Southwest Airline Credit Card Review – Southwest Airlines offers a credit card for its frequent fliers, which can also be used for car rental and hotel bookings. This is a very attractive card for fliers who spend more than $10,000 annually on flights. This card has an amazing offer called the Companion Pass in which a flier earning more than 110,000 points gets to fly with another person free for up to 2 years. This is a great travel rewards credit card.
There are 4 types of cards offered by Southwest Airlines:
- Plus card
- Rapid Rewards Premier card
- Plus Business
- Premier business
The card features are:
- $69 annual fees for the Plus cards and $99 for the Premier cards
- 16-.99-23.99% purchase APR
- 99% cash advance APR
- 3% foreign transaction fees for the Plus cards
- Chase network used for all cards
There are no tier qualifying points needed for the Plus cards but they are needed for the premier cards. The credit rating needed for all the 4 cards is Excellent ratings. This would be 720-850 FICO score.
- 40,000 Sign up points on all types of cards. This is on spending $1,000 in the first 3 months on all types of purchases
- $1 gets 2 points on Southwest purchases and Rapid Rewards hotel and car rental
- $1 gets 1 point on all other purchases
- 3,000 anniversary points for the Plus cards and 6,000 for Premier cards
- Anniversary rewards – Each year, you get 6,000 points on the day you opened the card account. This could be worth $90-95 which is good for several one-way flights
- Initial bonus – There is a 60,000 points bonus for spending over $900 in the first 3 months.
- Nil foreign transaction fees – Southwest flies to Mexico and the Caribbean
- Free bags – The airline’s motto ‘Bags Fly Free’ applies here with 2 checked bags flying free
Who needs this card?
- $10,000 a year or more spenders on airline expenses will find this card useful as one can earn tier qualification points to climb to A-list and A-list preferred rank. This gives you privileges like priority boarding, standby priority and access to the ‘Fly by’ lane.
- Business people – with the Companion Pass, a business stands to save a lot by issuing this card to its employees. There are savings on expenses for flights where the business is footing the bills.
The $99 annual fees and high APR may be a put off for some, but if you are flying a lot, this card has some very good features. The generous points rewards system makes it worthwhile to try.