Southwest Devalues Rapid Rewards Redemptions on Wanna Get Away Fares

by on September 23, 2013 · 22 comments

in Southwest

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Update: This offer is no longer available. View the current offer for the Chase Southwest Rapid Rewards credit card here.

Southwest Rapid Rewards is a fixed-value program that has been pretty generous with their Wanna Get Away fare redemptions. Currently you can redeem for any seat and 60 points = $1 worth of Wanna Get Away fares, which means you get 1.67 cents per point. However, starting March 31, 2014, Rapid Rewards members will need to redeem 70 points per $1, bringing your value to 1.4 cents per point. Business Select and Anytime fare redemptions remain the same, but they’ve never been a really great value anyway.

Southwest change letter

While I wouldn’t call this a massive devaluation, it is absolutely still a devaluation, and if you’re not happy about it, I’d highly recommend, writing, Tweeting and Facebooking Southwest to let them know you are dissatisfied. Here is their contact information:

Southwest Airlines
PO Box 36647-1CR
Dallas, TX 75235
Phone: 1-214-932-0333
Twitter: @SouthwestAir
Facebook: Southwest Facebook Page

That said, I do appreciate that they’ve given us a lot of advance notice. To put this in perspective, the current 50,000-point sign-up bonus on the Southwest Premier Visa will get you about $833 toward Wanna Get Away fares. After March 31, 2014, you’re only looking at ~$715. Still a lucrative offer, but less valuable.

It appears that how you earn points will not be affected along with redemptions. Here’s the current earning structure.

Southwest earnWanna Get Away Fares: 6 points per $1
Anytime Fares: 10 points per $1
Business Select Fares: 12 points per $1

You can also transfer in points from Chase Ultimate Rewards at an instant 1:1 ratio if you have the Ink Plus, Ink Bold or Sapphire Preferred cards.

Disclaimer: 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.

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  • MileValue

    Brutal devaluation. Interesting that they are also devaluing the payback to flying from 10% (earn 6 per dollar, spend 60 per dollar) to 8.6% (earn 6 per dollar, spend 70 per dollar.)

  • PSL

    I guess this is what happens when both the Southwest credit cards and the various Chase Ultimate Rewards cards give out such generous bonuses. This devaluation stinks!

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  • Nick Roosevelt

    What is the history on fixed-currency devaluation? The US Dollar already devalues with inflation and as the industry recovers, fares are increasing.

  • Mike Reed

    And, on the FL side, the companion pass is worth less every time a route is moved to Southwest. WN companion pass holders are fine, but FL folks get the shaft.

  • Ryan Pham

    I don’t think the 2nd leg is a devaluation. If u earned 7 per dollar instead of 6 per dollar, wouldn’t it be a wash?

  • Jason

    I earned most my points from car rental. It will be interesting to see if they increase the earnings from hotel, car rental and gift card purchases. Currently those earnings are in the increments of 600 points ($10 now). If it goes up to 700 points ($10 after 3/31/2014), then it is a wash.

  • jake

    Southwest rewards are going the way of Delta. Still there is alot of ways to earn southwest points and no baggage fees

  • HikerT

    Apparently those little doohickeys on the wings don’t save Southwest Airlines as much as they claim. :p

  • Rob P


  • Bryce Griffler

    Certainly going to try and use these before the change goes into effect. I’m waiting on my 50,000 bonus to come in. I assume it’ll happen as soon as the next bill cycles through (will have reached spend min).

  • Jen

    So with this devaluation…. I am about 50k away from a companion pass on southwest… Will I have to open up the other southwest Visa card to get the 50k additional bonus points needed to achieve companion status OR can I just transfer my Chase Ultimate Rewards over to Southwest and apply those points towars my companion pass?

  • thepointsguy

    Chase transfers do not count towards companion pass

  • GAM

    Inflation is fairly predictable in the United States and the USD isn’t experiencing any kind of run-away inflation.

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  • Guest

    Couldn’t I redeem my points for a southwest gift card, and then use the gift card for cash tickets, and avoid the devaluation?

  • southwest ff

    is it me or are we earning less points for wanna get away? as a a-list preferred, i used to earn 12pts, now only 11?? someone confirm this?

  • Ie-Chen Cheng

    yes, i’m getting only 11 as well. does that still make the points worth 1.4 cents?

  • Ie-Chen Cheng

    If as a A-lister, you earn 11points/$, is it still worth 1.4 cents per dollar?

  • Edgar Perez

    With the sale going on now till July 17 it looks like it is very close to 60 pts per $1. Is that normally the case to see the points value gong on sale along with the dollar amount?

  • Edgar Perez

    Also, when you calculate the value, do you include Excise Tax, Segment Fee and Passenger Facility Charge which you do pay if you pay cash and don’t pay if you pay with points? Does not seem like you do which should increase the value of a RR point

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