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Wallet Watch: Southwest Raising Drink Prices

For years, Southwest has bragged about its simple, low price for all onboard alcoholic beverages: “$5 happy hour, every hour.” In fact, Southwest has held to that $5 drink price since 2009.

On March 1, Southwest’s drink prices got a bit more complicated, and a bit more expensive:

  • Beer: $6 (Miller Lite, Dos Equis); $7 (Fat Tire, Lagunitas, Leinenkugel’s Summer Shandy
  • Wine: $6
  • Liquor: $7

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The good news is that Southwest’s drink prices are still $1 or so below most other airlines’.

[st_content_ad]In other good news, the new pricing won’t affect Southwest’s popular drink coupons, doled out to members of the airline’s Rapid Rewards program and to Business Select passengers.

A modest price rise after all this time is no cause for concern. But combined with Southwest’s recent increase in priority-boarding fees, it’s an sure sign that Southwest is looking closely at such so-called ancillary fees to nudge up its top and bottom lines.

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Worrisome trend?

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After 20 years working in the travel industry, and 15 years writing about it, Tim Winship knows a thing or two about travel. Follow him on Twitter @twinship.

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By Tim Winship

After 20 years working in the travel industry, and 15 years writing about it, Tim Winship knows a thing or two about travel. Follow him on Twitter @twinship.

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