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Unaccompanied "Minors"

New Arrival

Evidently SW considers a 12 year old an adult? Why is age 11 the cuttoff for UM's? I have a 12 yr old granddaughter that wants to spend the summer with me but we are not comfortable with her flying alone. If someone is willing to pay for the service for an older child, why not take our money? 

9 REPLIES 9
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Re: Unaccompanied "Minors"

New Arrival

yes i have the same question, can we pay the UM fee for a 12 or 13 year old?  Since they've never flown alone and we love sw flights way more than United or frontier to get our child from Virginia to CO.

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Re: Unaccompanied "Minors"

Retired Community Manager

Hi @458434104,

 

We do not accept UM fees for Customers over the age of 12. We encourage our Customers to carefully consider whether their child is capable of traveling alone, as the Safety of our Customers and Employees will always be our top priority. If you do not feel that your child should travel without supervision, it would be best to purchase a ticket and travel with them. 

 

Lindsey

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Re: Unaccompanied "Minors"

New Arrival

Our daughter is now 12 and has been flying with SW as an unaccompained minor for 5 yrs now and we have never had a problem, everyone is very nice, and attentive.  However, she is now 12 and we are wondering if there is a different protocol we should now follow?

 

Thanks!

 

Re: Unaccompanied "Minors"

New Arrival

At age 12 you can no longer send her as an 'unaccompanied minor'.  Not sure what they think the term 'minor' means.

Other than flying WITH her your only option is an Escort Pass. You can obtain one at the ticket counter, it will let you go through security, take her to the gate and wait with her. Whoever is waiting for her on the other end can do the same to meet her at the gate. Since she's flown before this is probably a comfortable option for you.

 

For me this isn't comfortable as not all of my grandchildren have flown before. First time on a plane can be extremely scary, especially when you add in all the strangers and having to find a seat. There are many, many, many reasons someone would want to pay extra to ensure their child had a safe and stress free trip. I think SW has dropped the ball on this one. I'm still really ticked off about it!

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Re: Unaccompanied "Minors"

New Arrival

I’m trying to book a flight for my 3 year old on a flight my husband and I are already booked on. Someone else booked and purchased our flights (for work). The website won’t allow us to book her flight alone because she looks like an unaccompanied minor. Help! Calling customer service but wait time is 64 minutes and only 3 seats are left on this flight. Thanks!

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Re: Unaccompanied "Minors"

Top Contributor

@MJStewart wrote:

I’m trying to book a flight for my 3 year old on a flight my husband and I are already booked on. Someone else booked and purchased our flights (for work). The website won’t allow us to book her flight alone because she looks like an unaccompanied minor. Help! Calling customer service but wait time is 64 minutes and only 3 seats are left on this flight. Thanks!


Last time I needed to do this (several months ago) there was a prompt to enter the confirmation number and name of an adult who will also be on the flight. Sounds like you are not seeing that prompt so you will need to call to complete the booking. 

 

--TheMiddleSeat

 

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Re: Unaccompanied "Minors"

Top Contributor

@MJStewart wrote:

I’m trying to book a flight for my 3 year old on a flight my husband and I are already booked on. Someone else booked and purchased our flights (for work). The website won’t allow us to book her flight alone because she looks like an unaccompanied minor. Help! Calling customer service but wait time is 64 minutes and only 3 seats are left on this flight. Thanks!


The "three seats" might be at that particular price - so not desirable to pay more, but you may still have room to get on the plane.

 

But as @TheMiddleSeat said - there should be an option after you click through to enter the confirmation number and name of one of the two of you to confirm that the child willi be accompanied.

 

 

Home airport MDW, frequent visitor to MCO to see the mouse.
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Re: Unaccompanied "Minors"

New Arrival

Why would SW consider a 12 year an adult??? Every 12 year old doesn’t mature as fast as some may. You should really change your policy when it comes to UMs

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Re: Unaccompanied "Minors"

Active Member

@latoyah2323 wrote:

Why would SW consider a 12 year an adult??? Every 12 year old doesn’t mature as fast as some may. You should really change your policy when it comes to UMs


Southwest does not consider a 12-year-old to be an adult. They simply do not allow children 12 or over to travel as an unaccompanied minor ("UM"). 

 

The ultimate responsibility for a child lies with the child's parent or guardian. If a parent/guardian does not feel safe allowing their child to travel by themself, then they should travel with the child.

For what it's worth, I made frequent trips on Southwest by myself when I was 12 and lived to tell about it.