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If Southwest is a convenient airline option for your family, then the Southwest credit cards that sometimes come with the 50,000 point sign-up bonuses are some of the best deals in travel. The 50,000 point offers (up from 25,000 points) are now officially back! The offer goes up and down from 50k to 25k several times a year, and there are often links out there for the 50k offer on some versions of the card almost all the time if you look around hard enough. However, no searching is required as of right now as all four versions of the card can easily be found with working 50k links. Note that you will see these marketed as “two free round trip flights”, but really it is simply 50k points that you can use however you wish.
The four versions of the card include a business and a personal version of the Plus and Premier cards. The cards are all very similar, but they are considered unique products by Chase. The main difference is that the Plus cards have a $69 annual fee and the Premier cards have a $99 annual fee. The link I officially have below is for the Premier personal card, which is a great card, but probably not the one you want to start with if this is your very first Southwest card as you can get the Plus version with a $30 lower annual fee.
Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card: 50,000 points after spending $2,000 in the first three months
You can find the other three versions of the Southwest cards here by clicking on the “Working Link for Business Card” in this Flyertalk thread. I have also seen several of the versions on the cards on the Southwest.com site.
Use the Southwest Credit Cards to Obtain Companion Pass:
One of the reasons these sign-up bonuses are one of the best deals in family travel is the Companion Pass. You need 110,000 qualifying points to earn the Companion Pass so that your designated companion can fly free with you on any Southwest operated flight whether your ticket was purchased with cash or points. The 50,000 credit card sign-up bonus have been counting for years toward the Companion Pass, so this can give you a quick jolt toward getting to 110k. The pass is good the year you earn it and all of the next year. So, if you hit 110,000 points soon you could use it for the remaining months of 2014, and then all of 2015. You will even be able to use the Companion Pass to fly to Southwest’s recently announced Caribbean destinations!
Southwest Just Devalued…So Hopefully Won’t Again For a While:
On a less exciting note, on March 31st Southwest devalued their Rapid Reward points by 15% toward Wanna Get Away fares. That is a bummer, but it hopefully means we are safe from them doing anything similar for a while. No guarantees, but generally programs don’t do two devaluations like that in rapid succession. Rapid Reward points are now worth at least 1.4 cents each toward Wanna Get Away fares, so that makes 50,000 points worth around $700 from one credit card sign-up!
I don’t yet see an end date for these offers, but since they just recently started back up I would hope they would stick around at least for a little while. I’ll keep you posted if/when I get an official end date.
Disclosure: I do receive a commission if you are approved for a credit card using one of my affiliate links. As always, thanks for your support.