All three Southwest credit cards are offering 40,000 bonus points, while the business version of the card is still offering the increased 60,000 point offer.
- Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card: Earn 40,000 points after you spend $1,000 in the first three months
- Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card: Earn 40,000 points after you spend $1,000 in the first three months
- Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Credit Card: Earn 40,000 points after you spend $2,000 in the first three months
- Southwest Rapid Rewards Business Premier Credit Card: Earn 60,000 points after you spend $3,000 in the first three months
- Credit Card Value
Southwest Rapid Reward points are worth around 1.4 cents per point, which means that the personal card offers are valued at around $560 and the business card is valued at about $840. Rapid Reward points also have no blackout dates so you can use the points whenever you so desire. If you’ve been following this blog for awhile you also know that Southwest is by far my favorite airline, especially since I’ve had the Companion Pass for 11 years! Southwest is by far the most flexible airline and will even allow you to get a credit or your points back if the flight goes down in price. You can also change or cancel your flight for absolutely no fee. No other airline comes even close to offering these same flexible benefits.
The BEST THING about these offers are that the points earned from the credit card sign up currently count towards the Southwest Companion Pass. You need 110,000 total points. If you grabbed the Southwest credit card offer earlier this year that offered 40k points + complimentary companion pass for 2019, this is then the perfect opportunity to help you earn the rest of the points needed to extend the pass through 2020 as well!
Southwest Credit Card Differences
With four different cards, there are bound to be some differences. For starters, there are three personal cards: Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card, Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card and Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Credit Card. There is then one business card: Southwest Rapid Rewards Business Premier Credit Card.
The Plus and Premier card are pretty similar in the benefits with one difference. The Plus card will give you 3,000 Rapid Reward points (worth $45) on every account anniversary year, where the Premier card will give you 6,000 Rapid Reward points (worth $90). Although the Plus card has a lower annual fee.
The card that really differs in its benefits is the Priority card. This card has the highest annual fee at $149 a year, but the benefits really pay for itself. With this card you’ll receive $75 in travel credit towards Southwest purchases per year. If you take that into consideration, that theoretically brings the annual fee down to $74. You’ll also receive 7,500 Rapid Reward bonus points annually (worth $113), four upgraded boarding passes per year and 20% back on your in-flight purchases.
So, which one is better?
If you are looking at just year 1 of being a cardmember, you’ll see that the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card will give the best value during the year. If you look past year 1, you’ll see that the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card is actually the best value card. While this card has the highest annual fee, the $75 travel credit and 7,500 annual bonus points more than make up for the annual fee. Actually, this is the only card where you can actually come out ahead. With both the Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Credit Card and Southwest Rapid Rewards Business Premier Credit Card you’ll be at a slight loss on a yearly basis. Remember, the $75 credit can be used on a Southwest flight, so I think of this as straight up cash.
What is the Southwest Companion Pass?
For those new to the Southwest Companion Pass, I want to quickly point out that this pass allows another passenger to fly with you for FREE an UNLIMITED number of times! Unfortunately, Chase recently put some limitations on the card last year. This means you can only have one Southwest personal card open at a given time. The days of applying for two personal cards at the same time are over. But, you can always apply for one personal card and the business card. That will give you 120,000 points — more than enough to earn the companion pass right away!
The best part of the pass is that a companion is allowed to fly with you on ANY flight. As long as there is one seat available, you can book your companion a ticket. There are NO restrictions and NO blackout dates. Not only that, even if the main passenger is flying on a free ticket with points, you can still use the companion pass! So that means on your first few flights, you can use the points earned from the welcome offer PLUS a companion can fly with you. That is essentially doubling the value of the sign up bonus!
Some things to keep in mind:
- After earning 110,000 points, the pass will be available for you the entire year it was earned PLUS the entire following calendar year. Earn the pass now, your pass with be active for the rest of 2019 and all of 2020. Or, if you prefer to earn the pass for 2020 and 2021, you’ll want to hold off on applying for this card until the end of the year.
- You cannot combine points between two accounts to count for the companion pass.
- Transferring Chase Ultimate Reward points OR hotel points to Southwest DO NOT count towards the companion pass
- Your companion can fly with you an UNLIMITED number of times during the life of the pass. You can change your companion 3 times per year.
- The only amount your companion pays is the tax which is $5.60 per one-way. International flights are more and depends on where you are flying to/from.
- You CAN use the companion pass when the main passenger is flying on a free ticket!
Who is eligible?
Unfortunately, these cards are not available to those that have received a bonus within the past 24 months. However, if you applied for one card recently, you are still eligible to earn the bonus points for another card as they are separate products. Also, Southwest credit cards are subject to Chase’s “5/24” rule.
The Southwest Rapid Reward credit cards are one of the best ways to earn the Companion Pass. The personal card offers are lower than we’ve seen in the past, so you might want to hold out until we see another limited time offer. The business card, however, is an excellent offer.
Learn more about Southwest…
- Southwest Matching to A-List Status, Again!
- How Exactly Does Southwest’s EarlyBird Check-In Work?
- Big Change! Changing a Southwest Flight Will Keep Your Fare Refundable!
- Southwest EarlyBird Check-In When Changing and Canceling a Flight
- Southwest’s Early BirdCheck-In: Reasons You Should or Should Not Purchase
- Can I Change a Southwest Flight if I Booked a Roundtrip?
- Changing and Canceling a Southwest Ticket
- Applying a Southwest Voucher to a Future Flight
- If a Southwest Flight Goes Down in Price…
- Using a Southwest Voucher
Learn more about Southwest Companion Pass
- 11 Years with the Southwest Companion Pass… Thousands of Dollars of Free Travel!
- Now That You Have the Southwest Companion Pass for 2019, Extend it Through 2020!
- Earn the Southwest Companion Pass for 2 Years the Old Fashion Way
- 10 Tips When Using the Southwest Companion Pass
- Fly to Hawaii 2-for-1 with the Southwest Companion Pass!
- Everything you Want to Know About the Southwest Companion Pass
- You Must TRAVEL By Your Southwest Companion Pass Expiration, Not Just BOOK By
- 7 Mistakes Not to Make to Earn the Southwest Companion Pass
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