Checked Baggage


Screening and Identification

Checked baggage will be screened and is subject to physical inspection as mandated by the TSA. Customers may be required to present identification. We recommend placing identification both on the inside and outside of the baggage. Name labels are available at Southwest Airlines ticket counters. Once you've checked your luggage, make sure you receive a separate claim check for each piece of baggage you've checked. Check to make sure that the city shown on the claim check(s) matches your final destination.

Southwest Airlines currently prohibits self-defense sprays on any flight regardless if it is checked or carried on.

Please see the TSA's web site for a list of prohibited items.

Baggage Allowance

Southwest allows two (2) checked pieces of baggage per ticketed Customer. Size and weight limitations apply.

Excess Baggage

Each piece of baggage in excess of the free baggage allowance specified above that is not in excess of 62 inches (L+W+H) and 50 lbs. or less will be accepted for a charge of $75.00 per item one-way. Excess baggage which is also overweight or oversized will be charged excess baggage plus the applicable oversize or overweight charge.

Weight and Size Allowance

Southwest will accept the first two checked bags for free provided that the bags do not exceed 50 lbs and 62 inches (L+W+H). Overweight items from 51 to 100 pounds and oversized items in excess of 62 inches but not more than 80 inches will be accepted for a charge of $75.00 per item one-way. Only one $75.00 charge applies if the piece is both oversized and overweight, regardless of the weight as long as it does not exceed 100 lbs.  Excess baggage which is also overweight or oversized will be charged excess baggage plus the applicable oversize or overweight charge.

Any item weighing more than 100 pounds must be shipped as Air Cargo. However, Customers cannot use SWA Cargo unless classified as a Known Shipper as defined by the TSA or TSA approved Indirect Air Carriers (IAC). For full details about shipping cargo, visit

Exception:  Military Passengers traveling on active duty or permanent change of station orders will be exempt from the two-piece Baggage limit and will not be subject to excess, oversize, or overweight Baggage charges, provided that none of the pieces of Baggage exceeds 100 pounds in weight and 80 inches in size (L+W+H).


Domestic itineraries: Southwest Airlines' liability in the case of lost, damaged, or delayed baggage is limited to $3,800.00 per fare-paying Customer.

International itineraries: Southwest Airlines’ liability in the case of destruction, lost, damage, or delay of baggage, whether checked or unchecked, is limited to 1,288 Special Drawing Rights for each passenger under the Montreal Convention or the Warsaw Convention, whichever may apply.

Lithium batteries, e-cigarettes, and lighters

Passengers are allowed to travel with up to 20 spare batteries at a time. This includes portable chargers and external battery chargers for mobile phones, tablets, and laptops. Portable charges and spare batteries must be packed in your carryon bag or be with you onboard.

Because e-cigarettes are designed to operate by creating heat, they must be placed in a carryon bag or be with you onboard. A friendly reminder, e-cigarettes cannot be used onboard our aircraft.

Passengers are also allowed to travel with one lighter, which must be in your carryon or with you onboard.

See Southwest Airlines Contract of Carriage for details and limitations.


We're sorry about your baggage—we're here to help. Let us know within four hours of arriving at your destination that your luggage is lost, delayed, or damaged. Please make a report in person to the Southwest Airlines Baggage Service Office (located in the baggage claim area or at the ticket counter). Or, if you've already left the airport, call 1-855-234-4654.

Click here to view the status of your baggage incident.

Limited Release

Improperly packed and/or fragile items will be accepted subject to limited release and Southwest will not be responsible for any damage to items that are accepted with Limited Release.

Please see important information regarding checking assistive devices.

Late Check-In

When checking baggage, allow sufficient time for it to be placed on your flight. Baggage checked in 45 minutes or less before the scheduled or posted departure time (whichever is later) is considered “Late Check”

Although every effort will be made to get late checked baggage on your flight, in the event your baggage does not arrive with you at your destination, Southwest will not assume delivery charges to get your baggage to you.

International Travel

If any portion of your itinerary contains an international flight and you plan to check luggage, you will be required to do so at the Southwest Airlines Ticket Counter upon arrival at the airport. You cannot check in or check luggage at the curbside if traveling on an international itinerary. For flights departing Aruba, the minimum check-in time for Passengers (with or without checked baggage) is at least 75 minutes before scheduled departure. For all other international flights, passengers and their baggage must be checked in 60 minutes prior to the scheduled departure. Passengers who do not meet this check in time will not be permitted to check-in or board the flight. Connecting passengers must claim all luggage, regardless of final destination, upon arrival in the U.S. After clearing Customs, connecting passengers will then be required to re-check all checked luggage with a Southwest Airlines Customer Service Agent before proceeding to connecting flight(s).



Please make sure that any sharp objects (especially needles, syringes, and other items needed for medication) are properly covered and secured to prevent injury to yourself and our Employees who care for your bags.