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Reminder: Apply For Southwest Visa 50,000-Point Offer By October 30

by on October 28, 2013 · 30 comments

in Chase, Southwest Airlines

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

Last month, Chase relaunched Southwest Visa 50,000 point offers on all four of its Southwest cards now through Wednesday, October 30, so if you haven’t applied yet, now is the time to do so because by maximizing your spending strategy, these bonuses could help you earn a lucrative Southwest Companion Pass that would be good for both 2014-2015.

The 50,000-point offer is available on both the Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Visa and the Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Visa and on the personal and business versions of each. When you click to this landing page, you’ll see the offer for the Premier, but you can click on the Premium business card or the Plus card at the bottom and you’ll be redirected to the application page for that card (the business Plus card is at the bottom of the second landing page).

To get the 50,000 points on either, you need to spend $2,000 in the first 3 months of opening your account. The difference between the two cards is that there is a $99 fee on the Premier card and $69 fee on the Plus card. The Premier comes with 6,000 points every anniversary (~$108 in Wanna Get Away fares) and the Plus gets 3,000 ($54 in Wanna Get Away fares).

Chase periodically runs this bonus, but you never know if it will come back again. Amex used to always run transfer bonuses to Delta, but then stopped on day and we haven’t seen one in almost 18 months. My guess is that these offers will come back again, but possibly not until 2014.

I’ve written many times about this offer – basically it is marketed as 2 roundtrip flights, but you are actually getting 50,000 Rapid Rewards points. Southwest points cannot be transferred to other frequent flyer or hotel programs and the only partner airline you can redeem on is Airtran, which was acquired by Southwest in 2010.

In terms of redeeming for award seats, with Wanna Get Away fares, 60 points = $1 (until the devaluation March 31, 2014 after which you’ll need 70 points per $1), so that means you can get up to almost $900 in fares (I recently redeemed Southwest points and got 1.8 cents per point when redeeming for Wanna Get Away fares).

Chase will allow you to get the sign-up bonus for each card and it is possible to get two in one day so you can bank up to 100,000 points. Where this gets really interesting, though, is that these bonus points count towards Southwest’s Companion Pass qualification, which is one of the best frequent flyer program benefits out there.

There are two ways to qualify for a Companion Pass. Either fly 100 one-way flights within a calendar year or accrue 110,000 points in a calendar year (every January your qualifying points reset to 0) – this includes flights, credit card – including credit card sign-up bonuses and partner activity like hotel stays/transfers and rental cars.

So with the $2,000 in minimum spend on two cards plus the 50,000 point bonuses, you’re looking at 104,000 Companion Pass qualifying points and you only need 110,000 to get the pass. Why do this now?

companion-pass

Companion Pass Qualification Strategy

Well, you have 90 days to hit that minimum spend, and if you get a card (or two) now and time your spending so that you get the bonus just after January 1, 2014, your points will count towards 2014 Companion Pass qualification. So if you were to get two cards at once and do a little extra spending on them right at the beginning of the year, your Companion Pass would be good not only through the rest of 2014, but through 2015 as well! That’s two years of two people flying for the price of one.

What is a Companion Pass worth? The value of your pass is equal to the value of the dollars and points that you would spend on Southwest flights during the valid period of your pass. So if you are only planning a couple trips in the next few years, your value will be limited. However, if you and your companion travel extensively, or if you tend to commute between cities a lot, your pass could be worth thousands of dollars.

To put it in perspective, it would take $18,333 worth of flights in the “Wanna Get Away” fare class to earn the 110,000 points necessary for the Companion Pass just by flying. If you were to pay for those tickets with cash, it would cost an additional $18,333 to add a companion (or more if there is not always another seat available at the same fare class). Therefore, the traveler would save at least $18,333 by starting off with a Companion Pass beforehand.

To look at it another way, if you were to earn the 110,000 points needed for the Companion Pass, and just use all of those points to fly with a companion on Wanna Get Away fares – where your points are worth about 1.8 cents each – then the pass would be worth about $1,800 in free travel. Either way, you’re looking at some great values.

Even if you don’t want the companion pass, 50,000 Rapid Rewards points are worth almost $900 in Wanna Get Away fares, so it is one of the most solid credit card offers on the market if you fly Southwest. Check out these posts for more information on maximizing the offer:

Maximize Monday: Southwest Companion Pass FAQ And Strategies
Top 11 Ways To Top Up Your Account For The Southwest Companion Pass
Can I Get Two Southwest Cards In One Day To Qualify For A Companion Pass?
How to Earn the Southwest Companion Pass
Southwest Points vs. Southwest Credits: When Transferring Makes Sense and How to Check Availability
Maximizing the Southwest Companion Pass with AirTran Flights

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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  • Brooke Edmunds White

    I recently got my 50,000 points and, while I love to travel, my husband has been out of work lately. So I just cashed in the points for $500 in Wal-Mart cards, which will help greatly with groceries, gas, even Christmas. I’m grateful to you, Points Guy, for keeping me aware of these great deals. I look forward to travelling again soon, but until then, it’s nice to stay abreast of ways to save/earn money with my points! Thank you!

  • WK

    I’m confused on the 2014/2015 roll over. The way the comp pass language reads is you need to get points by dec 31 2013, so wouldnt points that come in Jan 1 2014 and forward only count towards 2015?

  • WK

    just got off phone with SW. there area actually 4 cards-
    SW premiere
    SW premiere business
    SW plus
    SW plus business
    all are eligible for the 50k and all are separate products so you can apply and get all for cards for a total of 200,000 points.
    this puts you within 10k points each year (2014/2015) of companion pass. (ie spend 2k on each of two cards by dec 31 so you get 100,000 points for 2014; spend 2k on each of 2 other cards in first weeks of jan, get 100,000 more points for the 2014 year which credit towards the 110,000 needed for 2015 comp pass.

    enjoy. get find, TPG

  • r0m8470

    Does Chase limit how many different credit card a holder can have?

  • MF

    Is the cardholder the only person who can use the companion pass?

  • John

    and what was the point of calling? it’s been stated time and time again by The Points Guy and other bloggers that these cards qualify for the Companion Pass. by you calling SW, and basically admitting you’re only interested in the cards for the Companion Pass, you risk killing this great deal for everyone. learn to do some online research…

  • Travlin Man

    I also don’t quite get this. Do you get the companion pass as soon as you qualify? Or not until the following year?

  • thepointsguy

    The day you qualify you get it for the rest of that year and the following year. So the goal is to qualify as early in a calendar year as possible so you get it for almost 2 years

  • thepointsguy

    No- they’ll just set a total credit limit and when you hit it you may have to shift around/cancel cards in order to get new ones approved

  • thepointsguy

    Yes- the points post into the cardholders rapid rewards account so they are the companion pass holder and can designate/change companions per the rules

  • Leslie Mellard Pineyro

    I applied for the personal card and didn’t think about setting up my southwest rapid rewards account first. Now i don’t now my rapid rewards number and want to apply for the business card from my business with same rapid rewards accounts so i can aim for the companion pass. Any suggestions?

  • Bfu

    I recently got an email from SW saying that I could apply for the premier card with the 50k bonus with 2k spent in 3months up until Nov 24 2013, wouldnt this mean that i could extend my period of spending until well into 2014?

  • Chris

    I got approved for a personal premier card, but not a business premier card. Reconsideration said I applied for too many cards (3) within the last 6 months. Is there any hope for me or am I screwed and have to wait for the next offer next year?

  • BJ

    Question… I just applied for and received a chase ink bold about 30 days ago. Could ign up for a personal plus and business plus before the deadline or will I be tripped up from submitting too many applications with chase?

  • DaleNChip

    By attempting to apply for two cards (one a Personal Premier and the second a Business Premier) in one day, I was flagged in the Chase system and denied the second card. Was told anytime there are two applications under the same SSN in 30 days there is a “high likelihood” of being declined.

    Damn. It was a good idea, though.

  • Blake

    Or just apply for two now, and complete the 2K spend in early 2014. This gives you companion pass for 2014 through 2015. Rinse and repeat again in late 2015 if it still works then.

  • Blake

    And on your last sentence, the second points credited in 2014, will apply to your companion pass earned in 2014, good for 2014 through 2015. Not your companion pass earned in 2015 good through 2015 and 2016.

  • Sam

    Quick question,

    If I were to apply for two cards, a personal and a business. And I get approved for the personal but denied for the business. Should I hit the spending limit of the personal in January, so I will get the bonus, and then reapply for the business sometime in early 2014 if they have another 50k bonus? Will this work?

    Just wondering, I’m pretty sure I will get approved for at least one card but just in case I get denied for the second card.

    Also, any real difference to apply for the Premier vs the Plus?

    Thanks!

  • Matt Diggs

    You get it a few days after you qualify – so you want to have your statement close somewhere around the 15th of the month, and be able to do your spending around there. I’m going to have mine close the 20th as I’m on vacation until about January 7th, and then hit CVS at $2500 four straight days to get 5k on each which should secure the companion pass.

  • thepointsguy

    Yea that sounds like a safe plan..no sense it hitting it now

  • thepointsguy

    Wouldn’t worry too much- many people have been approved for two in one day

  • thepointsguy

    Correct- in that case you may want to wait to apply through that targeted offer

  • thepointsguy

    Just call Chase and they’ll reassign your Rapid Rewards number linked to the card to your actual account

  • Chris Gonyea

    I currently have about 14k in points saved up. Just applied for two cards (Premier & Plus). Let’s see if I can time this right so in January I’ll have a companion pass sewed up!

  • Don

    There is verbiage both on the landing page and application indicating you can only get the bonus one time each for personal and business leading me to believe that since I’ve already opened one personal and business card and received the bonus on each (in 2012) that I can’t open the other two cards now and get the bonuses again. Any insight into this?

  • Jason

    I’m in the same boat. Either try and apply for the PLUS or meet the spend in Jan 2014 for the premier and apply for the next 50k plus or business the next time around(3-6months). You can still get the CP for like a year and a half possibly going the second route.

  • WFUDEAC

    I got denied for the business card after being instantly approved for the personal card. Even with calling for reconsideration I was denied. Can my wife apply for a business card but use my RR#? Can I re-apply for the business card and only use my SSN vs the LLC I have set-up?

  • Ben Verley

    So if I’m doing the math right, even if you don’t plan on paying for any flights or acquiring companion status, you can get ~$1700 in redemption value for $4000 in spend netting you a 42.5% cashback rate? No. Brainer.

  • Chris

    I would apply for the plus cards except I already applied for them a few years ago and I probably wouldn’t be eligible for the 50k points again. Looks like I’ll have to go the second route since it’s better than nothing. Thanks!

  • LMP

    Thank you! I actually messaged Chase and they go the number from SouthWest for me, and I was able to have it for the application on the 2nd card.

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