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Southwest Airlines announces flight credits will no longer expire

Southwest Airlines announced that flight credits issued beginning on Thursday will no longer expire. File Photo by Larry W. Smith/EPA-EFE
Southwest Airlines announced that flight credits issued beginning on Thursday will no longer expire. File Photo by Larry W. Smith/EPA-EFE

July 28 (UPI) -- Southwest Airlines announced Thursday that flight credits provided when travelers need to cancel their flights will no longer expire.

The policy will apply to all flight credits "unexpired on, or created on or after July 28, 2022," Southwest said in a statement, adding that customers are not required to take any action to benefit from the change.

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"Flight credits don't expire aligns with the boldness of a philosophy to give our customers definitive ease in travel just like 'Bags fly free,' just like 'No change fees,' just like 'Points don't expire' -- they're a first-in-our-industry combination of differentiators that only Southwest offers," Southwest CEO Bob Jordan said.

Under the airline's previous policy, flight credits, which are issued in some cases when travelers are forced to cancel a nonrefundable flight ticket, had to be used or scheduled for use on travel within one year of the date the original tickets were purchased.

Tickets with an expiration date on or before July 27 will still be considered expired under the new policy.

Beginning Thursday, Southwest said customers will begin seeing a placeholder expiration date of Dec. 31, 2040.

The airline's systems will then be updated later this year to remove expiration dates completely.

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