Changes to Southwest Rapid Rewards Program on April 17th
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
In the email that Southwest Rapid Rewards sent out today to their members, there is a link under “News For Our Valued Members” that takes you to what I assume is bad news for the Rapid Rewards program. The update says (bolding mine):
We created Rapid Rewards® because we think you deserve to actually feel rewarded. And, from time to time we must make some updates to our program. Beginning April 17, 2015, the number of Rapid Rewards Points needed to redeem for certain flights will vary based on destination, time, day of travel, demand, fare class, and other factors. However, there are still many flights which will stay at the current redemption rate. And don’t forget that when fares go on sale, so do the points needed for redeeming for a reward flight on those fares.
I have reached out to Southwest to try and see what this new Rapid Rewards system will look like, but for now we don’t know the details. I am pretty sure this doesn’t mean awards are getting cheaper….
Remember that Rapid Rewards just devalued their mostly fixed value program about a year ago by 15% for Wanna Get Away fares (from about 1.67 cents per point to 1.42 cents per point), so I’m a bit surprised they are already doing it again unless this primarily has to do with their international flights that have come online in the last year or so. The last time they made a change they gave six months notice and outlined exact details of the change ahead of time.
The message from today goes on to emphasize that they still offer unlimited reward seats, no blackout dates, no fee to redeem or cancel awards, etc. That’s all well and good, really, but a variable rate redemption system combined with fixed-ish value points doesn’t sound like a good change for us. At least the email doesn’t mention Companion Pass changes…
I’ll keep you posted when I learn more, but I would book any Southwest awards that you have had your eyes on before April 17th, especially since you can re-price them if the points price drops anyway.
Welcome to The Points Guy!
Earn 90,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card in the first three months of card membership. Offer ends 11/10/2021.
With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.
- Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer expires 11/10/2021.
- Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
- Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
- Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery and at U.S. supermarkets.
- Earn 1X Miles on all other eligible purchases.
- Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. *Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $75 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
- Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights.
- Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®.
- Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- $250 Annual Fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees