View Full Version : Southwest and Group Travel

04-01-2008, 07:50 AM
When purchasing tickets through the group dept you get paper tickets. Therefore checking in online is not possible. Is there a way to get past this that I am missing?

SWA suggests taking the tickets to the airport the day before.....not possible as we are in Canada, 2hrs from the BUF airport and on the return the day before we will be on a ship! There will be about 40 people.

Has anyone found a creative way to book a group with SWA? The schedule isn't out yet for the time we are travelling, but it appears it will be the best as far as schedule and price.

04-01-2008, 11:20 AM
I have only booked for 5 people. However I did have a situation where the flight dropped to 49 but only for 3 people. So now I have 2 reservation numbers. I will confirm both 24 hours in advance

When you think about it what is the benefit of booking a group together and getting a C boarding pass which may leave 1 person here and another there. Find a way to group your people to meet the maximum number able to book online. You may have 5 confirmation numbers but oh well. Then what I would do is have other help you or open more than one internet session during check in. And type in the confirmation numbers. Then at 24 hour mark start hitting submit button. If it is too soon hit the back button and keep doing that. If you have help from others that woudl be great as well.
In teh end all A,s board in group 1-20 etc. 21-30. Odds are if you do it fast enough you will all be able to sit around each other if not together. Removes the anxiety of wondering where to sit as a C

On the ship . I get web service added to cell phone. SW allows you do check in via phone. You don't need the paper ticket to go to the airport . They will print it when you check your bags. If you can't get good service . Use the internet cafes.

Overall doing the group booking with paper and no precheckin will be a hassle.

04-01-2008, 12:20 PM
Your suggestion is my back up plan! The issue when booking them all online is no guarantee of prices. I need to have a firm cost prior to booking due to the nature of my group.

Does anyone know if I book by phone is it still a paper ticket? I know the price may be a bit higher but I am thinking I may get a more accurate idea of price that way.

04-01-2008, 06:44 PM
When a group from our high school flew SW this spring they received paper tickets. There boarding passes were included in the papers. There was no need to check in at the 24 hour mark. Some members of the group were in the B boarding group, others in the C group. The students did not have problems finding seats next to someone from their group. They lined up at both airports in the appropriate line and boarded. They went to the back of the plane and were able to get seats next to each other.
Hope this helps.

04-03-2008, 08:09 AM
I understand your price dilemma. But let me ask you this. If you book everyone on 1 credit card and the prices go down you get credit. With a paper ticket is that not the case. I will tell you I am going to fort Lauderdale and I bought at 89 dollars. That was a steal for mothers day weeked. SO far I have gotten 400 dollars in credits for th 5 of us.

if you book now you may get about 99 dollars depending where you are from. So that is still not bad. Then if the price goes down you can sell the credits on ebay (so I am told) or go on another trip.

Good Luck

04-03-2008, 08:38 AM
Group fares generally have better payment terms then conventional tickets. Group fares generally let the group substitute passengers. Group fares give every passenger in the group the same fare.

There is almost no chance of getting great, low bucket, fares for 40 passengers on one flight. Some groups would prefer to get lower fares, will split up over several flights and will book conventionally. Some groups need the better payment terms, and the ability to substitute passengers.

Sometimes the GA/FA will just reserve a block of seats, near the back of the plane, for a large group.