All 3 Southwest Cards Offering 60K Bonuses

Right now all three Chase Southwest credit cards are once again offering 60K bonus points. The 60,000 offer is significant because it means that you don’t have to do any spending beyond earning the sign-up bonuses to earn the Southwest Companion Pass. If you’re not familiar, the Southwest Companion Pass allows a companion to fly with you for free for up to two calendar years. It’s easily one of the most valuable perks available to earn via credit cards.

Why these offers are so valuable

Typically the best offers for these credit cards are for 50,000 Rapid Rewards so even when you get approved for two of the best Southwest credit cards and meet their minimum spend requirements (usually $2,000), you still have to spend an additional $6,000 if you’re relying on credit card spend to earn the Companion Pass. This is not always an easy task for many.

But with these two 60,000 offers, you’ll hit the Companion Pass threshold with the sign-up bonuses alone and have a total of 124,000 Rapid Rewards to spend on your redemptions. If you’re strategic with your Rapid Rewards, 124,000 Rapid Rewards could get you very far. From Houston, 124,000 points could get me a hand full of roundtrips for me and Brad to just about anywhere we wanted to go in the US as well as many Caribbean destinations.

We used our Companion Pass to go swimming with whale sharks in Mexico.

I’ve shown before how it’s possible for the Southwest Companion Pass to be worth more than $3,000 just from using points from sign-up bonuses. But forget the dollar value of the pass, to me it’s the flexibility of being able to fly to so many different destinations for free with a partner that makes the pass so valuable. It’s saved us hundreds of dollars over the past couple of years since all you have to do is pay fees, which for domestic travel, add up to only about $6.

5/24

These cards are all subject to Chase’s 5/24 rule, so if you’ve opened 5 or more credit cards within the past 24 months, you can expect denials. For that reason, if you’re under 5/24 and value domestic travel, these credit cards really are no-brainers.

Get matched

Also, if you recently applied and got approved for these cards then you might want to secure message Chase to inquire about getting matched to these higher offers. Chase is very good about matching offers, especially for the Southwest cards.

Which card is the best to get?

There are three different Southwest credit cards that you can use: 2 personal and 1 business. (The Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards® Plus Business Card was discontinued last year.)

The three credit cards are listed below along with a few of their key benefits:

Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards® Premier Card

Southwest Premier Card

  • $99 Annual fee
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 6,000 anniversary points
  • Earn 1,500 Tier-Qualifying Points for every $10,000 in purchases, up to 15,000 Tier-Qualifying Points each calendar year
  • Best sign-up bonus: 60,000 Rapid Rewards

Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards® Plus Card

Southwest Plus Card

  • $69 Annual fee
  • 3,000 anniversary points
  • Best sign-up bonus: 50,000 Rapid Rewards

 Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Card

Southwest Premier Business Card

  • $99 Annual fee
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 6,000 anniversary points
  • Earn 1,500 Tier-Qualifying Points for every $10,000 in purchases, up to 15,000 Tier-Qualifying Points each calendar year
  • Best sign-up bonus: 50,000 Rapid Rewards

Unless you really plan on putting a lot of spend on your Southwest cards to earn credits toward A-List status or really need a card with no foreign transaction fees, I don’t think there’s a huge difference between these cards. The annual fee for the Premier is $30 more than the Plus but you get 3,000 additional Rapid Rewards each anniversary which provide you with more more than $30 worth of Southwest travel, so paying the higher annual fee should not be a major deterrent for many people.

Is this the best time to apply?

The Southwest Companion Pass will be good for two calendar years, so if you earned the sign-up bonuses on two of these cards in the next three months, you’d only have a little over one year to use your Companion Pass, which greatly diminishes the value of the Companion Pass.

This is why a lot of people will wait to apply until around mid-October to apply. If you applied for the Southwest cards in mid-October, you should be able to meet your minimum spend requirement: 1) after the new year and 2) during the billing cycle that closes in January, which means you’d be guaranteed the full two years to use the pass.

This can be a risky method because sometimes your Rapid Rewards hit your account early (before the new year) which can sabotage your plans. Thus, you should only attempt this route if you really know what you’re doing. If you’re worried about cutting it close, then you can always wait until November or December to apply.

Of course, the risk of waiting until October is that the 60K sign-up bonuses might not be available come October (I would bet on the 60K offer being reduced before October but you never know). These 60K offers are coming and going much more frequently than in the past so I’d bet on the offer returning.

Personally, I would wait until October to see if these bonuses are still around because I’d rather have the Companion Pass for two whole years than one year. There’s a risk the bonuses could drop all the way down to somewhere around 30,000 miles each but it’s often not hard to find links for the 50,000 offers. If it comes down to doing a little bit more legwork to earn the Companion Pass versus taking the easy road but losing out on a year of the Companion Pass, I’d take the former every time.

 Cover Photo by Pieter van Marion

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