The Holy Grail of Travel Rewards

travel hacking Dec 17, 2021

I want to give you an introduction to the most sought after travel reward out there.

It's so sought after that I've heard it called the "holy grail" of travel rewards.

What is it, you may ask?

The Southwest Airlines Companion Pass.

Everyone wants one, but they can be tricky to get.

In case you don't know what it is, the Southwest Companion Pass allows you to take a companion for free on as many Southwest flights as you'd like during the duration of the pass.

It's basically a free ticket anytime you fly for someone to join you.

The way you typically get the Companion Pass is by "flying 100 qualifying one-way flights or earning 125,000 qualifying points in a calendar year." That's straight off the Southwest website.

If you do one of these two things, you'll earn a Companion Pass "for the following full calendar year, plus the remainder of the year in which you earned it."

To most people, this seems impossible.

You'd have to fly nearly 10 times per month to hit the 100 flight requirement or put $125,000 in spend on one of the Southwest credit cards to meet the second requirement. And you'd have to do one of those in the course of a year. Not likely, right?

And for those that can do it, they likely won't hit the requirement until late in the year, giving them the Companion Pass for a few weeks/months of that year & then the following year (basically having it for only about a year before it expires).

You're probably thinking, "Ok, so what hope do I have of getting it?"

I've got good news. There's a "hack" that allows you to not only get the Companion Pass, but to get it for almost 2 years, rather than the typical 1 year.

I'm not kidding.

Here's the scoop.

Believe it or not, the welcome bonuses on the Southwest credit cards count toward the 125,000 qualifying points.

Often the Southwest personal cards will have welcome bonuses between 40,000-60,000 points & the Southwest business cards will have welcome bonuses between 60,000-80,000 points. When I last applied for these cards, the personal card was 50,000 points & the business card was 80,000 points. Let's use those numbers for this example.

If those welcome bonus points apply to the 125,000 needed, then 80,000 + 50,000 = 130,000 points. Ding, ding!

Just hitting those 2 welcome bonuses would earn me the Companion Pass for the rest of the year & all of the following year.

But it gets better.

If you can plan to get the cards right at the beginning of the year & hit the bonuses in January or February, you'd have the Companion Pass the rest of that year & all of the following year (nearly 2 full years)!

This is like hitting the travel rewards lottery!

That's why the month you apply for these cards is so important because if you wait until later in the year, you forfeit so many months you could've had the pass if you earned it at the beginning of the year.

Since we are approaching the end of the year, consider planning for the Companion Pass soon. In fact, many of us will apply for the cards in November/December so we're ready to earn the bonus in January when the new year begins. But, I'll warn you, you don't want to hit that bonus until after January 1 or all of the points you earn will not be credited toward a Companion Pass for the next 2 years.

If you choose to apply for one of the Southwest cards, will you use my referral link here? It will give my wife extra points for sending you. Then, once you get the card, you can refer others & earn extra points as well. She thanks you ahead of time!! ;) Here's the link: Click Here

More on the Southwest Companion Pass in the Travel Hacking Course if you're interested! One student said, "Lesson 6 in the Travel Hacking Course [on the Companion Pass] is worth the entire cost of the course alone."


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