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Southwest Airlines Cancellation Policy, Refund Policy and Flight Change

Southwest Airlines

2702 Love Field Dr, Dallas, TX, US, 75235



Founded - 1971

Key people - Bob Jordan


In the whole world, Southwest Airlines offers the best cancellation policy as compared to all other airlines. From the day when Southwest Airlines came into existence, from that day onwards, Southwest Airlines stood out with its easy and friendly cancellation policies. Moreover, you can cancel the ticket without any penalty, but the cancellation must be made within the given time. If the passenger cancels any flight after the given time, then charges are applied according to the type of flight ticket.

Cancellation of business class, anytime, and senior tickets:

  • The business class and anytime tickets are very costly, but at the same time these tickets offer full refunds, but make sure that cancellation must be done at least 10 minutes before the departure.
  • If you cancel the ticket 1o minute prior then you are eligible for a 100 percent of refund.
  • The refund payment will be reflected in the source of payment if payment is made by cash or by rapid reward point then only.
  • If you are unable to cancel within the given time then the refund will be converted into reward points automatically.
  • There is the expiry date of the travel funds which is 12 months, is counted on the same day when the ticket is purchased.

Cancellation of wanna-get-away tickets

  • This class of tickets is very cheap and economical
  • If you want to cancel this ticket, then as per southwest's cancellation policy this ticket can be reused for any future flight but is not refundable.
  • The cancellation must be taking place 10  minutes before the departure of the flight.
  • The cancellation refunds must be utilized within 12 months( starting date is when the ticket is purchased)if you did not utilize the ticket within 1 year, then southwest still allows you to redeem the points with the fee of 100 USD.

Cancellation Policy for Award Tickets that are Booked with Points:

Southwest Airlines offers the cancellation of flight tickets that were purchased with reward points. There are no special policies for this, it is the same as the previous one.

  • The cancellation must be done 10 minutes before the departure of flights.
  • If a ticket is business class and anytime class, then there is a full refund. Else if the ticket doesn't come under the refundable category, then only reward points will be credited to the passenger account.
  • There is no penalty for the cancellation of flights.

 Cancellation policy for flight tickets whose payment is done by gift card or companion pass

Southwest Airlines allow to cancellation of the flight ticket which is paid for by the companion pass and gift card.

  • The travel funds are credited to the passenger account for the next purchase of a ticket. The taxes or miscellaneous charges are directly credited to the source of payment.
  • A ticket that is booked by redeeming the gift card is eligible for the reusable not for the refund.
  • The credit points have an expiry date of 12 months.

Steps to Cancel the Flight from Southwest Airlines

Southwest Airlines allow various ways to cancel a flight ticket:

  1. Via phone
  2. Via Online
  1. Go to the official website
  2. At the top of the screen there are two options available, select the cancel flight option.
  3. To Get the official flight booking details:
  • Enter the name
  • Confirmation code/Number
  • Select the cancel option.

IV. Select the search button

V. Select the desired flight, that you want to cancel.

  • If your ticket is refundable, then you have two options, either you can take the full refund or else get the reward points.
  • If your ticket is non-refundable, then you can get the points and use them for future flight bookings.

How to Modify or Rebook the Southwest Airlines flight

Same as the cancellation policy, the flight change policy is also simple.

  • If you want to make changes to the flight ticket then there are no surplus charges to do so.
  • If you change the class of the ticket, then you have to pay the additional amount which is the difference between both tickets, which means the new ticket is more expensive than the previous one.
  • By online you can also change the flight, you just need to call the reservation department agent, and ask for a specific modification.
  • Later you can personally check the flight details by entering the confirmation number and, personal details.

How to use the Refund points for future bookings

  • To use the refund points you must know the confirmation code which is associated with the refund points.
  • Always remember that these refund points will not apply to purchasing other passengers’ tickets.
  • Go to the official website, and check the validity and points before buying the ticket.
  • Enter the confirmation code.
  • And While buying the ticket, enter the required details, then proceed step by step.

Southwest Airlines Cancellation and Reimbursement FAQ's

☞ What is the No show policy of Southwest Airlines?

In this policy, travelers who own the Wanna getaway ticket can cancel their ticket 10 minutes before the flight departure. If the passenger does not use the funds within the specified period, then these funds are considered a “no show”, - and later all the funds will have vanished.

Travelers who own the business and anytime category tickets, then this "no show policy" is different for them. In this case, all the unused funds will be converted to reusable funds. Additionally, all the points of the canceled flight will be added to the traveler rapid reward account, and taxes and other charges added to the reusable travel funds.

☞ How much time the Southwest Airlines require to transfer the refunds?

Refunds directly depend upon the type of ticket. In the Southwest Airlines business and anytime category tickets apply to the full refund. So in this case require 10 working days to credit the amount to the source of payment.

☞ Is this possible that Southwest Airlines can change your flight without your concern?

Yes, it is possible. The airline has the authority to do so at any given time. Whenever this situation happened then you are eligible to receive the fare difference. Only after the flight change, the entire procedure is done.

☞ Can I cancel my southwest airline ticket without any cancellation fee?

Obviously yes,  flight cancellation is a very common thing. A traveler of southwest Airlines can cancel their ticket for any reason. Always make sure that the cancellations must be done within the specific period, which is mentioned in the cancellation policy. During the covid, the banality and change fees are removed to make travel more flexible for all passengers.

☞ What will Southwest Airlines do if I forget to cancel my flight?

To cancel the flight, the passenger is responsible because the passenger knows the reason behind this. If a passenger forgets to do this then there is "no show" fee applies to the passenger. This fee is mandatory to pay, if a passenger failed to pay the fee, then any future booking by passengers will be canceled by the airline. At last, that particular passenger will be banned from Southwest Airlines.

☞ What is the time limit of the travel credit the southwest airline?

Whenever a passenger cancels a non-refundable ticket, in that case, travel, credit is added to the passenger's account. A passenger has a 12-month time span to use these credited points. In any case, if the passenger forgets to use these point credits within the period, then Southwest Airlines allow them to use them by paying 100 USD.

☞ What is the maximum late time when I can cancel my southwest airline ticket?

It is always preferable to cancel the flight as soon as possible or whenever a traveler believes that he is not capable of taking the flight on time. The Southwest Airlines understand things well and allowed their travelers to cancel their flight, 10 minutes before the flight departure.

☞ Is this possible that someone else to use my flight credits?

All types of tickets on Southwest Airlines are eligible to transfer flight credit. These credits allow the traveler to transfer their credit to someone else. One restriction is that both travelers must be Rapid Reward members, and only one time this can be done.

If the bookings are made through the Southwest business channel, then the transfer of rewards is possible between the employees of the organization. Fares which are received as flight credit, for the "wanna-get away"ticket will not be transferred to anyone.

☞ Is the Southwest Airlines flights offers e-pass flights credit?

Never, because Southwest flight e-passes are non-revenue-generating travel passes. This is used for charity. In any case, these credits cannot be converted as a refund in the form of cash or points. These credit points are not related to the other credits of Southwest Airlines. The flight credit policy does not apply to the expiry dates of the Southwest flight.

☞ What are the reasons that my credit is not showing on my account?

Below are the main reasons :

  • You may not enter the correct rapid rewards number or you may forget to include this code while making changes, or cancel the booking. In this type of scenario, just enter your six-digit confirmation number.
  • It may be possible that the credit didn't belong in your name or that the credits were associated with the other passenger.
  • The credit points have expired.

☞ What is the procedure to check the flight credit balance?

There are two ways to do so.

  • Log into your account, select the payment section in the account, and then check the available balance of the credit points.
  • Directly go to the check travel fund page. Enter the six-digit confirmation code. (Which is displayed in green color over the cancel or changed mail).

☞ Is it possible to get a full refund for the "wanna-getaway" flight?

"Wanna get away" is an economical fare ticket, so this ticket is not refundable, but Southwest Airlines still offer a flexible cancellation policy. So whenever the wanna get away fare ticket is canceled, it offers reusability of the ticket fare, which is credited to the account in the form of flight credit. The flight credit can be used in the future to buy any ticket.

Points to keep in mind while applying for a refund:

  • If you booked the ticket in a group, then each traveler must retain their flight credit. Moreover, the individual credit must belong to the individual name of the traveler rather than the person who paid for the group tickets.
  • In the case of cancellation, you must cancel the ticket 10 minutes before the departure of the flight.
  • Also secure your six-digit confirmation number, because you'll need it for future bookings.

☞ What happens if I cancel my Southwest Airlines flight?

That depends completely on what fare type you have booked and whether or not you’ve booked a refundable Southwest Airlines ticket.

If you’ve purchased a basic economy Southwest Airlines ticket, you are not permitted to cancel the ticket for a refund after the 24-hour grace period from when your ticket was booked.

Note: The 24-hour grace period as per The Airlines Reporting Corporation (ARC). When you book tickets from the United states. 

If you have a non-refundable Southwest Airlines ticket you will be required to pay a few bucks domestic tickets and international ticket fees range from $200 to $500 (depending on the length of the flight. Afterward, you will receive the remainder of your fare, minus the fee, in the form of an e-Credit for use on a future Southwest Airlines flight.

If you have a Southwest Airlines refundable or flex ticket you can cancel anytime before the departure of your flight and you will be reimbursed on your original method of payment.

☞ Can I cancel a Southwest Airlines flight within 24 hours?

Yes, all customers will have 24 hours from the time of their original booking to cancel their Southwest Airlines reservation without being charged a Southwest Airlines cancellation fee, regardless of fare selected.

Note: The 24-hour grace period as per The Airlines Reporting Corporation (ARC). When you book tickets from the United States. 


☞ What happens if you cancel a Southwest Airlines non-refundable flight?

To cancel a Southwest Airlines non-refundable ticket you will be required to pay between $200-$500 depending on the length of the flight, location, and type of fare. The remaining fare will be given to you as an e-Credit for future use on a Southwest Airlines flight.

☞ Can I get Southwest Airlines compensation for a 2 hour flight delay?

You're legally entitled to get compensation if the delay is the Southwest Airlines responsibility and either: the replacement flight delays your arrival by 2 or more hours. your Southwest Airlines flight was canceled less than 14 days before departure.

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