With the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card, you will earn 40,000 points after sending $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months. Another great benefit is you will receive an additional 3,000 bonus points after your card member anniversary.
It earns 2 miles per $1 spent with Southwest Airlines that can be redeemed for flights, hotels, gift cards and other rewards. Cardholders get access to many travel and purchase benefits and more. However, if you’re traveling outside the U.S., this card charges a foreign transaction fee.
If you want to find out more about what unique features this card has to offer, continue reading below.
Table of Contents
- 1 Types of Southwest Rapid Rewards Cards
- 2 Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Credit Card Summary
- 3 Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus
- 4 Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus- Top Features
- 5 Earning & Redeeming Rapid Reward Points
- 6 Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Cardholder Benefits
- 7 Author’s Verdict
- 8 Alternative Credit Cards Options
Types of Southwest Rapid Rewards Cards
The Southwest Rapid Rewards Program has three different version of credit cards: Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Credit Card, Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business Credit Card, Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Credit Card, and Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Credit Card.
|Card Name||Bonus||Benefits||Annual Fee|
|Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Credit Card||60,000 bonus points after spending $2,000 in first 3 months.
6,000 anniversary bonus points ($90 value).
|Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business Credit Card||60,000 bonus points after spending $3,000 in first 3 months.
6,000 anniversary bonus points ($90 value).
|Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Credit Card||60,000 bonus points after spending $2,000 in first 3 months.
3,000 anniversary bonus points ($45 value).
|Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Credit Card||60,000 bonus point after spending $2,000 in first 3 months.
7,500 anniversary bonus points ($112 value).
Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Credit Card Summary
With the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card:
• Earn 40,000 points after sending $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months
• Enjoy 3,000 bonus points after your Cardmember anniversary.
• 2x points per $1 spent on Southwest® purchases & Rapid Rewards® hotel/car rental partner purchases; 1x point on all other purchases.
• All points earned with either card count towards Companion Pass
• Redeem your points for flights, hotel stays, gift cards, access to events and more
Learn More About This Card Here
Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus
There are many ways to go about this. Down below are several options to acquiring these points.
• Plastiq - Using Plastiq allows you to pay for your personal expenses such as rent, tuition, mortgage, auto lease etc. Although they charge a 2.5% processing fee for using your credit card, this will contribute to the card bonus that you will receive. There is also a referral program that allows you to earn "Free-Free Dollars" that goes towards processing fees as well.
• Funding Checking Accounts - When it comes to funding a checking account, opening your initial deposit with a credit card is the usual way to go about it. However, if you want to have more opportunities, you should open a checking account that offers a sign-up bonus. This allows you to work towards bonuses from not one but two different sources instead. Banks like Chase, Huntington Bank, TD Bank and BBVA offers credit card funding, and for your opening deposit, you can often fund anywhere from $50-$1000 with a credit card, depending on what bank offers it.
• Gift Card Purchases With Using a Credit Card - Another way to acquire the bonus is using your credit card to purchase gift cards. Buying a a gift card or an individual merchant card typically do not require a purchase fee and are used towards leisure, so gift cards are ideal. However, gift cards such as a Visa or American Express do incur purchase fees because they can be spent anywhere, but gift cards that are specifically for a certain online shopping site such as Amazon or eBay don't.
As for a Citi Credit Card, you should call customer service and ask them to lower your Cash Advance limit to $0 before making any purchases because Citi tends to read gift card purchases as a Cash Advance.
Ideally, you should do this with any card just to be safe. Lastly, there is such thing as a discounted gift card which can be purchased on Raise or eBay. If you use a credit card often for everyday purchases, it can build your credit score that will contribute towards paying for things such as bills and taxes.
Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus- Top Features
Transfarency is term coined by Southwest and their motto is “low fares, no hidden fees,” meaning that customers are treated honestly and fairly. Some perks of flying with Southwest are:
- First and second checked bags requires no fee (weight and size limits apply)
- No change fee (Fare differences may apply)
3,000 Rapid Rewards points are automatically added to your card if you renew every year as an anniversary bonus.
Earning & Redeeming Rapid Reward Points
Rapid Rewards Plus cardholders earn 2 points per $1 spent on Southwest purchases and Rapid Rewards Hotel and Car Rental Partner purchases. These include purchases of airfare, vacation packages, in-flight entertainment, in-flight refreshments, and other incidentals. They must be made directly with the airline and not through a third-party booking site. Purchases with hotel and rental car partners, including Hertz and Starwood, also earn 2 points per $1 spent.
All other purchases net 1 point per $1 spent. As long as your account remains open and in good standing, your points never expire. In addition, you can earn an unlimited amount of points.
Rapid Rewards points can be redeemed for free Southwest Airlines flights with no blackout dates or seat restrictions. Redemption amounts vary by flight time, season, date and day of the week, destination, distance, and other factors. However, redemptions always require at least 5,000 points for one-way flights and 10,000 for round-trip flights.
Points can be worth anywhere from $0.015 up to $0.02 apiece for certain flights. Short-haul flights offer better value, but the number of points required to redeem a particular flight frequently vary.
You can also redeem for merchandise, experiences, rental cars, and gift cards, through Southwest More Rewards. However, you’ll get better value out of your points redeeming for flights.
Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Cardholder Benefits
The Rapid Rewards Plus card has benefits including baggage delay insurance, extended warranty protection, lost luggage reimbursement and purchase protection. Here are some other benefits this card offers:
Card member Anniversary Bonus: Each year your account remains open and in good standing, you get 3,000 bonus points on your card member anniversary. You can also earn extra points by booking car rentals and hotels through the Rapid Rewards program, or using the Rapid Rewards Shopping portal.
Companion Pass Status: Companion Pass status is the highest status level within Southwest Airlines’ frequent flyer program. Travelers must accumulate at least 110,000 Tier Qualifying Points (Rapid Rewards points earned through cash fare and credit card purchases, but not sign-up bonuses or partner purchases) or complete at least 100 one-way Southwest Airlines segments in a calendar year to get this this status.
You can bring a companion traveler on any Southwest flight at no additional fare charge. However, taxes and security fees do still apply. You can use this benefit as much as you want, but you can’t travel with more than one companion per flight.
Bags Fly Free: Rapid Rewards Plus cardholders always get their first and second checked bags free. This is great if you’re taking a longer trip or one that requires lots of luggage.
No Change Fees: Southwest Airlines doesn’t impose change fees if you decide to alter your reward flight’s time, date, or even destination after your initial booking. You’re just responsible for the cost difference in dollars or points, if any.
With no blackout dates and unlimited points that never expire, the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card is great choice for those who travel domestic frequently. Plus, you’ll be awarded with 3,000 anniversary bonus points after the anniversary date each year. Additionally, with Southwest you’ll be able to check in 2 free bags when traveling.
This is a great perk since the cost of checked bags aren’t cheap and the cost can add up depending on the weight of your luggage(s). You may even find it valuable being able to easily transfer points from other credit card partners too. These are just some benefits that might offset the annual fee for you. Provide feedback in the comment section below by telling us your thoughts and experience with this card.
Alternative Credit Cards Options
If you aren’t particularly a Southwest customer, then there are other alternatives to the Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Credit Card. These are: the Barclaycard Arrival Plus®World Elite Mastercard® , Chase Sapphire Preferred Card and Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
Lower Annual Fee Alternatives
The annual fee for Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite Mastercard® is not only lower, but also offers a sign-up bonus and rewards and do not have an airline or hotel restrictions.
The annual fee for the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is also lower and you can utilize the 1:1 transfer ratio by moving points to another Chase card through partnered airlines or hotels.
With the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card:
• Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spending $4,000 in the first 3 months. (That's $750 toward travel when redeeming via Chase Ultimate Rewards®)
• Named "Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption" by Kiplinger's Personal Finance, June 2018
• Earn 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide
• Earn 1X point per dollar spent on all other purchases outside of the travel & dining category
• No foreign transaction fees to worry about
• You're able to get 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
• Your points get 25% more value when redeeming for airfare, car rentals, cruises, & hotels, via Chase Ultimate Rewards.
• There are no blackout dates or travel restrictions - just as long as there's available seating on the flight - you're able to book via Chase Ultimate Rewards
The annual fee for the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card is yet again lower but has a flat 2% rate rewards rate concerning all purchases. Your rewards are applied as a statement credit on travel expenses.
With the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Card:
• Enjoy a one-time bonus of 50,000 miles once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $500 in travel
• Earn 2X miles on every purchase, every day. Plus earn 10X miles on thousands of hotels, through January 2020; learn more at hotels.com/venture
• Named ‘The Best Travel Card' by CNBC, 2018
• Receive up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✔®
• Fly any airline, stay at any hotel, anytime; no blackout dates. Plus transfer your miles to over 12 leading travel loyalty programs
• Miles won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how many you can earn
• No foreign transaction fees
• $0 intro annual fee for the first year; $95 after that
• Chase Bank Bonuses. Chase usually offers the most sign-up bonuses out of all the big banks. Read up and enjoy several promotions for their Checking, Savings and Business accounts.
• HSBC Bank Bonuses. HSBC has some big value offers available for their Checking accounts. Some require hefty deposits to qualify. They also have an online Savings account offering a very competitive rate.
• Huntington Bank Bonuses. Huntington has Consumer Checking and Business Checking accounts available throughout the year.
• Discover Bank Bonuses. As an online bank, Discover offers high and competitive rates on their Savings, CD, and Money Market accounts. Enjoy excellent customer service nationwide.
• TD Bank Bonuses. TD Bank consistently offers great Checking account bonuses all year long. Savings account offers are less frequently available.
|HSBC Premier Checking Member FDIC||$750 Cash||Review|
|HSBC Advance Checking Member FDIC||$350 Cash||Review|
|Huntington Asterisk-Free Checking®||$150 Cash||Review|
|Huntington 5 Checking||$200 Cash||Review|
|Chase SapphireSM Checking||60,000 Points||Review|
|Chase Total Checking® + Chase SavingsSM||$350 Cash||Review|
|Chase Premier Plus CheckingSM||$300 Cash||Review|
|Chase College CheckingSM||$100 Cash||Review|
|Chase Private Client||$1,250 Cash||Review|
|TD Bank Beyond CheckingSM||$300 Cash||Review|
|TD Bank Convenience CheckingSM||$150 Cash||Review|
|Chase Total Business Checking®||$200 Cash||Review|
|Huntington Bank Accelerated Business Checking||$500 Cash||Review|
|Huntington Bank Fast Track Business Checking||$400 Cash||Review|
|Huntington Bank Community Business Checking||$200 Cash||Review|