Did you know there may be a way you can automatically check yourself in on a Southwest flight online without having to agonize (me!) about remembering to check in exactly 24 hours ahead of your flight’s departure time in order to get the best boarding order?

Southwest Plane Interior Credit Southwest Airlines

Shhh… here’s a secret way that may help you automatically check in online on Southwest! Credit: Southwest Airlines

I recently came across The Art of Travel Hacking blog, whose writer offers a small bit of code you can install in your browser that will automatically check you in!!

Once you have added the script following his steps here, you will go to Southwest.com, click on Check In before the 24-hour mark of your flight but no more than two weeks beforehand. You’ll try to check in and then you’ll see a pop up that prompts you to enter the check-in date and time you’d like, the phone number you want your boarding pass texted to, and then click on Auto Check in.

He also notes to make sure your computer’s clock is accurate, make adjustments for time zones in your departing and arrival destinations, and you may need to keep your computer from “falling asleep.”

He says it does not work for international flights. Also, apparently Southwest made an adjustment to their online check in (probably when they updated their software in May 2017) and as a result, he updated the code to ensure it works.

Big caveat here: I HAVE NOT TRIED THIS. But I think it sounds like such a good idea I wanted to share it with you.

Here is one reader’s review:

I tried the Chrome extension to check in to Southwest. I followed the steps, and it seemed to set up correctly. I put 2 seconds beyond my check-in time as recommended. I also was right by my laptop in case of any glitches. Well, it didn’t work. At the time, it said that it was checking in, but “the wheel kept spinning” so I just manually checked in. Possibly even the 2 seconds was not enough time, and I should have put 5 seconds. 
Maybe I would try the extension again, but only if I was with my laptop to manually do it in case of any problems. And I would extend the time by 5 seconds instead of 2.

We don’t currently have any flights coming up soon on which to try this, but DO let me know if you try it and if it works.

Cool beans!

More tips on Southwest check-in.

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