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All-New Rapid Rewards Update

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I wanted to provide you all with an update on how things are going since we launched the All-New Rapid Rewards program last week.  To say it’s been a crazy past week and a half is an understatement, and I know you all have experienced and expressed your frustrations with the launch of the new program and the challenges we have faced with the rollout. 

 

If we were a sports team, you could say that we’ve been in a slump the last week and a half.  It happens to even the best teams, and when it comes to Customer Service and meeting and exceeding our Customers’ expectations, I feel that Southwest is the best in the game.  Like a slumping sports team, we have heard all about it from our fans, which is to be expected and certainly fair.  The truth is we haven’t lived up to our standards or expectations for delivering Customer Service this past week and a half.  For that, we sincerely apologize.  I can tell you that we have been working around the clock to recover and get back to our winning ways.  We are seeing improvements, and each day is better than the one before.   

 

One of the biggest challenges we have experienced, that we know has a bigger impact on you, is our higher than normal call volumes, as well as unusually high e-mail inquiries.  Unfortunately, that has meant that your wait time to speak to someone has been longer than normal, and at times, you have been unable to get through.  Likewise, it has taken us longer to respond to your e-mails.  Fortunately, we have seen steady improvements since the launch, and we are hoping to be back to the level of Customer Service you expect from us soon.  Please trust me when I tell you that we do have all hands on deck working around the clock to answer your calls and e-mails.  Combined, our Customer Service Representatives have worked thousands of hours of overtime, and we have brought in temporary Employees to help. 

 

Additionally, as with anything new, there is a learning curve to becoming familiar with the changes on the web site, so our Members naturally have questions about where to find certain features and how to navigate the site, which can be frustrating.  We know there is opportunity for making the new account screens more intuitive so you can more easily find your information.  A few of these have already been implemented, and we continue to work on further enhancements.  Last week, we posted a blog and video with answers to some frequently asked questions about how to navigate the web site, so I encourage you to check that out if you haven’t already.

 

With regard to functionality on southwest.com, most all functionality is working as designed.  Yes, we are still experiencing a few bugs here and there, and we have only one main outstanding issue we are working diligently to address.  Members who are using Internet Explorer 6 (IE6) are unable to login to their account.  We are aware of this issue and are working to fix it as soon as we possibly can.  I’m including a link to upgrade to Internet Explorer 8 if you are interested in upgrading:  http://www.microsoft.com/windows/internet-explorer/worldwide-sites.aspx, and again, we are working to fix this on our end as quickly as we can so that those with IE6 can login to their accounts. 

 

            Again, we are seeing improvements across all fronts, and we are working as hard and fast as we can to get back on track.  We know you expect a lot from Southwest Airlines, and we’re sorry we haven’t been able to live up to your (or our) expectations.        

125 Comments

  1. My laptop or computer is Windows 7 (NOT Windows Vista, there is a difference!). I have already got Microsoft Workplace 2007, but I heard that Workplace 2010 arrived out. I was just curious to understand if it was really worth upgrading from microsoft Office 2010 keygen to Office Professional 2007. Is there any new changes to Workplace 2010? Does Office 2010 possess the Office button (from Windows 7 Starter)? What could be much better for me to do?

  2. Having 41 flights banked only to find out that I cannot use them as I could had under the freedom award program, it appears that SWA is devolving into emulating other airlines. The experience has prompted the reevaluation of our business’s allegiance with SWA, last year having spent in excess of $100k with the company. The new program has failed in the intended goal of promoting business travel, as this business will be seeking alternatives.

  3. It has been a month since your post and customer service has went downhill, the site is still very hard to navigate, prices have increased, and the new RR program really stinks. I can’t believe you broke the old rule of “don’t fix it if it’s not broke”. I was a very loyal Southwest customer and went out of my way to fly Southwest in the past even if the fare was higher. I will not be doing this anymore. You have managed to turn Southwest into “just another airline” instead of staying unique. Maybe next time you will listen to your frequent flyer customers becuase like many others who have posted comments online I am very disappointed in the “new: Southwest.
    Tom Gray

  4. Goodbye Southwest. Your RR program was the ONLY reason I was a loyal customer. I booked about 20 flights with you last year…never flew anybody but SW.

    I’m certainly not stupid enough to pay double and triple the price just to get more points. Talk about an insult!

    From here on, I will book the cheapest flight I can find. Frontier and Delta will be getting a lot more business.

    And oh yeah…I’m canceling the SW Visa card.

  5. I’m one of the business travelers SW is targetting. I fly 35-40 times a year. I was loyally SW, but no longer. I was just a couple flights away from A-List and now I’m starting over? Fail. I had existing free flights that are not expired that used to be free but now I have to pay $50 to use them? Really?? Fail.

    I’ll be sure to let the other guys in the office, who are loyal SW fliers also, know that they just got screwed, too. My 35-40 flights just went to other airlines. Congratulations on successfully alienating one of your most loyal customers for the past 4 years.

    New Rapid Rewards program? Fail.