A guide to the Southwest change flight policy

Posted on January 13, 2017 by in Southwest Rapid Rewards

Southwest change flight

What’s the Southwest change flight policy?

We recently wrote about Southwest’s excellent cancellation policy, where you can cancel a nonrefundable flight within 24 hours of booking without penalty. We’ve highlighted various Southwest policies before; while Southwest’s cancellation policy is one of the best there is among airlines and a great reason to fly with them, what if you just need to change your flight rather than cancel it?

Most major airlines charge a fee if you need to change your flight and it’s often an expensive business. With Southwest Airlines, however, there’s no change fees if you need to modify your plans, which is great for flexibility. Southwest is the only major airline that never charges change fees. It’s a very generous and handy policy if you need to ensure you have a flight booked, but with the peace of mind that you can change without incurring a costly fee. This is whether you’ve booked a domestic or international flight with Southwest; some major airlines charge up to $150 just to change a flight!

Southwest change flight

You’ll only pay the cost in fare difference, and that’s only if the flight you change to is more expensive. If it’s a cheaper fare, this is where it gets interesting…

If you find a cheaper flight on Southwest than the one you’ve already booked, you can change flights without penalty and you’ll also get a refund for the difference, even on award tickets. The refund for a cash ticket is in the form of credit to use on a future Southwest flight, but if you used points to purchase your flight, you’ll get a refund of points back to your account.

Even if you don’t need to change your flight but are flexible enough to be able to, you can benefit from this policy to get a cheaper fare by literally just spending a minute every day checking to see if the price has dropped.

How do I use the Southwest change flight policy?

It’s easy and fast to change your flight on Southwest Airlines. Log in to your Rapid Rewards account and click on ‘Change Flight’.

If you don’t have a Rapid Rewards account, retrieve your reservation here by entering your flight confirmation number and passenger name and you can change your flight here instead.

Southwest change flight

What else do I need to know about the Southwest change flight policy?

There’s no limit as to how many times you can change your flight without incurring a fee, so if the price keeps dropping, you can just keep changing!