Why You should ONLY fly Southwest Airlines

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It's always fun to plan summer travel, isn't it?  For me, one big trip and a few smaller getaways are the perfect balance for a fun summer.  I usually plan out the big trip in great detail months ahead of time, but for the smaller getaways, I normally just keep tabs on airfare deals and go with the flow. Are you the same way?

If so, I definitely recommend Southwest Airlines.  In a nutshell, they'll help you save money during the most expensive travel times throughout the year (probably the biggest perk), the flights are typically on schedule, and the snacks are great.

Think you might give Southwest a shot?  Here are some ways I've saved money using Southwest that may help you with your next trip.

1. Book on their website

By booking directly on Southwest's website, you'll get the best deals and lowest prices on airfare.  Even if the fares appear cheaper on other websites, they usually tack on additional fees right at the very end that'll push it over the price you'd pay by booking directly.

Pretty intuitive, but worth mentioning.  

2. Find out which airport is cheaper to fly from

I have a few airports near me and often wonder which one is a better deal for me to fly in and out of when traveling.  

With Southwest's website, I can easily compare which one has the best deal and most convenient flights.  They even let me book roundtrip tickets to and from different airports (which sometimes lowers the airfare)!

3. Southwest is the champion of special offers and last-minute deals

What initially drew me to Southwest were all the specials and promotions I saw online like this one:

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A lot of airlines don't really run special travel deals anymore but Southwest is pretty much the opposite of that; they'll always running amazing promotions throughout the year, and since they have so many hubs around the country, visiting pretty much anywhere is a breeze.

4. Checking a bag for free still exists! (on Southwest)

It's kind of a bummer that most airlines charge extra for checking a bag these days, but again, Southwest is different.  

They allow up to two bags with no additional fee, which could potentially save you $200 roundtrip!  I must admit that I really hate checking bags in general, but if I happen to buy a lot of stuff on a trip and want to bring it back with me, I know I won't have to pay additional fees. 

5. They'll reward you for dining out

I don't know about you, but I'm really good at eating (especially while traveling!).  

With Southwest, I can eat at restaurants that are part of their Rapid Rewards Dining program and earn points on my next flight.  I seriously can't over emphasize how much I love this perk.

6. Their price match policy is awesome

If the price of the flight changes after you've booked your trip, you can rebook your flight(s) and receive a refund in the form of credit towards another flight.  This alone has saved me a couple hundred dollars, which over time, is like a completely free trip (depending on the destination, of course).

7. Rapid Rewards

Southwest's Rapid Rewards program isn't just for eating at certain restaurants.  You can also earn points at participating hotels, events, parks, stores, and others places.  After my trip is booked, I always do a quick search to see what other points I can earn at my destination.

8. In-flight couponing

I never really thought that anyone read the in-flight magazines on planes (RIP SkyMall), but Southwest's is definitely worth looking through for the coupons!  Seriously.  They've done a great job of securing coupons and deals for restaurants, attractions, and even parking garages.

Your turn: do you fly with Southwest? Let me know in the comments!

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