Update: These offers for the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card, the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card and the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Card have expired. Learn more about the current offers here.
For the past couple of months, Southwest and Chase have been offering increased welcome bonuses on three of their co-branded cards. These offers are changing soon, so I wanted to look at the cards in a bit more detail.
Southwest Card offers ending January 9, 2019
Currently the following credit cards are offering increased welcome bonuses:
- Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card ($69 annual fee)
- Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card ($99 annual fee)
- Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card ($149 annual fee)
The cards are all offering the same tiered bonus of up to 60,000 Rapid Rewards bonus points, as follows:
- Earn 40,000 Rapid Rewards points after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months
- Earn an additional 20,000 points after spending a total of $12,000 in the first 12 months
If you’ve been considering any of these cards, the current welcome bonuses are expected to be pulled on January 9, 2019, so you have about a week left to take advantage of these deals.
We don’t know how the offers will be changing after that — they haven’t yet revealed that — though my expectation would be that the offers will get worse.
Do note the following terms when it comes to eligibility for these cards (in addition to these cards being subjected to 5/24, like all Chase cards nowadays):
The product is not available to either (i) current Cardmembers of any Southwest Rapid Rewards® Credit Card, or (ii) previous Cardmembers of any Southwest Rapid Rewards Credit Card who received a new Cardmember bonus within the last 24 months. This does not apply to Cardmembers of the Southwest Rapid Rewards Business Card and Employee Credit Card products.
This is a good time to earn Companion Pass
One of the best aspects of Southwest’s Rapid Rewards program is the incredible value their Companion Pass offers.
For those of you not familiar with Companion Pass, it allows someone else to travel with you for the entire year. You still have to pay the taxes on their ticket, but the Companion Pass is valid on both award and revenue tickets. You can change your designated companion three times in a year, so you can potentially even use this for different people.
This is an outrageously good deal, and requires accruing 110,000 Rapid Rewards points in a calendar year (only certain types of points accrual qualify, and points earned with Southwest Cards are among those).
Since it’s the beginning of the year, now is a great time to get this bonus and work your way towards Companion Pass.
The Southwest Priority Card is especially compelling
In July 2018, the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card was introduced. Chase has been reworking much of their card portfolio to make their cards more rewarding long-term, and this card is among those.
The Priority Card has a $149 annual fee and offers:
- A 7,500 point anniversary bonus each year (which I value at $100+)
- A $75 annual Southwest travel credit
- Four upgraded boardings per year when available
- 20% back on inflight drinks and wifi
To me the anniversary bonus and annual travel credit more than justify the annual fee, and the upgraded boardings and inflight savings are the icing on the cake (upgraded boarding is an especially valuable benefit on Southwest).
You have just about a week remaining to take advantage of the current bonuses of up to 60,000 Rapid Rewards points on the Southwest Plus, Southwest Premier, or Southwest Priority. These bonuses can be especially valuable if you’re trying to earn Companion Pass with Southwest.