Southwest offers customers apology, frequent-flyer points

DALLAS — A week after resuming a normal flight schedule, Southwest Airlines is reaching out to some of the customers impacted by its surge of delays and cancelations with an apology and frequent-flyer points.

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In an email obtained by The Associated Press, CEO Bob Jordan offered customers 25,000 frequent-flyer points, which the airline said are worth more than $300 in flights.

“I know that no amount of apologies can undo your experience,” Jordan wrote, per the AP.

The frequent-flyer points being offered are in addition to ticket refunds and reimbursement for expenses coming from Southwest, according to the Wall Street Journal.

“For those who have requested refunds, reimbursement and/or are waiting to be reunited with lost bag(s), those processes are being handled with great urgency and we appreciate your patience,” Jordan said in the email, according to CNN.

Southwest canceled more than 15,000 flights between Dec. 22 and Dec. 30 which began when a winter storm swept across the country, the AP reported. While other airlines recovered within a couple of days, Southwest suffered what U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg termed a “melt down.”

Southwest said the bonus frequent-flyer points are being offered to customers who had flights canceled or delayed more than three hours between Dec. 24 and Jan. 2, CNN reported.

Some Southwest customers reported long wait times when they tried to redeem the bonus points to their accounts, according to the Wall Street Journal. Airline spokesman Chris Mainz said, which is handling the points system for Southwest, reported a high volume of traffic but nothing out of the ordinary. Mainz told the Wall Street Journal that he expects wait times to decrease.

In an update posted to Southwest’s website on Jan. 3, the airline said it expects “nearly all baggage delayed during the recent holiday travel week to be shipped or delivered by midweek.”

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