SOUTHWEST Airlines is trying to make amends for last year’s fiasco.
The airline canceled thousands of flights in winter 2022.
Southwest attributed the problem primarily to severe weather that hit the Midwest.
And even CEO Robert Jordan admitted in a statement to Axios that it was “very painful for our customers.”
But Southwest appears better prepared to avoid another disastrous winter.
In an interview at the Denver airport, Jordan said the company has made some big changes to its operations.
This includes increasing the number of trucks by 60 percent, establishing four new de-icing stations and introducing new software to improve weather forecasting and reroute routes and crew members.
In addition, Jordan said thousands of workers are being trained on how to properly de-ice its aircraft carriers and passenger boarding bridges.
Taking all factors into account, the CEO added that he was “feeling really good for the winter.”
However, nothing will change for Southwest customers: They will still have to expect fees this winter.
In fact, increased surcharges for bags have recently been introduced, which are as follows:
- The third or more checked bag increased from $75 to $125
- Overweight bags increased from $75 for up to 100 pounds to $100 for up to 70 pounds or $125 for up to 100 pounds
- Oversized bags rose from $75 to $125
- The price for unaccompanied minors increased from $50 to $100
- For pets, the carrier costs between $95 and $125, and the fees for pets within Hawaii remain the same
There is also a carry bag fee, which costs passengers $25.
This applies less the amount of hand luggage allocated to customers.
The fee is considered an “optional travel fee” and applies to one-way flights only.
There is also the EarlyBird check-in fee.
This allows customers to check in 36 hours before their flight, but the cost is between $15 and $25
Conventional check-in takes place 24 hours in advance.
Along with early check-in, passengers receive an earlier boarding position, giving them a better chance of getting the seat they want and earlier access to luggage storage for their carry-on luggage.
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