Southwest Airines To Offer Free In-flight Moves In Prep For Hawaii Flights

Southwest currently offers paid in-flight entertainment. That currently sets passengers back $5 for the flight. However, Southwest doesn’t even have screens built into the aircraft. Passengers are instead required to load up the Southwest app on the aircraft’s wifi. This allows devices to stream a set number of files saved to a hard drive on the aircraft. Now, in preparation for its long Hawaii services next year, Southwest is to begin offering free movies. This move will certainly come as a welcome bonus to any passengers trying to pass the long duration.

Southwest is to begin offering free movies onboard WiFi-equipped aircraft.

Southwest Hawaii Services

Southwest has previously announced the intention to launch new routes to Hawaii. It was originally expected that services would have commenced by now, however, the FAA is still to grant final authorisation. Now it looks as though the flights from the west coast are due to begin sometime in 2019. Southwest will be operating about 15 Hawaii flights a day at the route’s peak. With the flights to Hawaii set to take over 4 hours, Passengers should have ample time to watch a couple of films before arriving at their destination.

Southwest Airlines’ Vice President and Cheif Marketing Officer, Ryan Green, believes the move will help drive passenger loyalty with the airline. He told a Southwest press release: “The onboard experience is one of the most important elements of a Customer’s journey with us. Our research shows that a positive experience onboard the aircraft can greatly influence the decision to come back to Southwest. We listened to our Customers and are enhancing our already award-winning experience.”

Southwest Airlines
Southwest Airlines recently began offering free in-flight messaging on WiFi-equipped aircraft. Photo: Southwest Airlines

Let’s talk about points: 

If you want to go to Hawaii with Southwest with points, then you are in luck. Southwest Airlines offer a few co-branded Chase credit cards. Let us tell you about a couple of them:

The cards: 

  • Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card
  • Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card

The Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card:

Southwest Airines To Offer Free In-flight Moves In Prep For Hawaii Flights

With the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card you get 40,000 points after spending $1000 within the first 3 months, you also get 3000 bonus points on your cardmember anniversary date. Earn 2 points per $1 spent on Southwest® purchases and Rapid Rewards® Hotel and Car Rental Partner purchases 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases. You can earn unlimited miles and they don’t expire as long as the card account is open. The Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card is perfect if you are an occasional Southwest flyer and the annual fee is $69.

The Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card:

Southwest Airines To Offer Free In-flight Moves In Prep For Hawaii Flights

With the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card you get 40,000 points after spending $1000 within the first 3 months, you also get 6000 bonus points on your cardmember anniversary date. Earn 2 points per $1 spent on Southwest® purchases and Rapid Rewards® Hotel and Car Rental Partner purchases 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases. You can earn unlimited miles and they don’t expire as long as the card account is open. The Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card is perfect if you are an avid Southwest flyer and the annual fee is $99.

What is the difference between the Plus and Premier Credit Card?

The annual fee between both cards has a difference of $30, however with the Premier card you get twice as man points on your card anniversary date which according to Nerd Wallet, 3000 extra points are worth around $30 per year, so this of sets the additional $30 in annual fees that the Premier card has. Furthermore, the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card has no foreign transaction fees whereas the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card charges 3% for all foreign transaction fees.

When Will Free Films Launch?

Southwest is already in the process of launching its free films offering. In fact, the airline believes that the majority of customers should have access to the service by the end of the week. Unfortunately, free films are not available for part of international flights due to licensing restrictions, however, this is not something that will affect those travelling to Hawaii.

Southwest Airlines
Passengers are advised to download the Southwest Airlines app to access movies, however, access should be available through a web browser.

The move to remove the charge for films coincides with a number of other improvements to the onboard entertainment system. The airline currently offers free music onboard flights with its partner iHeartRadio. Additionally, passengers are now able to send iMessage and Whatsapp messages for free when travelling on WiFi-equipped aircraft. They will still be able to purchase full wifi access for $8 a day should the need to update facebook arise.

When will you make use of Southwest’s free films? Will it make you more likely to choose Southwest? Let us know in the comments down below!

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