by Lyle Daly | Aug. 7, 2020
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These new sign-up bonuses add hundreds of dollars in value to each card.
Southwest and Chase have several co-branded credit cards, and these cards just got much better for new customers. Each consumer credit card is offering a new sign-up bonus that gives you a lot more Southwest Rapid Rewards points. Not only does that mean more points for booking flights, it also puts you closer to earning a Southwest Companion Pass.
Since these are limited-time offers, you'll need to apply in short order if you want to take advantage. Here's how many points you can earn and the rules for qualifying.
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The new sign-up bonus offer is 65,000 Rapid Rewards points for spending $2,000 on purchases in the first three months. It's available with the following Southwest credit cards:
There's no clear end date listed for this offer. But here's a good tip: this bonus started as a referral offer, and that offer extended through Sept. 21, 2020. So, absent further info, it makes sense to apply by then.
The previous standard sign-up bonus for these cards is 40,000 points for spending $1,000 in three months. An extra 25,000 points makes each bonus significantly more valuable. Although the new offer has a larger spending minimum of $2,000 in three months, that's an affordable amount for many consumers.
Rapid Rewards points from credit card sign-up bonuses are considered qualifying points toward the Southwest Companion Pass. Since that requires you to earn at least 125,000 qualifying points in a calendar year, this bonus will have you more than halfway there.
Southwest Rapid Rewards points are worth about $0.015 per point. Unlike most other types of airline miles, Southwest's points are based on the cash price of the ticket, so you get a fairly consistent value no matter what you book.
Using that value, the 65,000-point sign-up bonus is worth about $975. That's extremely impressive, and compares favorably to the best sign-up bonuses, especially considering the affordable annual fees with Southwest's credit cards.
This offer is only available for new cardholders. You're eligible if you don't currently have a Southwest Rapid Rewards® Credit Card and you have not received a sign-up bonus with any of those cards in the last 24 months. Note that this rule does not apply to business or employee credit card products.
Because Chase is the card issuer, the Chase 5/24 rule is in effect for your application. That means you'll likely only be approved if you've opened fewer than five credit cards in the last 24 months.
These Southwest cards are aimed at consumers with a good credit score. For the best odds of approval, you should have a FICO® Score of at least 670.
Considering that travel still isn't back to normal from the coronavirus pandemic, it may sound strange to say there's no better time to apply for an airline credit card. But a 65,000-point offer is quite a bit more than what these travel credit cards usually give you, and you can only get this offer for a limited time.
If you travel with Southwest much, then you should consider getting one of its credit cards. Whether you book a flight later this year or wait longer, you'll have a big balance of points to help cover the cost.
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