POSTED: Wednesday, March 2, 2011 - 5:33pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, March 2, 2011 - 5:51pm
Dallas — Southwest Airlines Co. has been struggling with technology problems that led to delayed flights and snarled its revamped frequent-flier program.
The airline said Wednesday that it suffered a 90-minute telecommunications outage that delayed 300 flights on Tuesday by an average of 20 to 40 minutes.
Southwest spokesman Chris Mainz said the outage left airport agents unable to swipe boarding passes over readers as passengers got on planes. Agents had to handle the boarding process manually until the outage ended. No flights were canceled, he said.
Southwest customers also had problems using the overhauled Rapid Rewards frequent-flier program immediately after it was rolled out Tuesday. They were unable to get information about their accounts or make any changes to them.
Mainz said that glitch was fixed overnight and Rapid Rewards was working properly but more slowly than usual on Wednesday. Customer-service representatives were swamped with calls, he said.
The telecommunications outage and the Rapid Rewards meltdown were unrelated, he said.