Southwest Airlines, known for its family-friendly approach, affordability, and numerous flight options out of Houston, has recently introduced an increased sign-up bonus for their credit cards. This exciting new offer allows customers to earn a 60,000-point sign-up bonus and a 30% off promo code. In this article, we’ll explore the details of this offer, the benefits of the various Southwest credit cards, and how to make the most of this incredible deal.
Keep in mind that now is probably not the time to sign-up if you are going for the Companion Pass. That is best to do at the beginning of the year in combination with a business card.
Southwest Airlines Credit Card Sign-Up Bonus: What’s on Offer?
All three Southwest Rapid Rewards personal credit cards are currently offering a two-part sign-up bonus. To unlock this bonus, cardholders must spend $3,000 within the first three months of opening their account:
- Earn 60,000 Rapid Rewards bonus points
- Receive a 30% Southwest promo code offer, which can be used for a one-way or roundtrip flight by October 31, 2024
This is the first time Southwest Airlines has included a promo code voucher as part of their credit card sign-up bonus, making this an exceptional opportunity for new cardholders.
Eligibility for Southwest Airlines Credit Card Sign-Up Bonus
To be eligible for the sign-up bonus, applicants must not be:
- A current cardmember of any personal Southwest Visa Card
- A previous cardmember of any personal Southwest Visa Card who received a new cardmember bonus within the last 24 months
Additionally, all three versions of the Southwest Visa card are subject to Chase’s 5/24 rule. This means that you typically won’t be approved if you’ve opened five or more new card accounts in the past 24 months (some exclusions apply, such as certain business credit cards).
Comparing the Three Southwest Personal Credit Cards
The 60,000-point sign-up bonus and 30% off promo code are available on the following three Southwest personal credit cards:
- Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Card
- Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Card
- Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Card
While the sign-up bonus is the same for each card, their annual fees, benefits, and rewards structures vary. Let’s explore the differences between these three cards to help you choose the best one for your needs.
We typically open the plus card with the lowest annual fee, but you are welcome to compare the benefits!
Each Southwest personal credit card comes with a different annual fee:
- Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Card: $69
- Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Card: $99
- Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Card: $149
Anniversary Bonus Points
To encourage cardholders to keep their accounts open, each Southwest personal credit card offers a different number of anniversary bonus points:
- Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Card: 3,000 points
- Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Card: 6,000 points
- Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Card: 7,500 points
Earning Points on Spending
The three personal Southwest credit cards also offer different rewards structures for earning points on spending:
- Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Card: 2x points on Southwest purchases, local transit and commuting, internet, cable, phone services, and select streaming; 1x points on all other purchases
- Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Card: 3x points on Southwest purchases, 2x points on local transit and commuting, internet, cable, phone services, and select streaming; 1x points on all other purchases; earn 1,500 Tier Qualifying Points for every $10,000 spent on the card
- Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Card: 3x points on Southwest purchases, 2x points on local transit and commuting, internet, cable, phone services, and select streaming; 1x points on all other purchases; earn 1,500 Tier Qualifying Points for every $10,000 spent on the card
Foreign Transaction Fees
The Southwest Plus Card has a 3% foreign transaction fee, while the Southwest Premier and Southwest Priority cards have no foreign transaction fees, making them excellent options for international travel.
Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Card: The Premium Choice
While the benefits of the Southwest Plus Card and Southwest Premier Card are similar, the Southwest Priority Card stands out as the most premium option. With a $149 annual fee, it offers extra perks that can easily justify the additional cost.
$75 Annual Travel Credit
The Southwest Priority Card provides a $75 travel credit every anniversary year, starting from the first year. This credit can be applied toward any Southwest flight purchase, excluding inflight drink, Wi-Fi purchases, and upgraded boardings. The statement credit is posted to your account on the same day as the eligible purchase.
If you spend at least $75 per year on Southwest, this credit effectively reduces the card’s annual fee to $74.
Four Upgraded Boardings
Southwest Priority Cardholders receive four upgraded boardings per anniversary year when available. These can be used on four separate occasions or on a single flight with three additional passengers. Upgraded boarding positions (A1-15) can be purchased at the departure gate or ticket counter on the day of travel. Reimbursement for these boardings may take up to eight weeks to appear on your account, but it usually posts faster.
The cost of upgraded boardings varies from $30-80, depending on the length of the flight and demand. This benefit could be worth $120-320 annually, making it a valuable addition to the card’s perks.
Southwest Priority Card: Exceptional Value for Frequent Flyers
For those who fly Southwest regularly, the Priority Card offers incredible value. Each anniversary year, cardholders receive a $75 Southwest Airlines travel credit and 7,500 points, which are valued at $90. This adds up to $165 in value, easily covering the card’s $149 annual fee. The upgraded boardings further enhance the card’s appeal.
Redeeming Rapid Rewards Points: What to Expect
Southwest Rapid Rewards is a revenue-based program, meaning the number of points required for an award redemption is directly tied to the cash price of the ticket. As a general rule, you need 83 points per dollar of airfare, with each point being worth approximately 1.2 cents when redeemed for flights.
Benefits of Redeeming Points on Southwest
There are several advantages to redeeming points on Southwest Airlines:
- Free changes and cancellations: Southwest Airlines doesn’t charge change or cancellation fees, allowing you to apply the value of your ticket towards future travel if needed.
- Two free checked bags: Southwest offers two free checked bags on all itineraries, including Rapid Rewards redemptions.
- Free snacks and soft drinks: Southwest doesn’t charge for snacks or soft drinks, and all inflight offerings are free, except for Wi-Fi and alcohol.
- No seat assignment fees: Southwest has open seating, so your seat depends on your check-in time. To secure a better boarding position, make use of the upgraded boardings or EarlyBird check-in provided with your credit card.
- Points don’t expire: As long as your account is open, your points will not expire.
Southwest’s Premier & Performance Business Cards
For those seeking a business credit card, Southwest offers two excellent options:
- The $99 annual fee Southwest® Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Credit Card: Offers a 60,000-point sign-up bonus after spending $3,000 within three months and provides 6,000 anniversary points every year.
- The $199 annual fee Southwest® Rapid Rewards® Performance Business Credit Card: Offers an 80,000-point sign-up bonus after spending $5,000 within three months and features perks like 9,000 anniversary bonus points, four upgraded boardings per year, a daily Wi-Fi credit on Southwest, a Global Entry or TSA PreCheck credit, and more.
The current Southwest Airlines credit card sign-up bonus of 60,000 points and a 30% off promo code presents a fantastic opportunity for new cardholders. Each card offers unique benefits, but the Southwest Priority Card stands out as the premium choice for frequent Southwest travelers and the Plus for travelers who want the points without the perks! Don’t miss out on this exclusive sign-up bonus and elevate your Southwest flying experience.