It is no secret that applying for the Southwest Airlines credit card will help you towards earning the Southwest Airlines companion pass. If this is how you plan to earn the unlimited companion pass read on to ensure you apply and meeting your minimum spend during the right time. You can learn more about all Airline credit card offers here.
Once you accrue the necessary 110,000 points to earn companion pass status, the pass will be available for you for the entire year it was earned PLUS the entire following calendar year. So if you earn the pass in 2014, your pass will be active for the rest of the year and all of 2015. If you earn the pass in 2015, it will be available to you for the rest of 2015 and 2016.
So before meet the minimum spend requirements for the credit card, decide when you want the companion pass. Applying and meeting the minimum spend requirements strategically is one thing you do not want to mess up! The 110,000 points must be accrued in the same calendar year. Once January 1st hits, and points earned will no longer carry over and your qualifying points counter will reset to zero.
Want it for 2014 and 2015? Meet the minimum spend requirements in 2014 and have the points hit your account in 2014. You will need to spend $2,000 within the first three months. I suggest hitting the minimum spend amount quickly as the points do not hit your account until a few days AFTER your statement close date. The points must hit in 2014 regardless of when the minimum spend was met. So for example – if your billing cycle ends on the 4th of every month and you hit the minimum spend on December 3rd, the points will post a few days after December 4, 2014. Now, if you hit the minimum spend on December 6th, your points will post a few days after January 4, 2015 since the spend occurred during the December 5-January 4 billing cycle. If your billing cycle ends on the 28th of every month and you hit the minimum spend on December 3rd, your points will post a few days after December 28. The problem with that is if they do not post by December 31 they will hit your Southwest account in 2015 and count towards 2015 qualifying points.
Want it for 2015 and 2016? Meet the minimum spend requirements in 2015. You want the points to hit your account in 2015 as points from 2013 DO NOT carry over. Since you have three months to hit the minimum spend, think about the timing that works for you so the points hit in 2015. I personally recommend giving yourself the first few weeks in January to meet the $2,000 minimum spend requirements, just to be safe. You can put $1,999 on your card in 2014, but that last dollar must hit your account in 2015. So come January 1, 2015 if you are able to spend $2,000, you’ll earn your companion pass probably late January and will get an entire 23 months of usage! Remember though, the $2,000 you put on your card also counts towards qualifying points, so any spend on the card in 2014 will not count to earn the status in 2015.
Southwest Credit Card Offer: There are four Southwest credit cards offering 50,000 points after you spend $2,000 on the card within three months. This card offer is expiring either Tuesday (Dec 2) night or Wednesday (Dec 3) – it is still unclear. However, typically a link can be found for one or two of the cards offering the 50,000 point offer, but there is no guarantee. If you were looking to apply for this card, I suggest applying now. Remember, you can apply for two different Southwest credit cards as long as you currently do not have a Southwest card. If approved, you will receive the bonus points for both cards since they are different products. This is a great offer, especially if you are able to get the Southwest Companion Pass. The 50,000 points earned are worth a fixed $714 towards a “Wanna Getaway” flight on Southwest. You can read more about the credit card and this particular offer here. You can also learn more about an easy way to get the Southwest Companion Pass here.
Feel free to ask any comments about earning this pass and the pass in general as I have a lot of experience with it. It is by far my favorite travel perk in the entire travel industry!
Disclosure: These post contains affiliate links – this is a card I personally have and advocate as it is a great offer and I LOVE the companion pass!