-In. Additionally, A-List and A-List Preferred Rapid Rewards members get preferred boarding.

H/T: Doctor of Credit

Featured image by Robert Alexander/Getty Images.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

WELCOME OFFER: 60,000 Points


CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on orders over $12 for a minimum of one year on qualifying food purchases with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Earn 5X points on Lyft rides through March 2022. That’s 3X points in addition to the 2X points you already earn on travel.
Intro APR on Purchases
Regular APR
15.99%-22.99% Variable
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.