Southwest Airlines is a low-cost commercial airline carrier in the United States. They offer affordable flights in the US, Puerto Rica, Caribbean, Central America, and Latin America than their competitors. Now, you may be wondering how many points does it take for a Southwest Airlines award flight? Also, what are the best ways to earn those points? We will provide you the answers here.
In this travel guide prepared by Treknova, we shall take a look at how many points does it take for a Southwest Airlines award flight.
Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Program
Southwest Airlines offers its customers a program called Rapid Rewards. As the name suggests, the program allows passengers to earn rewards in the form of points each time they fly on Southwest flights. It is a revenue-based program, which means that the number of points required to book a ticket closely relates to the price you would pay when using cash for purchases. In other words, if the cash price goes up, then the number of points to purchase that ticket will also increase. Because Rapid Rewards is revenue-based, if there is a seat available on a flight, you can use either cash or points to book that last seat.
Although Southwest Airlines only offers one cabin of service, which is the Economy cabin, however, they do offer tickets at three distinct price points. Within these three categories of tickets, the prices will vary based on time of year, demand, and distance.
How to Earn Rapid Rewards Points
You can earn Rapid Rewards points when you fly frequently on Southwest Airlines flights and through its partners as well.
There are basically three types of fares that offer different points on each dollar you spend when purchasing your Southwest flight ticket. These are:
- Business Select
- Wanna Get Away
(a) Business Select Fare
Business Select tickets are the premium tickets that Southwest Airlines offers to customers. Not only do you earn 12 points per $1 spent, you will also receive priority boarding i.e., boarding position 1 through 15 and a coupon for a free drink during your flight.
(b) Anytime Fare
Anytime tickets are mid-level price tickets that you can purchase at any time. This includes minutes before the flight boards, assuming that there are seats available. These tickets do not offer any additional benefits other than the ability to earn 10 points per $1 spent instead of 6 points.
(c) Wanna Get Away Fare
Wanna Get Away tickets are the most budget-friendly flights that Southwest offers to customers. Southwest airlines customer support team is the best. You may purchase these low price tickets 14 days or more in advance of your departure date. To redeem Southwest Rapid Rewards points for a Wanna Get Away ticket, you will need approximately 70 points per $1 of airfare. When paying cash for a Wanna Get Away ticket, you will earn 6 points per $1 of airfare.
The Business Select fare type will award you 12 points per dollar for a single base fare. The Anytime fare type will award you 10 points per dollar for a single base fare. Lastly, the Wanna Get Away fare type will award you only 6 points per dollar for a single base fare. So, if you multiply the points with the price of the base fare, you get the total points earned.
Thus, out of the three fare types, the Business Select fares earn the most points per dollar than the other two. With the Rapid Rewards program, you will be earning rewards fast. Whether you are flying, staying at your favourite hotel, or simply grabbing a snack to eat, you will earn points for it, too. You can also earn rewards faster through the Rapid Rewards Points Center, by purchasing the points you need or sharing your points with family and friends to help them toward earning rewards. Better start thinking about where to take your reward flight because you will earn it before you know it.
When paying cash, you should pick the lowest cost option, which is Wanna Get Away fares. But, if you are keen on earning A-List status or want to earn the most points from your flight, then Southwest airlines reservation a Business Select ticket is preferable.
Other Costs When Booking a Southwest Flight? Southwest Airlines Award Flight
When you book a Southwest flight to fly within the United States, you are also required to pay a fee of $5.60 each way for each ticket to the Federal Government. This each way fee is mandatory and cannot be avoided. Also, when redeeming your Southwest Rapid Rewards points for international flights, additional fees may apply.
If you do not redeem for a Business Select flight, you can pay $15 each way per person to receive Early Bird boarding privileges. There is, however, no guarantee how early you will board, but you will receive automatic check-in 36 hours before boarding begins. This means you will beat out anyone trying to check-in once the normal 24-hour window opens to print out boarding passes. Though it is a little controversial, but if you book each person’s tickets separately, you can purchase Early Bird for only one person, and have them save seats for the rest of your travelling companions.
Tips on the Best Ways to Earn Southwest Rapid Rewards Points
There is no doubt that you have the chances of earning Southwest Rapid Rewards points when flying on Southwest Airlines. However, the easiest and quickest way to earn these reward points is by applying for either the personal or business category of the Chase Southwest Rapid Rewards credit card. You will earn 50,000 bonus points with the personal and 60,000 bonus points with the business category after meeting the minimum spend requirements.
Additionally, there are also several other ways through which you can earn Southwest Rapid Rewards points. Some of these include renting a car or booking a hotel through the Southwest Airlines website. Furthermore, you can also shop online through their portal. Another way is to sign up for their Dining Rewards program, where you can earn points for dining at a participating restaurant, and when you answer a couple of questions about your experience.
When redeeming a free flight on Southwest Airlines, the number of points that you earn may vary depending upon the cash price of the flight. This is unlike other airlines, where they charge 25,000 (40,233.6 km) to 35,000 miles (56,327.04 km) for a domestic flight.
Thus, this makes Southwest Airlines one of the best options for redeeming reward points when booking low-cost flights. You can earn additional Southwest reward points by using their credit card, shopping through their portal or dining at their partner retails. You can also book hotels and rental cars with their partners to get you closer to your next free Southwest flight.