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Southwest Airlines In The U.S. Will No Longer Accept Cash
In an effort to cut down the handling of paper currency, Southwest Airlines has announced it would stop accepting cash payments to book flights, pay for upgrades, and extra luggage.
Southwest’s announcement comes amid a nationwide shortage of coins. Coins are sitting idle in closed stores, people’s homes, and they’re not making it to banks and companies that need them most.
The company has been reportedly trying to get rid of cash for years.
“The shift into cashless at the airport was in the works for a while before COVID,” stated Southwest spokesman Dan Landson. “And we stopped accepting money onboard in 2008.”
Southwest joins the list of major airlines that banned cash as an acceptable form of payment in the US.
“The majority of our mainline cities have been cashless for a while,” said American Airlines spokesman Ross Feinstein. “A few regional cities are finishing the transition.”
Southwest is still allowing cash payments at international ticket counters.
Across the country, major companies are scaling back on the forms of payment they accept to cut down on social contact to help limit the spread of the novel coronavirus.
Restaurants have been among the most aggressive in only taking debit and credit cards for transactions.
While credit and debit cards carry a cost for merchants, many argue that card payments it lowers the burden on businesses to accept cash because employees would have to use cash registers, count the money, and then transport that cash to banks using security services.
Starting June 3, the airline only allowed cash at 25 of its biggest U.S. airports, including Dallas Love Field.