New Southwest Credit Card + 80,000 Point Bonus… One Step Closer to the Companion Pass!

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Southwest just announced a brand new credit card in their line up called the Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business Credit CardNot only is this a great opportunity to up our Southwest Rapid Rewards account it is an amazing way to get one step closer to the Southwest Companion Pass.

This is by far the best Southwest credit card offer we’ve ever seen amongst all of the Southwest cards. The 80,000 points earned are worth a fixed $1,120 towards Southwest travel (Wanna Getaway fares).

The other benefits that come with the card are well worth it as well, and include:

9,000 Bonus Points

After every cardmember anniversary, you’ll receive 9,000 bonus points to your account. This is worth approximately $124 in travel on a Southwest “Wanna Getaway” fare. You can then use those bonus points towards a future Southwest flight. Since the annual fee of the card is $199, you can think of it more like $75 a year after this benefit is tacked on (which has a fixed valued).

Upgraded Boarding Positions

Southwest has a unique seat assignment policy where you actually do NOT pick a seat before boarding the plane. Unlike some of the other carriers, you can’t even pay more to pick a seat. Instead it is a “first come, first serve” type of seat picking process, so the earlier you board the plane, the better chance you have of picking a better seat. Upon checking into your flight, Southwest will give you a boarding number and you’ll board the plane based on that number. Now, to be able to board the plane first, you can purchase an upgraded boarding position when you arrive to the gate. Assuming available, it will give you boarding position A1-A15, which is the best boarding position you can have.

With this credit card, you’ll receive four complimentary upgraded boarding positions a year. Typically it costs either $30, $40, or $50 to purchase one of these upgraded boarding positions so this benefit is worth between $120-$200! Now, if you end up with boarding position A20, for example, it is not necessary to purchase an upgraded boarding position, but if you end up with C20, for example, securing position A1-A15 is huge.

So while I do not want to say you are coming out ahead another $120-$200 because this might not have been something that you’d necessarily would have paid for, it is a nice perk to have.

Global Entry Reimbursement

This card will reimburse you for your $100 Global Entry cost once every four years. Even if you already have Global Entry, you can use the reimbursement for another family member or friend. The names do not have to match, you just need to use your credit card to pay the application fee. If this is something you’d be purchasing anyways, then take the $100 into account when justifying the annual fee.

Inflight Wi-Fi Credits

If you typically pay for Wi-Fi during your Southwest flights, this is huge! Having this card ultimately gives you free Wi-Fi always. While the terms state that you are limited to a total of 365 credits per year, that should be more than enough! Typically Wi-Fi on Southwest costs $8, so let’s say you average 6 roundtrip flights a year, that is a $48 of savings during the year.

Earn the Southwest Companion Pass!

The Southwest Companion Pass is by far my favorite benefit in the entire travel industry. It allows a friend or family member (really anyone) to fly with you for FREE (plus taxes/fees) an UNLIMITED number of times during the life of the pass. There truly are no stipulations that come with this pass, there just has to be at least one seat left for purchase to add on your companion. For domestic flights, the extra taxes are $5.60 each way, although international flights (to the Caribbean or Mexico) cost slightly more. I personally have had the Southwest Companion Pass for over 11 years and it has saved my family thousands and thousands of dollars.

We are both flying for free—I am using my points for my flight and my daughter is on the Companion Pass

To earn the pass, you need to earn 110,000 qualifying points within a calendar year. Since the welcome offer comes with 80,000 bonus points that gets you almost there. You can even apply for one of the other Southwest credit cards as well and that will get you the points needed right away. Related: Top Ways to Earn the Southwest Companion Pass

If you earn the pass in 2019, it will be valid through December 31, 2020. Or, if you prefer to have the pass during the 2020/2021 calendar years, wait until January 2020 for the points to hit your account. Related: When to Apply for the Southwest Credit Cards.

Overall…

I am extremely excited to see a new Southwest credit card enter the market. Not only to earn $1,000+ towards Southwest points but also as another way to earn the Southwest Companion Pass. Although the annual fee is more than some of the other Southwest credit cards, the benefits are worthwhile. If you fly Southwest often, then the Wi-Fi credits, upgraded boarding positions, the Global Entry and the annual point bonuses will make you come out way ahead of the annual fee paid.


Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business Credit Card

Bonus Offer: Earn 80,000 points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open. Earn 3x points on Southwest Airlines purchases; 2x points on social media, search engine advertising, Internet, cable and phone services; and 1x point on all other purchases. $199 annual fee.

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