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Southwest Airlines Gives “Customers Of Size” Free Extra Seat

Southwest Airlines has an unpublicized policy of allowing “customers of size” to get an extra seat, free of charge. If a person cannot fit in a seat without their body going beyond the bounds of the armrests, they can purchase an extra seat for themselves during the booking process. After their flight is complete, they can request a refund for the extra seat they purchased, effectively making the seat complimentary. The policy is most likely not publicized due to the obvious nature of people to try and scam the system. It is not known what Southwest Airlines does to verify a person’s size or if any verification is done at all.

Social media users exposed the little-known rule in a flurry of videos. And, of course, there are a lot of questions about other people who may need special accommodations. Tall people are often forced to purchase more expensive seating for the added legroom. Others may fly with pets that they may want to keep on the seat instead of in a bag or on the ground. Some people have mental health concerns and the extra seat next to them may be necessary for mental clarity. Then, of course, there is the issue of the extra baggage fees for bags that are too big and/or weigh too much. Southwest may be forced to rescind the exception due to the can of worms it has obviously opened.

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