Southwest Airtran Integration - Master Thread

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As Airtran integration with Southwest accelerates toward completion by the end of 2014 It was suggested that a Sticky Thread be initiated to combine all of the information available. This is that thread. The information here is believed accurate but may change at any time.

Please post any corrections or other information you may have.

A+ Rewards Rapid Rewards Integration.

Southwest has stated the Rapid Rewards will be the Frequent Flyer Program for the combined airline. How that will be accomplished has not been announced.

Southwest has apparently begun informing new and renewed Airtran A+ Rewards Elite Members that the programs will be merged at the end of 2014 and that their Status as A_list on Southwest will be extended through 2015. UPDATE: 3/5/2014

A+ Reward Rapid Rewards Conversion

Southwest have created a conversion program that allows A+ Rewards Credits to be transferred to Rapid Rewards Credits and allows allows Rapid Rewards points, credits or Standard Awards to be transfered to A+ Rewards Credits.
  • 1 A+ Credit transfers to 1 Rapid Rewards Credit
  • 1 Rapid Rewards Credit transfers to 1 A+ Credit.
  • 1200 Rapid Rewards Points transfer to 1 A+ Credit
  • 16 Rapid Rewards Credits create 1 Standard Award (2 flights)
  • 1 Rapid Rewards Flight transfers to 8 A+ Credits.
Use of Vouchers and Credits on Southwest and Airtran

At present Southwest Vouchers and Credits can only be used on Southwest.com for flights booked on Southwest. Airtan Vouchers and Credits can only be used on Airtran.

However some people have reported that Airtran will sometimes convert free upgrades or flight vouchers to A+ Credits which can be transferred to Southwest. As more and more flights are transitioned to Southwest opportunities to use Airtran Vouchers will decrease.

UPDATE 3/5/2014: This seems to becoming more of a policy, Airtran recently readliy agreed to convert a voucher I had been issued to 16 A+ Credits. Incidently this reset the expiation date.

UPDATE 3/5/2014: I have been advised that Airtran Customer Service may sometimes, if asked nicely, be convinced to convert Airtran Dollar value vouchers to Southwest dollar value vouchers.

[UPDATE 8/6/2014:[/B] Recent reports indicate that Airtran will convert Vouchers but the process takes between 7 and 30 days. The voucher is unavailable for use during that time. I don't know if any Airtran Vouchers have expiration dates beyond November 1, but as far as I know there has been no announcement of how those may be handled.

The Southwest Airtran 2 Step.

Because new Rapid Rewards Standard Awards expire one year after creation it is possible to extend Standard Awards indefinitely by transferring 16 A+ Credits to Rapid Rewards creating a new Standard Award. If that Award nears expiration then transferring the Standard Award to A+ Credits and Back with create an New Standard Award with a new expiration date.

This process takes 16 A+ Credits and will probably be discontinued sometime in the future.

Status Match between A+ Rewards and Rapid Rewards.

Southwest will generally match status between A+ Rewards and Rapid Rewards. All that is necessary is to establish an account in both Airtran and Southwest then call Customer Service with the account information. Airtran A+ Elite will be given A-List status on Southwest. Rapid Rewards A-List and A-List preferred with be give Airtran A+ Elite Status. As far as we can tell there is no automatic upgrade so if your status match is expiring. It is necessary for you to contact the appropriate airline and let them know it needs to be renewed.

While we have email confirmation of the policy and many people have reported success we also have a few reports of people being denied. If you are denied politely hang up and call back later or send and email. I recommend calling the Airtran Elite number, rather than Southwest or the regular Airtran number.

UPDATE! 7/22/14 Today a member has reported in the Southwest Forum that the Airtran Elite Desk is no longer doing Status matches.

Upgrade to Airtran Biz

I have had been advised that passengers traveling on tickets issued by Southwest who are A-List and Elite are eligible for complementary upgrades to business class on Flights operated by Airtran if space is available. These upgrades are only available 40 minutes before departure at the gate. While this has worked for me several time recently my wife was denied an upgrade. One Customer Service Agent at Southwest confirmed she was eligible another denied it. Another time the Southwest Gate Agent could not figure out how to change the seat assignment.

Southwest is not apparently not giving upgrades without a fight. I have experienced problems at least 3 times and received a report from another forum member of several denials.


UPDATE 3/5/2014: Recently I have been advised by several people at Southwest and Airtran that Southwest is not giving Biz upgrades to A-list passengers traveling on Southwest issued tickets. One Airtran Elite Customer Service Agent acknowledged that they had originally been told upgrades were to be given. The current story is that the original information was in error and there are "Technical Issues" with changing a Ticket issued by Southwest.

Seat Assignments on Airtran Flights Purchased Through Southwest

Recently Southwest added the capability for passengers purchasing seats on Airtran flights Purchased at Southwest.com to select seats. This new change was as far as we can tell completely unannounced it simply appeared one day. There have been reports of some problems with it, specifically that at least sometime passengers purchasing Priority Seating are not boarded in Zone 1 as advertized.

Biz Class Snacks Discontinued.

Starting Jan. 18 the business class snacks have been discontinued. The new snacks are the SWA Select-a-Snack Boxes. Consisting if Oreos, Ritz Cheese Bits and Lorna Doone shortbread cookies. Snacks will rotate every few months. This will be for all flights. Reported by CitrusFA

Drink Coupons Interchangeable UPDATED: 3/5/2014

Although never announced back in September of 2013 Southwest and Airtran began accepting each others Free Drink Coupons, according to Airtran Elite Customer Service.

Everyday is a New Day

One thing that is apparent through this process is that not everyone gets all of the memos. People are seeing glitches all the time especially when Southwest and Airtran systems need to interface. New changes are constantly surfacing.

Please Help Keep Everyone Informed

Southwest has not been actively in informing people of changes. Sometimes things just happen so we need everyone's help in keeping all of us informed.
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Old Jan 21, 14, 2:03 pm
  #1  
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Arrow Southwest Airtran Integration - Master Thread

As Airtran integration with Southwest accelerates toward completion by the end of 2014 It was suggested that a Sticky Thread be initiated to combine all of the information available. This is a draft of that thread. The information here is believed accurate but may change at any time.

Please post any correction or other information you may have.

A+ Rewards Rapid Rewards Integration.

Southwest has stated the Rapid Rewards will be the Frequent Flyer Program for the combined airline. How that will be accomplished has not been announced.

A+ Reward Rapid Rewards Conversion

Southwest have created a conversion program that allows A+ Rewards Credits to be transferred to Rapid Rewards Credits and allows allows Rapid Rewards points, credits or Standard Awards to be transfered to A+ Rewards Credits.
  • 1 A+ Credit transfers to 1 Rapid Rewards Credit
  • 1 Rapid rewards Credit transfers to 1 A+ Credit.
  • 1200 Rapid Rewards Points transfers to 1 A+ Credit
  • 16 Rapid Rewards Credits create 1 Standard Award ( 2 flights)
  • 1 Rapid Rewards Flight transfers to 8 A+ Credits.

The Southwest Airtran 2 Step.

Because new Rapid Rewards Standard Awards expire one year after creation it is possible to extend Standard Awards indefinitely by transferring 16 A+ Credits to Rapid Rewards creating a new Standard Award. If that Award nears expiration then transferring the Standard Award to A+ Credits and Back with create an New Standard Award with a new expiration date.

This process takes 16 A+ Credits and will probably be discontinued sometime in the future.

Status Match between A+ Rewards and Rapid Rewards.

Southwest will match status between A+ Rewards and Rapid Rewards. All that is necessary is to establish an account in both Airtran and Southwest then call Customer Service with the account information. Airtran A+ Elite will be given A-List status on Southwest. Rapid Rewards A-List and A-List preferred with be give Airtran A+ Elite Status. As far as we can tell there is no automatic upgrade so if your status match is expiring. It is necessary for you to contact the appropriate airline and let them know it needs to be renewed.

Upgrade to Airtran Biz

I have been advised that passengers traveling on tickets issued by Southwest who are A-List and Elite are eligible to complementary upgrades to business class on Flights operated by Airtran if space is available. These upgrades are only available 40 minutes before departure at the gate. While this has worked for me several time recently my wife was denied an upgrade. One Customer Service Agent at Southwest confirmed she was eligible another denied it. Another time the Southwest Gate Agent could not figure out how to change the seat assignment.

Seat Assignments on Airtran Flights Purchased Through Southwest

Recently Southwest added the capability for passengers purchasing seats on Airtran flights Purchased at Southwest.com to select seats. This new change was as far as we can tell completely unannounced it simply appeared one day. There have been reports of some problems with it, specifically that at least sometime passengers purchasing Priority Seating are not boarded in Zone 1 as advertized.


Everyday is a New Day

One thing that is apparent through this process is that not everyone gets all of the memos. People are seeing glitches all the time especially when Southwest and Airtran system need to interface. New changes are constantly surfacing.

Please Help Keep Everyone Informed

Southwest has not been actively in informing people of changes. Sometimes things just happen so we need everyone's help in keeping all of us informed.
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Old Jan 22, 14, 12:05 am
  #2  
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I have experienced problems with Biz upgrades being denied for flights booked on Southwest.com for a variety of reasons.

I have now received reports confirming these problems.

The information in the Wiki is therefor now suspect. If anyone has problem please report them here.
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Old Jan 23, 14, 9:21 pm
  #3  
nsx
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rsteinmetz70112, thank you so much for creating this Wiki! FT would be nothing without hard work by people who volunteer their time here.
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Old Jan 28, 14, 7:50 pm
  #4  
 
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Modification to FL homepage

There is a slightly new look to the top of the homepage.

http://www.airtran.com/

Also, there is no longer any info or application link on the FL site for the Chase AirTran Visa; instead, the bottom of the homepage promotes the Chase Southwest Visa. However, for those still wanting to apply for FL card,

https://creditcards.chase.com/a1/air...2loyaltycorner

As of right now, the link offers two roundtrips, but it is unknown for how much longer, as the consolidation continues.

Last edited by mke9499; Jan 28, 14 at 10:08 pm
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Old Jan 28, 14, 8:49 pm
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I am expecting Chase to issue everyone with an Airtran card new Southwest Visa at some point.
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Old Jan 29, 14, 11:12 am
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Change to Status Match

Reference statement above: "Airtran A+ Elite will be given A-List status on Southwest." Please change.

Yesterday I was denied status match. Agent said can you only have status match for one year. Since I had it last year she said no.

Very poor customer service and I will fly other airlines when I cannot book on SWA. Not going to fly Air Tran as some of the international destinations are not in SWA system yet. I've got two planned in May/June. So SWA/AirTran you loose 4 round trips. Guess my travel is not important to you.
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Old Jan 29, 14, 11:27 am
  #7  
nsx
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Originally Posted by goghd View Post
Reference statement above: "Airtran A+ Elite will be given A-List status on Southwest." Please change.

Yesterday I was denied status match. Agent said can you only have status match for one year. Since I had it last year she said no.
This is very much YMMV. My advice:
1. When you first call, immediately write down the name of the person answering the phone.
2. If you are refused, be nice so the refusal is NOT documented by the agent. 3. Call back several hours later and hope to get a different agent. Write down the name and make sure it doesn't match a previous name.
4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 until you succeed.

I'm pretty sure the official policy is one match for one year, but I had no problem getting a second one after a 3-month lapse. I really want to try AirTran but I haven't needed a solo flight to the East Coast in years. I have needed to fly Southwest in order to use my Companion Pass on the one or two trips where I otherwise might have been able to choose AirTran.
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Old Jan 29, 14, 12:11 pm
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Originally Posted by goghd View Post
Reference statement above: "Airtran A+ Elite will be given A-List status on Southwest." Please change.

Yesterday I was denied status match. Agent said can you only have status match for one year. Since I had it last year she said no.

Very poor customer service and I will fly other airlines when I cannot book on SWA. Not going to fly Air Tran as some of the international destinations are not in SWA system yet. I've got two planned in May/June. So SWA/AirTran you loose 4 round trips. Guess my travel is not important to you.
Did you call Airtran or Southwest? I suggest you call the Airtran Elite number. They can do it in a few seconds.

I have been told the original policy was one match for one year but it was changed. Every year Airtran has renewed my A-List status without question for both my self and my wife.

I renewed my A-List by phone just after the first of the year. I have also recently discussed this with an Airtran CSR and even got another email response recently confirming it when I asked my wife to be upgraded to A-List + since she had more than 50 flights on Airtran last year (that request was denied).

I will edit the Wiki and indicate there may be some difficulty.
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Old Jan 29, 14, 1:17 pm
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[QUOTE=rsteinmetz70112;22247026]Did you call Airtran or Southwest? I suggest you call the Airtran Elite number. They can do it in a few seconds.

I have been told the original policy was one match for one year but it was changed. Every year Airtran has renewed my A-List status without question for both my self and my wife.

Response: I called the Aritran elite number. The 1st time they just simply said cannot do it. The second time it was the one year issue. I will try a third time. I've had the Airtran elite status for two years prior to this year and both times it was a status match. Flew 5 or 6 times buying AirTran only tickets each year. Maybe just the clerk on duty.
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Old Jan 29, 14, 2:20 pm
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Originally Posted by goghd View Post
Response: I called the Aritran elite number. The 1st time they just simply said cannot do it. The second time it was the one year issue. I will try a third time. I've had the Airtran elite status for two years prior to this year and both times it was a status match. Flew 5 or 6 times buying AirTran only tickets each year. Maybe just the clerk on duty.
Renewing Elite status requires 12 one way qualifying flights. 5 round trips would not qualify.

Last edited by rsteinmetz70112; Jan 30, 14 at 12:25 pm
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Old Jan 29, 14, 2:30 pm
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Last edited by rsteinmetz70112; Jan 30, 14 at 12:24 pm
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Old Jan 29, 14, 2:34 pm
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Old Jan 30, 14, 12:19 pm
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Originally Posted by rsteinmetz70112 View Post
I have experienced problems with Biz upgrades being denied for flights booked on Southwest.com for a variety of reasons.

I have now received reports confirming these problems.

The information in the Wiki is therefor now suspect. If anyone has problem please report them here.
Definitely had an issue with this the one time I booked through southwest.com and flew on Airtran (had a SW gift certificate to use up). They had 4-5 seats open in biz, so luckily the gate agent was really nice and tried for about 15 minutes (no joke!) trying to get it to work, to no avail.

Eventually she just wrote a new seat on my boarding pass, which was great, but I certainly was listed as my old seat in coach, since she could not get an actual upgrade to work.
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Old Jan 30, 14, 1:15 pm
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Originally Posted by pykerl View Post
Definitely had an issue with this the one time I booked through southwest.com and flew on Airtran (had a SW gift certificate to use up). They had 4-5 seats open in biz, so luckily the gate agent was really nice and tried for about 15 minutes (no joke!) trying to get it to work, to no avail.

Eventually she just wrote a new seat on my boarding pass, which was great, but I certainly was listed as my old seat in coach, since she could not get an actual upgrade to work.
Thank you for your report.
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Old Feb 4, 14, 8:20 am
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Trying to get my Airtran Elite status transferred to my SWA Rapid Rewards account: I called SWA Rapid Rewards Customer Service, and after 10 minutes on hold, they are not sure how to do it. After that, I called the Airtran Elite desk. She took both the Airtran and SWA accounts for my both my wife and me. She said the gal who did it was on break and to wait 30 minutes.

So, echoing another reply, this is definitely easier if you call Airtran.
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