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TPG reader Kristen tweeted this week asking:
“I’m trying to get the Southwest Companion Pass by transferring Hyatt points. Does the article you posted still work?“
I’ve said time and time again that the Companion Pass is an incredible benefit of Southwest’s Rapid Rewards program since it lets a companion fly free with you for up to two years (depending on when you qualify)- whether you pay for a ticket or use points. In order to attain the pass you will need to earn 110,000 qualifying Southwest points which can be difficult to do though there are several different ways to earn them.
Luckily you can still transfer points from Hyatt to Southwest and have them count towards your Companion Pass qualification. It’s not explicitly stated on the Companion Pass qualifying page what exactly counts when it comes to transfers, but it does say the points can be from a combination of Southwest Airlines flights and Rapid Rewards Partners per calendar year, or or you can fly 100 Southwest Airlines one-way qualifying flights per calendar year.
Unfortunately Chase Ultimate Rewards transfers to Southwest do not count towards Companion Pass qualification so if you’ve got a bunch of Chase points one of your options is to first transfer to Hyatt and then transfer those points from Hyatt to Southwest. Although you’ll lose some of the value because transferring from Hyatt to Southwest is not a 1:1 ratio (2.5 Hyatt points to 1 Southwest point), it can still make sense because when you get the Companion Pass you get status for this year and all of next year. You don’t have to actually use any of those Southwest points to get the Companion Pass, once you surpass 110,000 qualifying points, you simply earn the pass and can start using it immediately.
I also recently redeemed 360,000 Marriott points for a Flight + Hotel package which got me 7 nights in a category 8 hotel and 120,000 Southwest points and that did qualify me for the Companion Pass so that may be another option for you as well. Lastly another easy way to earn qualifying points is to sign up for the Southwest Premier or Plus credit cards which also come in business versions as well. Right now it looks like there is still a live offer for the 50,000 point bonus after $2,000 spend within the first 3 months so you may want to grab that while it’s still available.
Hopefully this answers your question and will help you get closer to earning that Companion Pass, it really is an amazing benefit! If you have additional questions, please message me on Facebook, tweet me @ThePointsGuy, or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Even after the introduction of the Chase Sapphire Reserve, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is still a fantastic choice if you want to avoid the Reserve’s $450 annual fee, earn 2x on all travel & dining and earn a 50,000 point sign up bonus.
- Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
- Named Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, July 2016
- 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- Earn 5,000 bonus points after you add the first authorized user and make a purchase in the first 3 months from account opening
- No foreign transaction fees
- 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel
- No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards