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Yesterday I wrote about a method to earn the Southwest companion pass by using just 90,000 SPG points. Now that you can link SPG and Marriott accounts and transfer points freely between the two, using SPG points is now an option that was never available beforehand.
With that being said, I want to make sure you pay attention to timing when going for the Southwest Companion Pass. And this goes for whatever method you use to earn the pass. To earn a companion pass, you need to accrue 110,000 points during the calendar year. Points do not rollover and accounts reset come January 1st. Once you earn the companion pass, the pass is valid during the remainder of the calendar year it was earned plus the entire next calendar year. So if you earn the pass tomorrow, for example, you’ll have the pass for the rest of 2016 plus all of 2017. That gives you about 15 months to use the pass.
Now, if you wait until January 1st to earn the 110,000 points, that will give you the pass for almost 24 full months! So if you earn the pass January 1, 2017, you will have the pass for all of 2017 and 2018.
Just make sure to keep timing in mind when going for the pass. If you have many Southwest flights over the next few months then getting it now is great, but if you hardly have any travel book then getting it valid through the end of 2018 is probably a better idea.
Will you be going for the pass? If so, what method are you using to earn it?