Easy Way to Earn Southwest Companion Pass for 2018 and 2019 – Fly for Free for 2 Years!

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If you’ve been following this blog for awhile, you are probably already aware that the Southwest Companion pass is my favorite benefit in the entire travel world! With this pass, a companion can fly with you an UNLIMITED number of times for the calendar year it is earned plus the following calendar year. While there are many ways to earn the pass, the easiest way is by signing up for their credit card (if you are okay with that and eligible for another Chase credit card). If you earn the pass now, you’ll get close to 2 years for the pass – the rest of 2018 and all of 2019!

As I wrote about yesterday, the two Southwest personal cards just increased their sign up bonus to 50,000 points and the business card is still offering 60,000 points.

Learn About the Best Rewards Credit Card

Key Link: 

  • Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Plus Card: Earn 50,000 points after spending $2,000 on the card within the first 3 months; $69 annual fee. This card will earn you 3,000 bonus points on your account anniversary. Learn more
  • Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Premier Card: Earn 50,000 points after spending $2,000 on the card within the first 3 months; $99 annual fee. This card will earn you 6,000 bonus points on your account anniversary. Learn more
  • Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Business Premier Card: Earn 60,000 points after spending $3,000 on the card within the first 3 months; $99 annual fee. This card will earn you 6,000 bonus points on your account anniversary. Learn more

As of today, the the bonus points earned from the sign up bonus DO COUNT towards the 110,000 points required to obtain the pass. If you apply for one of the personal cards plus the business card (yes, you are allowed to have two Southwest credit cards in your wallet) that will give you 110,000 points – the exact amount required for the companion pass! That means you’ll automatically receive the pass once the points post. Or, if you apply for the two personal cards, that will give you 100,000 points + 4,000 points from meeting the minimum spend. You will then only be 6,000 points shy of earning the pass. You can earn this from additional credit card spend, partner offers, flying Southwest, etc. This prior post will list out all the other ways to earn points towards the companion pass. Now, if you call Southwest to inquire if the points count towards the companion pass they will most likely tell you no. Do not be discouraged, they do count!

So lets say you apply for the two cards now, you’ll want to meet the minimum spend as quickly as possible. Typically, the bonus points post a few days after the statement credit in which you meet your minimum spend. If you apply for the two cards now, your statement credit will close at some point in February, so you should be able to earn the pass at the end of February. UPDATE: Chase will no longer approve you for both personal cards, you can only hold one at a time. However, you can still apply for one business and one personal card to earn the companion pass.

Southwest Companion Pass FAQs

While this prior post lists out Everything You Need to Know About the Southwest Companion Pass, I put together an FAQ section to help answer all your questions.

Flying limitations: With the companion pass there are no black out dates or seat restrictions – if there is a seat available for purchase, it is available for your companion. The companion pass can even be used if points were redeemed for a free flight. This can result in both passengers flying for FREE (plus the taxes/passenger)!

Number of times the companion pass can be used: Unlimited! There is no cap on the number of times the pass can be used.

Who can be a companion: Anyone can be your companion – friends, family, a complete stranger. However, the companion pass can only be switched up to three times per year. Since you need to allocate your companion when getting the pass, this allows you 4 people to use the pass per year (those people can be repeated and put back on as the companion as well but counts as one of your allowed changes). To change your companion pass, call Southwest Customer Service (1-800-IFLYSWA) and they will easily assist you on the spot.

Companion pass expiration: The companion pass is valid the remainder of the year it was earned plus the following calendar year. For example, if you earn the pass February 2018, you will have it for the rest of 2018, plus all of 2019.

My Experience with the Southwest Companion Pass

I’ve had the Southwest Airlines Companion Pass for about 10 years now. It’s been a really long time so I’ve completely lost track on the exact number of years! I’ve used it for flights to Orlando, Ft. Lauderdale, Tampa, Costa Rica, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Aruba, Cancun, Washington DC, Denver, Chicago, Detroit, Salt Lake City, etc. I love that I can use the pass for my husband or my daughter while redeeming points for my flight. And Southwest flights can be canceled with no fee!! If you use points, the points go straight back into your account. If you pay for the flight, you receive a voucher for the amount paid to be used within a year of the date purchased.

I personally love the Companion Pass as it has saved me a ton of money throughout the years. And I also love Southwest too, so getting a free flight on a Southwest flight is a double win for me. Let me know if you have any questions!

Key Link: 

  • Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Plus Card: Earn 50,000 points after spending $2,000 on the card within the first 3 months; $69 annual fee. This card will earn you 3,000 bonus points on your account anniversary. Learn more
  • Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Premier Card: Earn 50,000 points after spending $2,000 on the card within the first 3 months; $99 annual fee. This card will earn you 6,000 bonus points on your account anniversary. Learn more
  • Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Business Premier CardEarn 60,000 points after spending $3,000 on the card within the first 3 months; $99 annual fee. This card will earn you 6,000 bonus points on your account anniversary. Learn more

The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

Comments

    • @matt – thanks for pointing it out. The link is there, it just stated “50,000” instead of “60,000” so updated the wording.

    • Hi, I tired to use the links provided but the chase website opens up and says ” Notice
      System issue, please try again later.”

      I tried the plus and premier. Let me know if theres a new link? or anything else I can do.
      Thanks!

  1. How did you have the pass for the last 10 years if Chase only allows you to have the bonus once every 2 years? Am I missing something? Thanks!

    • @Chuck – There are many other ways to earn the Companion Pass without actually applying for the credit card. I’m in the midst for putting a post together on how I’ve earned the pass year after year.

  2. These links work:

    Southwest Plus and Premier referrals. Both cards come with a 50,000 point sign up bonus after meeting the $2,000 minimum spend. This is an easy way to earn the Southwest Companion pass.

    Southwest Plus:

    https://applynow.chase.com/FlexAppWeb/renderApp.do?SPID=FQWW&CELL=63HB&MSC=1526257827

    Southwest Premier:

    https://applynow.chase.com/FlexAppWeb/renderApp.do?SPID=FQX3&CELL=63HB&MSC=1526260153

    Thanks and good luck. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask.

  3. I just earned the SW Companion Pass through 2 SW credit card sign ups (spending completed Jan 2018). Online it shows my Companion Pass is “Earned Through 12/30/2018”. My understanding was that it should be valid through Dec 2019. What am I missing?

    • @Jonathan – Will you send me a screen shot with what you are referring to? It might just be that your current companion expires that date, but you actually have the pass through December 2019.

      • I have the same situation as Jonathan. I just received my Southwest Companion Pass and on the card it is valid thru 12/31/2018. I thought it is good for the rest of the year and 2019.

  4. Hello, I recently applied for both the SW Premier and Plus cards. I was immediately approved for the Plus but I was denied a week later for the Premier due to a “duplicate application.” I’m pretty sure it wasn’t a duplicate since I had two different referrals, one for Plus and one for Premier… Any thoughts on what I should do next? Have you heard of anyone else that this happened to? I have excellent credit and haven’t been near the 5/24 so it definitely wasn’t that.

    • @Kaitlyn – I’ve seen this happen a few times. I would call the reconsideration line and explain that this was in fact an application for a different product and that you are looking to apply for both – if they ask why let them know you need to keep expenses separate. Most likely the system just automatically denied you thinking it was an error since you just applied for one of the SW cards. Let me know!

  5. Hi Deals. Trying to get SW CP & got SW Plus card. Should I book car rental & hotels using Plus card to earn Pts for CP or use my CSR for car rental due to primary rental insurance? Any tips for car & hotels to see Grand Canyon? Thank you.

    • @Johnny – It depends on what you care more about – earning points towards the pass or the rental car insurance. Unfortunately I haven’t been to the grand canyon since I was 10 years old so I do not have any tips.

  6. I have a few referrals left for the Southwest PLUS and PREMIER 50,000 points credit card. Spend $2,000 within the first three months to earn 52,000 per card! Please email me at phu_anny at hotmail.com for questions or for a referral link!

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