ADVERTISER DISCLOSURE: DaddyTravelsNow is part of an affiliate sales network and receives compensation for sending traffic to partner sites, such as MileValue.com This compensation may impact how and where links appear on this site. This site does not include all financial companies or all available financial offers.
When you’ve earned a companion pass, you pay for the full fare + fees for yourself
Your designated companion only pays the fees.
Tickets can be paid in cash or purchased using points.
There are no blackout dates
You could use this as many times as you want
As long as there are open seats, you could use CP
Good for domestic (yes, Hawaii), and international flights (yes, not just the US – Mexico (Cancun, Cabo, Puerto Vallarta, etc), Belize, Costa Rica, Grand Cayman, Montego Bay, Cuba, Turks & Caicos, etc.
You have to check in and fly with your companion
A designated companion’s reservation is NOT a purchased flight, therefore another CP reservation cannot be purchased from it.
So how do you earn the Southwest Companion Pass
There are a couple of ways to earn SWCP:
Fly 100 qualifying one-way flights with SW in one calendar year
How many of you do this? I bet, not many,
Earn 125,000 qualifying points
This is what we’re going to talk about
For many of us who do not fly Southwest that often, earning 125,000 points is the strategy. And you’ve got to time it properly. So how will you earn 125K? You guessed it…..credit cards. (this will be discussed further below)
Sample SWCP cash booking
You pay $200 + $11.20 in taxes/fees = round trip to LA to Kauai
You companion only pays $11.20 taxes/fees
Sample SWCP points booking
You pay 12,000 points + $11.20 taxes/fees = round trip to LA to Kauai
Your companion only pays 0 points + $11.20 taxes/fees
NOTE: Points earned with Southwest or with Chase Ultimate Rewards transferred to SW will work.
How long is the SWCP good for
Picking your companion
Which credit cards to sign up for
Open a Southwest Business Credit Card AND one of the Southwest Personal Credit Cards. The combination of points you earn with these credit cards could be your ticket to SWCP. Remember you will need 125K points, so when you begin shopping for the right set of cards, make sure you get to 125K. In some cases, applying for two cards will get you at 120K, but once you add the points from meeting your minimum spend, then you could be well over 125K.
Strategy: Apply for 1 SW personal and 1 SW business card, OR apply for 2 SW business credit cards.
Apply for the business card first
Also, it’s important to apply for the business card FIRST. Those are sometimes harder to get approval. You don’t want to burn a 5/24 slot on the personal card if it turns out that Chase won’t approve the business card application.
Do I apply for the SW card now?
Don’t rush in applying and meeting the spend quickly
Your Southwest business and personal credit card options
PERSONAL CREDIT CARDS
- Earn 40,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open
- Annual fee $69
New Earning Rates
3,000 anniversary points each year.
Earn 2X points on Southwest® purchases, local transit and commuting, including rideshare, Internet, cable, phone services, and select streaming.
Earn 1X points per $1 spent on all other purchases
Earn 40,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open.
- Annual Fee $99
New Earning Rates
6,000 anniversary points each year.
Earn 3X points on Southwest® purchases.
Earn 2X points on local transit and commuting, including rideshare.
Earn 2X points on internet, cable, phone services, and select streaming.
2 EarlyBird Check-In® each year.
- NO Foreign Transaction Fees
- Earn 40,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open. .
- Annual fee $149
- New Earning Rates
- 7,500 anniversary points each year.
- Earn 3X points on Southwest® purchases.
- Earn 2X points on local transit and commuting, including rideshare.
- Earn 2X points on internet, cable, phone services, and select streaming.
- Get $75 Southwest® travel credit each year.
- Get 4 Upgraded Boardings per year when available.
- No foreign transaction fees
BUSINESS CREDIT CARDS
- Earn 80,000 points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
- Annual Fee – $199
- Additional perks
- 9,000 bonus points after your Cardmember anniversary.
- Earn 4X points on Southwest® purchases.
- Earn 3X on Rapid Rewards hotel and car partners
- 2X points on social media and search engine advertising, internet, cable, and phone services and rideshare.
- 1x on all other purchases
- 4 Upgraded Boardings per year when available.
- $75 Southwest travel credit each year
- Global Entry or TSA Precheck® Fee Credit.
- Earn 60,000 points when you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
- Annual Fee – $99
- Additional perks
- 6,000 bonus points after your Cardmember anniversary.
- Earn 3X points on Southwest Airlines® purchases.
- Earn 2X points on Rapid Rewards® hotel and car partners.
- Earn 2X points on rideshare.
- 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
- 2 EarlyBird Check-In® each year.
- Earn unlimited tier qualifying points towards A-List status.
The strategy that won’t work
Chase had changed the rules when it comes to applying for the personal credit cards. This applies to these 3 personal cards:
- Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card
- Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card
- Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card
To earn a bonus with Southwest personal cards, you have to meet the following statements:
- Have not earned a bonus on another Southwest personal card in the past 24 months
- Do not currently have a Southwest personal credit card
So if your plan was to open up two new Southwest personal credit cards to earn a Companion Pass, that plan won’t work
Get 2 business credit cards or 1 business and 1 personal
You could, however, sign up for two Southwest Airlines Business Credit cards. You could have one or two of the business credit cards, and still apply for a Southwest personal credit card.
What about you? What are your plans? Do you have a Southwest Companion Pass? Do you plan on going for it again?
Editorial Disclosure: Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.