Whether you’ve been the parent or the innocent bystander, you’ve probably encountered a child at some point during your airline travels. The parent hopes that by some miracle the child will behave better than they have ever before, and the bystander hopes that too, dodging the row or seat with anyone who wouldn’t be able to help themselves to the oxygen mask.
I myself have two memorable experiences with young travelers—one with two Unaccompanied Minor brothers, who had everything they could need to entertain themselves and had memorized the Flight Attendant PAs, and one in which the child in the row in front of us scaled the seat and became “my” child, landing haphazardly on my tray table. The tricks here are food, entertainment, and mostly luck, because let’s face it—children are unpredictable.
Necessities for the Flight
Here are a few items that I find essential for a smooth flight with kids:
Antibacterial hand wipes
Snacks in a gallon-size bag (minimizes spills)
Headphones and tablet
Coloring pages affixed to clipboard and crayons
Candy for takeoff and descent (relieves altitude pressure)
A small surprise
Interested in learning more family tips or sharing your knowledge with others? Check out our Family Travel Discussion Forum.
Inflight Fun: Air Travel I Spy
Parents, keep your kids occupied looking for the following I Spy guessing game during your travel adventure and look for the following! Can you find all of these items to the left? How many of each have you seen?
Tips from Southwest Employees
Nobody spends more time in the air than our Southwest Flight Crews. Here are some suggestions on keeping kids happy in the cabin from a few of our travel pros.
“Check your bags. Only bring what you need. Food and activities are great to include on your packing list. Drink a big coffee and have low expectations. I have a no-getting-up-from-your-seat rule unless it’s a dire bathroom emergency—I make sure that they use the bathroom before and after the flight.”
—MDW Flight Attendant Elizabeth Weis
“Bring ring pops for their ears. You can buy a pack of four for $1 at the Dollar Store.”
—OAK Flight Attendant Leesa Downie
“I like to bring something new for them to open during the flight. Even if it’s just a $0.97 Hot Wheels car, my son gets excited because it’s new. Also, be sure to bring snacks and an iPad with headphones. Make it feel special or exciting, and they will do great.”
—LAS Flight Attendant Tina Webb
“Do what you do in the car. And as far as fun entertaining things, do not bring slime, play dough, glitter, or confetti.”
—MDW Flight Attendant Elisa Brown
TSA Reminders for Traveling with Kids
Traveling with Children 12 Years Old or Younger
Rest easy, adults and their accompanied children will not be separated at the TSA checkpoint. Children 12 years old or younger may leave their shoes on during screening and pass through the walk-through metal detector. Should the metal detector’s alarm sound, TSA may allow the child to exit and re-screen in an attempt to resolve the alarm, and TSA may use other methods of screening to reduce the need for a pat-down. A child can use the advanced imaging technology screening if he or she is able to stand in the required position for five seconds. Like all carryon baggage, children’s belongings, which may include but is not limited to backpacks, toys, blankets, stuffed animals, and strollers, must be screened through the X-ray belt. Any items too large to fit on the belt will be inspected by TSA officers.
Traveling with Infants or Toddlers
TSA defines infants as children who must be carried by an adult through the screening process and toddlers as children who need assistance from an adult to walk. If you’re traveling with an infant or toddler, you can carry him or her through the walk-through metal detector, but may be subject to additional screening. While all strollers and carriers are not permitted through the metal detector, carrying your infant in a sling through the metal detector is permitted. If you are traveling with formula, breast milk, or juice, please notify a TSA officer at the checkpoint and remove these items from your luggage. These items are not subject to the 3-1-1 Liquids Rule. TSA may want to test a small amount of the liquid for explosives or check for concealed prohibited items. If you would prefer them not to open the container or X-ray the liquid, you can request alternate methods of screening, which will include a pat-down and screening of other carryon property. You can also bring ice or gel packs to cool formula, breast milk, or juice as needed. Gel or liquid-filled teethers, canned, jarred, and processed baby food is also permitted, but may be subject to additional screening. As always, refer to www.TSA.gov for more information.
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Being an Employee in the airline industry should make me an expert packer, but judging by number of times I’ve had to pack and repack my bags to make everything fit just right, I’m far from that. As the saying goes, practice makes perfect, and sometimes a few tips friends or the internet can help. There are so many possibilities with travel and countless variables involved in preparing for a trip! What you pack for this week’s trip might not suffice for the next. My 17-day trip to Europe years ago stands as the longest trip I’ve taken, and I am proud to have traveled with only one carryon. I certainly learned a lot and below are several tips that will hopefully help you with your next big adventure.
What to wear on the plane:
Shirt with a cardigan or jacket
Pair of jeans
Hat or scarf (optional)
What to pack in your carryon:
Five shirts (one for a nicer outing)
One pair of shorts
Extra pair of pants or shorts
Extra pair of comfortable shoes
Undergarments (enough for one week)
Two items for layering (tank top or extra layer)
Seasonal item as necessary (warm coat or rain jacket)
That one item you absolutely can’t live without
Any necessary electronics and cords
Toiletries and laundry detergent pods
Tips From SWA Travel Experts
“All your clothes should be interchangeable. Pick a neutral shade and pack things that will complement each other. I usually choose black, gray, and maroon. Make an initial clothing pile, then cut it in half. You can re-wear garmets, but it depends on where you’re traveling. I only bring one swimsuit, but I bring two pairs of jeans for two weeks depending on the weather. Wear your bulkiest shoes—sneakers or boots—and then pack another pair that matches everything.” —CS&S Post Production Support Analyst Kelsey Richerson
“As a military spouse, I have tried to minimize during my coast-to-coast travels. Ziplock bags are my friend, black and gray clothing are staples for me, and I toss in some color with tank tops or t-shirts for layering.” —DEN Flight Attendant Kim Colombero
“Until I had to learn how to pack for week-long trips in a carryon for work, I had never been the best at packing. I turned to YouTube and discovered ranger rolling techniques used by the Army. If you’re looking for ways to fit more than planned into a bag, I highly recommend looking it up!” —Culture Services Specialist Craig Wright
“Laundry pellets are a must.” —BWI Flight Attendant Tony Nichols
“Count your valuables and things you absolutely don’t want to forget and remember that number. For example, 1) cell phone, 2) ID, 3) wallet, 4) camera, 5) cardigan. Anytime you leave somewhere—the TSA checkpoint or the hotel for example, all you have to do is count one, two, three, four, and five, to ensure you have your most important items. This technique helps me make sure I don’t leave my cardigan at a restaurant or my phone at the security screening.” —Marketing Analyst Harold Page
Connections & Cleaning
There are a variety of items on the market today to help you launder on the go. Laundry detergent pods are an easy and light addition to your suitcase. Making time to do laundry can be key in streamlining your packing list and ensuring your clothes can last longer than five days. Take it up a notch from the good ‘ole rinse in the sink by bringing along a few laundry pods— packing a plastic bag to prevent detergent from accidentally getting all over your clean clothes. Seek out a local laundromat once you arrive or use your favorite travel recommendation site to research ahead of time.
My father, HOU Freight Agent David Boren, and I circa 2010 waiting outside a local laundromat in Cinque Terre, Italy. Mid-way through my 17-day European adventure, we stopped at a local laundromat in Riomaggiore, Cinque Terre, Italy. This was vital, because we were traveling in the summer months, and I was curious as to how myself and the passengers around me would survive a lengthy flight home. Our visit at the laundromat proved to be more than worthwhile! We met several locals who gave us invaluable restaurant tips and quite a few Americans who were backpacking their way through their bucket list. The laundromat was a hub of buzzing information and warm exchanges on past and present adventures—with WiFi being an added bonus. I learned a lot about local culture and things to do, all while cleaning my clothes!
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“I’m proud to wear a Southwest uniform. You know you’re a part of something big.”
—Lt. Col. Jamie Hunt, First Officer Photo by Steve Meckler
When Lt. Col. Jamie Hunt transitioned to the Air Force Reserve from active duty, he could only imagine one place to continue his career: Southwest Airlines. After years onboard as a happy Customer, he was able to join the Family in 2014. Living with a Servant’s Heart is an integral part of who Jamie is as a person, Employee, and veteran. Whether he’s ensuring the safest flight possible for our Customers, teaching as a reservist instructor, or volunteering with the Arizona Rangers and Tucson Police Department, Jamie is committed to serving his community. Southwest is proud to recognize him for his dedication to giving back and embodiment of the Southwest Spirit.
—Erin Boren, Communications & Outreach
Think Small “The littlest things we do can have a big impact. Small gestures make a huge difference to someone having a difficult time.”
Be Prepared “No matter how automated flying becomes, Southwest Pilots still do a tremendous amount of hand-flying to maintain our skill set.”
Museum Musts “I’m originally from Boston, but we have been in Tucson on and off with the military. I always recommend the Pima Air & Space Museum and the Titan Missile Museum.”
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Ashley's dog, Harper
I may be a cat person, but that doesn't mean I can’t appreciate dogs and their Fun-LUVing Attitudes. As it’s Work like a Dog Day, I thought I’d switch my cat ears for those of man’s best friend. (Unfortunately for us cat-lovers, Work like a Cat Day couldn't exist unless work involved a long nap in the sun, and that sounds like a vacation!) Coming home from a long day, you can always find your dog awaiting your turn of the door knob. I work with some amazing people, a few of which have dogs (take Cindy, for example, pictured above with her dog Miyagi), and their dog stories are seemly endless.
Working like a dog is not synonymous with being a “work-a-holic.” Working like a dog just means you work hard—and in my opinion, it’s much more than just working hard. Here at Southwest we value Living the Southwest Way, which includes having a Warrior Spirit, a Servant’s Heart, and a Fun-LUVing Attitude. These are qualities some of our best fur-friends have: the willingness to get the stick you threw across the yard at whatever cost, the puppy love when you’re feeling down, and the jump of joy when you get home from work. When the work piles up and time seems to drag, sometimes it’s a kind word or a surprise smile from one of my Fellow Coworkers that makes the day worth something.
We should always remember the Southwest Way and pair it with the traits our dogs: a happy, friendly, renewed spirit. They have such a joy when you return home. Carry that happiness with you throughout your day. Be happy to see everyone, from your friends to your office mates. Remember that everyone you come in contact with is another opportunity to brighten the world. And no matter how long you've been apart, your dog welcomes you with a renewed spirit on your return. When you return to work each day, walk in with a renewed spirit, ready to take on your responsibilities with a smile.
Simply put, we should all remember to let the work go to the dogs—today and every day!
Traveling with your best fur-friend soon? Southwest Airlines welcomes small vaccinated domestic cats and dogs in an appropriate pet carrier in the aircraft cabin. Find more information on our Traveling with Pets page.
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If you're like me, you take around a million photos on any given vacation—sometimes it's even more, depending on the length of the trip. Obviously I can't post all of them, so I do my best to pick out my favorites. Here's a list of my must-have pics for your Instagram feed. Be sure to use #SWApic and check out our Southwest Instagram!
1. In Your Bag: Are you packing light, heavy, or somewhere in the middle? And what's your must-have, can't-leave-without item?
2. On the Way: Get excited! Travel adventures have just begun. Snap a pic on the parking shuttle or when you're leaving for the airport.
3. At the Gate: If the adventure didn't start on the parking shuttle, it has definitely started here! Show some excitement for your Southwest aircraft or your awesome Business Select boarding pass.
4. In the Air: The Window Seat pic is the classic travel picture. Whether the picture's of the wing, the clouds or the landscape below, it's bound to be beautiful!
5. On your Plate: While on vacation, you should always try the local food. Don't forget those delicious flavors—capture the memory!
6. Around you : There are so many things to see and do at any of our Southwest destinations! Be sure to properly document those beautiful sites and exciting experiences.
7. With the Group: At Southwest, our Purpose is connecting People to what's important in their lives—traveling brings people together. If you're traveling with or meeting others, you definitely have to get a group shot.
Have other photo ideas? Let me know by commenting below. Happy travels!
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Like any time-contentious traveler, I have at least an hour of downtime before my flight begins boarding. When I’m traveling with my family, waiting time seems to go by even more slowly. On my last vacation with my family, we had a two hour layover. Normally we play a card game, but unfortunately, we (cough, cough—my dad) had forgotten to bring a deck of cards. Luckily, my sister came up with some gate games to keep us busy. Try one of these simple games I’ve Southwest-ified the next time you’re waiting to board.
I Find, I Fly
Airports are extremely busy places, especially during the summer. You will see varieties of travelers, suitcases, Employees… the list goes on! See how many of these things you can find before you fly!
Brightly colored suitcase
Passenger with a pet
Southwest airplane with a wifi dome
Passenger with a flip phone
Southwest Employee badge
Musical instrument or instrument case
Southwest airplane with Split Scimitar winglets
Re-usable water bottle
Passenger using a blanket
Southwest Flight Attendant
Passenger using two kinds of electronic devices
Weather status monitor
The number four
Orange Safety vest
AIR / FARE
I may not be a math genius, but this counting game is a ton of FUN! Start by creating some sort of order with Fellow Passengers—who will go first? Second? The person starting the game starts by saying, “One.” The second person says, “Two,” and so on in the set order. On multiples of five (five, ten, 15, 20, etc.) the player must say “Air” instead of the number, and on multiples of seven (seven, 14, 21, etc.), the player must say “Fare.” When this happens, the rotation switches directions. If someone incorrectly says “Air” or “Fare,” doesn’t switch directions, or says the wrong number, you must start counting from the beginning. Give it a try! You’ll be surprised on how quickly Air and Fare become a little tricky to keep straight.
Example: One, Two, Three, Four, AIR, Six, FARE, Eight, Nine, AIR…
Airport Ticket Takeoff
As I’ve mentioned, there are a variety of things to be seen at the airport. So much goes into the aviation industry; you could never know all of it. This game will make you search high and low for airline related words! To play, one player starts by naming an airline-related word, like Airport. Then since the word ends in a T, the second player must say an airline-related word beginning with T, like Ticket. Similar to Air / Fare, the players take turns in a specific order adding words to the list. The goal is to keep the list going as long as possible without repeating answers. Good luck!
Example: Airport, Ticket, Time, Employee…
Speaking of airplane words, fuselage is a funky word that average travelers may not hear so often. This game is simple. Players aren’t allowed to show their teeth, and each player takes a turn saying, “Fuselage.” It’s harder than it seems. The longer you concentrate on not showing your teeth the funnier the word fuselage seems. If a player shows their teeth, he or she is then disqualified from the round. The goal is to be the last Passenger to show his or her teeth. Want to know a tip? Become more and more animated as the round goes on, and it’ll be harder for other players to stay focused on not showing their teeth!
We’re always looking to share some LUV with our Customers. Check out our post on Games of LUV! Have some gate games of you own? Share them with us by commenting below!
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Our Q&A blog series answers common questions about aviation and Southwest Airlines. Our next question about our Fleet is answered by Editorial Team Intern Erin Boren. Have a question of your own? Leave us a comment!
At Southwest we believe in variety: Peanuts or pretzels? Aisle or window seat? Gray or red Flap-track fairings? Wait—what are fairings?
I’ve been traveling my whole life, but there is plenty I still don’t know about the aviation industry. For example, what are fairings? And for that matter, how can you tell the Southwest planes apart? There are more than 600 red-bellied Boeing jets split between five different categories, so it definitely takes a keen eye to notice their differences. Thankfully, Richard West, Southwest’s Corporate Historian, has enlightened me, so now I can enlighten you!
Our 737-300 series aircraft can hold either 137 or 143 seats and may or may not have Blended Winglets (the vertical end on each wing). They’ll have gray fairings (the canoe-shaped attachments on each wing), and as you’re looking out from the gate area windows, you’ll notice 12 windows back from the cockpit there’s a gap. Fun fact: The gap is a space left for air conditioning duct work. The duct work funnels air from the AC units (which we affectionately refer to as “Herb’s Stills” because of their appearance) located underneath the cabin to the overhead air vents. Our 737-500 series also has gray fairings, but holds 122 seats, doesn’t have winglets, and there are eight windows before the gap on these planes.
Our 737-700 series hold 143 seats with 11 windows before the gap. These planes have winglets and have red fairings. Similarly, our 737-800 series also has winglets and red fairings, and some -800 planes now have the newest Split Scimitar Winglets. The -800s are our largest planes, which hold 175 seats and have 12 windows before the gap—notice the double-emergency exit doors over the wings.
What’s that hump toward the back of the plane? That’s the wi-fi dome, which you’ll find on both our -700 and -800 series aircraft. These planes are also a little bit taller than our -300s and -500s.
Can you guess this aircraft's type? It's a little tricky! This is a rendering of a -700 series aircraft, but it doesn't have winglets. In 2003 we began retrofitting the -700s in our existing fleet with winglets to save on fuel costs. It's also missing one more thing... can you tell? Leave us your answer in the comments!
Lastly, each of our planes has a specific tail number—these act like social security numbers in that no other plane in the world will share this (crazy, huh?). You can tell the aircraft series by these numbers. For example, -300s are numbers 300-399 and 600-699, and -500s are 501-549. But I’ll let Richard tell you all about tail numbers…
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Today, July 13th, happens to be Embrace Your Geekness Day, and here at Southwest Airlines, we’re celebrating a special type of geekness—avgeekness! Avgeeks are aviation geeks, who love anything and everything from airline brand memorabilia to airplane parts. Today (and every day) avgeeks should embrace their geekness and showcase their Fun-LUVing, quirky side! Southwest Airlines sure does LUV you for it!
I’ve gathered three of our sincerest avgeeks to explain their geeky, airline-related favorites! Enjoy! And if you’re an avgeek, share your stories with us by commenting below!
Sunset and Sunrise Flights
Communication Senior Specialist Dan Landson,
Windown Seat Sunset View
My inner avgeek comes out every time I step on a plane early in the morning or in the evening. There’s no greater feeling in the world (at least in my mind) than seeing the sun rise or set while sitting in the window seat of one of our 737s. The views are priceless, and it really makes you slow down and reflect. Sunrises are unique in the sense that as the sun comes up, it represents a new day, a clean slate, and a chance to relax before the day really takes off. If you catch me on an early morning flight, you’ll usually find me staring out the window while enjoying a cup of LIFT coffee.
On the opposite side of the spectrum, sunsets are just as beautiful as sunrises. The colors are usually much more pronounced, usually are much more colorful, and they bring closure to the day. In the evening, I’m often staring out the window reflecting on the day and counting my blessings for how lucky I am to work for the best Company in the world!
I LUV taking photos of sunrises and sunsets since it’s one of the most spectacular views we are afforded by flying at 40,000 feet, and of course, those photos are hashtaged on Twitter: #Avgeek.
Customer Advocacy & Social Care Team Leader Rob Hahn
Who knew there would be a day dedicated to the geeks around the world! I will go out on a limb and say, I personally only fall into the avgeek category (although others may disagree!). One cool thing about being an avgeek is that there is so much to geek about! One of my favorite things is all of the collectables you can acquire when working for an airline. In my 12 years working for Southwest Airlines, I’ve acquired a set of airplane seats, a few hundred t-shirts, multiple posters, a bobble head of our CEO, buttons … the list goes on and on.
The problem is finding a place to store it all, because, naturally, you can’t get rid of any of it. I have to admit, even before working for this great airline, I collected aviation treasures (or junk according to others) such as magazines, aircraft models, those good ole paper-printed flight schedules, and of course, airplane wings! Airline collectables are such a hit with avgeeks—there are conventions held across the country where all of the aforementioned collectibles are traded and sold. So, to all of the avgeeks out there—keep on collecting!
Communication Senior Specialist Richard West
Southwest Boeing 717 Model
As our Company’s resident Historian, I have the privilege of acting on my inner avgeek tendencies on a daily basis. One of my favorite topics is our aircraft fleet, both currently and past. There is always speculation among the avgeek community as to what our future fleet may look like, and there was a time in our recent history we anticipated adding a second aircraft, the Boeing 717, to the Southwest family early on in the AirTran integration process. At the same time, we were also acquiring aircraft models to be displayed in our Heart of our History exhibit at the Frontiers of Flight Museum. Along with a TranStar DC-9 and Southwest 727, a 1:20 717 in full Southwest livery was also commissioned to be incorporated into the growing exhibit.
However, shortly before the extremely detailed model arrived, the decision was made for the 717s to continue their service elsewhere in the airline world, so the new model was now unnecessary. Although our Southwest 717 model only reflects a concept for what could have been, it’s quite the conversation starter among my fellow avgeeks who see it proudly “flying” above my desk!
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I like to picnic every chance I get—which mostly depends on the Texas weather. If it’s not raining or at 150 percent humidity level, a few Fellow Interns and I take our lunch breaks on the Headquarters’ “deck” for some good ole’ plane watching and sunshine. And, we’re not the only ones! Southwest is extremely familiar with picnicking, as it incorporates two of our favorite things: community and connecting people.
Specifically, through our Heart of the Community program, Southwest focuses on community in public spaces, encouraging connections, gatherings and, of course, picnicking! The Heart of the Community program revolves around Placemaking, a movement to improve and revitalize public spaces based around the needs of the community. Since July is National Picnic Month, and we LUV encouraging People to connect and explore, here’s a list of our top ten destinations for picnics!
Whether you’re looking for a traditional red-checkered blanket picnic spot or something more unique, you’ll surely find something perfect for you on this list. You’ll even find some Southwest Placemaking and Southwest Porch locations too! Do you have a personal favorite? Then share it on Twitter or Facebook using #PlacesWeLUV.
Klyde Warren Park, Dallas, TX: Picnic where the LUV airline began by visiting the Southwest Porch in Klyde Warren Park, deep in the heart of Dallas.
Crissy Field, San Francisco, CA: For a great view of the Golden Gate Bridge and passing ferries and sailboats, picnic at Crissy Field by the San Fran bay.
Burnside Park, Providence, RI: Take the kids with you, and picnic at the newly refreshed Burnside Park, a Southwest Placemaking project location.
Bryant Park, New York City, NY: Need a break from shopping and site-seeing? Stop by the Southwest Porch in Bryant Park.
Travis Park, San Antonio, TX: Checkout some activities from the kiosk or play a game of giant chess while picnicking at Travis Park, another Southwest Placemaking project location.
Kerry Park, Seattle, WA: For a wonderful view of the Seattle skyline, picnic at on a Kerry Park bench overlooking the city.
Echo Lake Park, Denver CO: Craving some lake side leisure and mountain views? Visit Echo Lake Park—be sure to bring a picnic.
Campus Martius Park, Detroit, MI: Put your toes in the sand at Campus Martius Park, a Southwest Placemaking location that brings the beach to downtown Detroit.
Museum Campus and Grant Park, Chicago, IL: Ready for a spectacular view of Chicago? Find some green space lakeside at Museum Campus and Grant Park.
Piedmont Park, Atlanta, GA: Check out the Southwest Porch at Park Tavern in Piedmont Park for a view of the Atlanta skyline and a quick picnic.
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It’s summertime, so we should get outside and take advantage of the warm weather and sun rays! Spend the day at a local park and—if you happen to be in Atlanta, Dallas, or New York City—swing by a Southwest Porch! Each of our Porches offer comfortable seating and FUN perks, nesting in a local park, ready for you and friends and family to enjoy.
Park Tavern, Atlanta, GA: Located in Piedmont Park on 10th Street NE, this Southwest Porch showcases an amazing view of the Atlanta skyline and offers seasonally inspired food and drinks. The Porch is open Monday through Friday from 4:30 p.m. to midnight on weekdays and 11:30 a.m. to midnight on weekends.
Klyde Warren Park, Dallas, TX: Located at Klyde Warren Park off Olive Street in downtown Dallas, this Southwest Porch offers a wonderful view of the Dallas skyline and free WiFi! Lunch and dinner from Relish food stand is also available. The Porch is open from 6:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. daily.
Bryant Park, New York City, NY: Located in the southwest corner of Bryant Park near the New York Public Library, this Porch offers a great getaway from the never-sleeping New York lifestyle! Plug in your chargeable device in one of the many power outlets and enjoy the free WiFi. Snacks are available from ‘wichcraft, and the Porch is open daily from 11:30 a.m. until midnight on weekdays and 11:00 p.m. on weekends.
Enjoy a break, a conversation with friends or an afternoon snack at one of our Porches this summer and experience some Southwest LUV on the ground level!
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Today at Southwest Airlines, we’re celebrating our 43rd birthday, and we couldn’t be more excited! This milestone marks another year of bringing our Customers the highest quality of Service, delivered with lots of LUV! Over the years, we’ve adapted to the ever-changing airline industry and stayed true to our Company Spirit, conquering numerous fare wars and, of course, the Wright Amendment. From our legendary vintage Flight Attendant hot pants to our famous peanuts, we've gathered 43 things that symbolize Southwest.
1. SkyMall Magazine
2. 1984 T.J. LUV Lunchbox
3. Flight Safety Card
4. Inflight Menu
5. Printed Boarding Pass
6. Life Jacket
7. Uniform Long-sleeved Button Down
8. Captain’s Hat
9. 2014 Freddie Award
10. Deja Blue Can
11. Oxygen Mask
12. Inflight Necktie
13. Herb’s Book: NUTS! Southwest Airlines’ Crazy Recipe for Business and Personal Success
14. Safety Vest
15. LIFT Coffee Cup
16. Open Ended Mechanic’s Wrench
17. Marshalling Wands
18. Desert Gold Duck
19. Canyon Blue Duck
20. One LUV Duck
21. Inflight Apron
22. Paper Baggage ID Tag
23. Smilie Face Cupcake
24. Plastic Baggage ID Tag
25. Logistics Cargo Award
26. Hearing Bands
27. Customer Support and Services and Customer Relations Headset
28. First Officer Epaulets
29. Vintage Flight Attendant Hot Pants
30. Southwest Pretzels
31. Southwest Peanuts
32. Onboard Coffee Creamer
33. One LUV Coin
34. Inflight Scarf
35. Spirit One 737-700 model
36. Vintage Plastic Boarding Passes
37. SPIRIT Inflight Magazine
38. Wild Turkey Whiskey
39. U.S. Passport
40. Southwest Drink Tray
41. Seatbelt Extension
42. San Antonio Cargo Sticker
43. Liberty Blue Uniform Workshirt
What do you think represents Southwest Airlines and our Company Spirit? Share your ideas in the comments below!
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Just like any living organism, airports grow and adapt to fluxes in weather, number of travelers, and, of course, security levels. Airport security procedures have changed dramatically since Southwest’s first flight, and they’ll continue to adapt as technology advances with innovations for safer, easier, and more thorough screening. To make traveling as stress-free as possible, remember these key tips when packing and preparing for a Transportation Security Administration (TSA) check point.
Know what you can and cannot bring: What you can pack in your checked bag is different than what you can pack in your carryon. Any liquids that are larger than 3.4 ounces cannot be carried in your carryon bag and must be packed in your checked luggage. Any small liquids that you do plan to carryon must be stored in a clear, quart-sized bag. For more extensive information on specific items, check the TSA traveler and Southwest.com.
Remember that TSA screening changes: Screening procedures vary from airport to airport and can even change daily depending on TSA programs and updated technology. What you experience on one trip may vary from what you’ll get this time around, so be prepared for differences.
Be prepared for basic screening procedures: Most travelers are required to take laptops and liquids out of their carryon luggage for the x-ray machine; therefore, put them somewhere easy to reach, like the top pocket. Wear slip on shoes that you can take off and put on quickly, and remove jackets before getting up to the scanners—they have to be screened too. Also, have your appropriate ID and documents ready to go! You may hold onto these through screening if you feel uncomfortable leaving them in a bin, and at some airports a TSO will check your documents after you yourself have been screened. It’s always a good idea to pay attention to those screened before you, as well. It’s an easy way to see what you’ll need to do (or not do).
Maintain a good attitude: Going through security takes time and patience, two things most travelers don’t have in surplus. Remember, it’s a tedious process that everyone must undergo, so simply make the most of it. Keep in mind your destination, and let that set the tone—security merely brings you one step closer to whatever is waiting for you when you land. If you have a fun, laid-back attitude about it, you’ll find the process goes by quickly.
Take advantage of available options: Southwest offers Business Select Customers and Rapid Rewards A-List Members a Fly By Priority Lane, which gives you priority at the ticket counter, as well as access to faster security lines in some cities. Also, as the TSA shifts their methodology to more risk-based screening, they have made TSA PreCheck available in many airports. TSA PreCheck allows Customers, who have applied or opted in to the program, to go through security checkpoints in a more efficient, separate PreCheck lane.
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In 2013, Southwest Airlines hosted more than 11 million Customers in the air per month. While some were traveling for business, others were traveling for leisure—remember a vacation is good for your brain! If you can manage, use the summer months to explore the many cities Southwest can take you to, and enjoy some time unwinding or searching for adventure. Pick a couple of things off this to-do list (or try them all!) for an ultimate summer travel experience.
Collect seashells from a beautiful beach (Visit West Palm Beach, FL)
The classic (and most obvious) way to celebrate summer starts with visiting a beach. Whether it’s time to get your tan on or time to practice your sandcastle-building skills, spend at least a day getting some Vitamin C and sand between your toes.
Climb a mountain (Visit Denver, CO)
With strong-soled shoes and a good hiking stick, make the trek up one of Colorado’s mountains in Rocky Mountain National Park.
Explore a famous zoo (Visit Kansas City, MO)
The Kansas City Zoo plays host to over 1,200 exotic species, making it a good place to be for those already and soon-to-be animal lovers.
Shop at one of the largest malls in America (Visit Minneapolis, MN)
Prepare to be wowed at the Mall of America. With more than four million square feet of mall area, you’re sure to find that perfect something (or somethings) you’ve been looking for. The mall is also home to a number of non-shopping related attractions.
Rent a house boat on a scenic lake (Visit Little Rock, AR)
A short drive outside Little Rock’s city limits, Lake Ouachita is one of Arkansas’ most beautiful lakes due to its clear waters and rock bottom. Staying on a house boat is an adventure everyone should try! Why just visit nature when you could float in it?
Get lost in waterfall mist (Visit Buffalo, NY)
Of all the wonderful waterfalls that fall (pun intended) in the U.S. borders, the American Falls (part of the Niagara Falls trio of waterfalls) is one of the most exciting. Catch the view from the Niagara Falls Observation Tower or brave the mist by climbing down the stairs to the Crow’s Nest.
Experience an original, iconic location (Visit Seattle, WA)
Whether you’re into architecture, seafood, or coffee, Seattle has an icon for you! Check out the view from the Space Needle and sip a mocha latte from the original Starbucks coffee shop. Also, don’t forget to see the famous flying fish at the Pike Place Market.
Visit a hometown treasure off the beaten path (Visit Spokane, WA)
When you think wine, you may think Napa Valley, but think again! Home to great wine growing conditions, Spokane is full of local wineries with quaint charm ready to host your taste buds.
Check out some interesting architecture (Visit New York, NY)
New York City not only has the memorable Empire State building, but tons of additional stacked brick and shaped metal buildings waiting to be seen. For architecture enthusiasts or for the newbies, NYC is a great place to explore.
Snap a photo next to a larger-than-life monument (Visit Washington D.C.)
Take a photo with some of the most famous sites in the United States, including the Lincoln Memorial and the Jefferson Memorial. If the statue isn’t larger-than-life, its meaning sure is!
Relive history (Visit Houston, TX)
As the largest city in Texas, Houston offers a diverse list of activities. Visit Space Center Houston to learn more about space travel—don’t forget to say, “Houston, we have a problem.” And visit Galveston, Texas, a short drive south, to learn about the power of hurricanes and the Great Galveston Hurricane of 1900.
Search a unique museum (Visit San Diego, CA)
Balboa Park in San Diego is home to 15 museums, a zoo, and much more. Spend the weekend exploring the park grounds and gardens, and don’t forget to take an afternoon to explore an intriguing museum.
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