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The Southwest Companion Pass has been a hot topic in the miles and points world in the last few weeks, both because the best time to earn it is as early in the year as possible, and also because of the impending change to what types of points will count towards the 110,000 points needed in a calendar year to earn the pass. As you may have heard, beginning March 31, 2017, transfers into Rapid Rewards from hotel partners like Marriott, Hyatt, and more will no longer count towards the points needed to earn the Companion Pass.
However, hotel bonus points aren’t the only non-flying route to the Southwest Companion Pass. Sign-up bonus points from the Chase Southwest co-branded credit cards have been counting for years, and are still counting as of now with no announced change to that process. There are currently three different co-branded Chase Southwest credit cards, and one of them now has an increased sign-up bonus of 60,000 points!
Via Doctor of Credit, the Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business Credit Card from Chase (not an affiliate link, information not supplied from Chase) is offering 60,000 bonus points after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of opening your account, which is higher than the normal increased level of 50,000 points.
The other two co-branded Southwest cards, the Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Credit Card and the Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Credit Card, both currently have 50,000 point sign-up bonuses after hitting the spending requirements. You could potentially get one of those and the 60,000 point business card to get you to the needed 110,000 points to earn the Companion Pass.
Alternatively, as long as you complete the transfer before the end of March 2017, you could get the 60,000 point Premier Business Southwest Card sign-up bonus and also do a Marriott Hotel + Air Package that includes 50,000 Southwest points and 7 nights in a Category 1 – 5 Marriott property for 200,000 Marriott Points, or roughly 66,667 points transferred to Marriott from SPG. Those two actions combined would be enough to get you the Southwest Companion Pass for the rest of 2017 and all of 2018.
Note that there is a $99 annual fee for the Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business Credit Card, 5/24 does seem to apply, and the terms and conditions for the credit card indicate that “This product is available to you if you do not have this card and have not received a new Cardmember bonus for this card in the past 24 months.”
Even if you aren’t interested in earning the Companion Pass, 60,000 Rapid Reward points can be worth $850 towards Southwest Wanna Get Away award travel, so this isn’t a bad offer for anyone who utilizes Southwest!