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Check if you're targeted to earn a 30% spend bonus on your Southwest credit card

July 05, 2020
5 min read
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Southwest credit cards are popular with Southwest flyers. But, one area where these cards fall somewhat short -- along with most other cobranded airline credit cards -- is earning rates. However, some Southwest cardholders will soon have the opportunity to boost their returns with a targeted spend bonus.

Deals We Like recently reported that some Southwest credit card holders are targeted for a 30% Rapid Rewards points bonus. Even better, these points count toward the points you'll need to earn within a calendar year to qualify for the Southwest Companion Pass. So, let's take a look at what you need to know about this promotion.

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How to find out if you're eligible

This promotion does not appear to be open to everyone. To find out if you're eligible, log in to the Promotions page of your Southwest account. If you're targeted for this offer, you'll see a promotion titled "Earn 30% bonus points."

(Image courtesy of Southwest Airlines)

Note that you will need to register for the promotion between July 1, 2020 and Oct. 31, 2020. Once you do so, you'll see green text appear below the promotion stating that you are registered.

Promotion details

To qualify, you'll first have to register for the promotion and then earn at least 6,000 Rapid Rewards points on your Southwest credit card between Aug. 1, 2020 and Oct. 31, 2020. These points will need to post to your Rapid Rewards account under the category of "credit card" during August, September or October to count.

(Image courtesy of Southwest Airlines)

To make this promotion clear, let's consider an example. If you have 2,000 points from your Rapid Rewards credit card post to your account each month during the promotion, you’ll earn a 30% bonus on these 6,000 points. This means you'll get 1,800 bonus points from Southwest, which are worth $27 based on TPG's valuations.

(Image courtesy of Southwest Airlines)

Through this promotion, you can earn up to 25,000 bonus points. Based on TPG's valuations, 25,000 Southwest points are worth $375.

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Perhaps best of all, the promotion page notes that bonus points earned through this promotion will count toward earning the Southwest Companion Pass. However, the bonus points will not count toward A-List or A-List Preferred qualification.

And, the promotion notes that points earned from a credit card sign-up bonus and points transferred from Chase Ultimate Rewards will not be eligible for the 30% bonus. Bonus points will post directly to your Southwest Rapid Rewards account, although bonus points may not post to your account until up to eight weeks after the promotion ends.

Related: How to use the Southwest Companion Pass

Earning on Southwest credit cards

Normally, the Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Credit Card, Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Credit Card, Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Credit Card and Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business Credit Card earn 2 points per dollar (a 3% return based on TPG's current valuations) on Southwest purchases and purchases made with Rapid Rewards hotel and car rental partners. And, these cards earn 1 point per dollar (1.5% return) everywhere else. So, with the promotion, you could earn 2.6 points per dollar (3.9% return) on bonus spend and 1.3 points per dollar (1.95% return) on everything else.

The Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business Credit Card offers a slightly higher earning rate. Specifically, with this card you normally earn 3 points per dollar (4.5% return based on TPG's current valuations) on Southwest purchases. You also earn 2 points per dollar (3% return) on social media and search engine advertising, internet, cable and phone services. And, you earn 1 point (1.5% return) per dollar spent on all other purchases. After this promotion is taken into account, you could earn 3.9 points per dollar (5.85% return) on flights, 2.6 points per dollar (3.9% return) on the mid-tier bonus categories and 1.3 points per dollar (1.95% return) on everything else.

Related: No flying necessary: Earn Southwest elite status by just spending on a credit card

Bottom line

We usually don’t recommend putting a lot of spend on a cobranded airline credit card. But, it can make sense for some people to do so with this promotion. Even with the bonus, you might not be getting the best returns for travel purchases or everyday spending. However, the maximum of 25,000 points can go a long way for those chasing the coveted Southwest Companion Pass.

Featured image by Alberto Riva
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.