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Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card

Cory Santos

| Last updated on November 13th, 2023

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card
BestCards refers to a variation of FICO Score 9, which is one of many different types of credit scores. A financial institution may use a different score when deciding whether to approve you for a credit card. Please note that the range shown here is our own estimation and not a guarantee of credit needed to be approved for any given card. Recommended Credit: Excellent / Good
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$99 Annual Fee

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card

  • 21.49% to 28.49% Variable Regular Purchase APR
  • 21.49% to 28.49% Variable Balance Transfer APR
  • 29.99% Variable Cash Advance APR

At a Glance

Frequent Southwest Airlines flyers will love the rewards they can redeem when using the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier, which grants yearly points just from being a cardmember.

  • Best Benefits
  • Rates & Fees
  • Why Should You Apply?
  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
  • 6,000 anniversary points each year.
  • Earn 3X points on Southwest® purchases.
  • Earn 2X points on local transit and commuting, including rideshare.
  • Earn 2X points on internet, cable, and phone services; select streaming.
  • 2 EarlyBird Check-In® each year.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
  • Member FDIC
  • Regular Purchase APR: 21.49% to 28.49% Variable
  • Balance Transfer APR: 21.49% to 28.49% Variable
  • Balance Transfer Transaction Fee: Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater
  • Cash Advance APR: 29.99% Variable
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 5% of the amount of each transaction, whichever is greater
  • Penalty APR: Up to 29.99% Variable
  • Annual Fee: $99
  • You travel often, especially with Southwest Airlines®
  • You make frequent in-flight purchases
  • You want the flexibility of redeeming points for flights, hotel stays, car rentals, and more
  • You regularly check bags when flying

In-Depth Review: Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card

A step above the Rapid Rewards® Plus, the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card offers essentially the same lineup of incentives.

Earn Bonus Rapid Rewards Points From the Start

New Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier cardmembers can enjoy a quality welcome bonus of 50,000 points after spending $1,000 on the card within 90 days of opening an account. That welcome bonus has a value of around $600 when booking an award flight with Southwest, making it an impressive welcome offer on its own.

But there’s more. New accounts that spend at least $3,000 on spending in the first three months of account opening also receive a 30% off promo code. Once you meet the spending minimums, you can be on the lookout for the 30% promo code in your account at within eight weeks. 

How to Earn Rewards

Additionally, cardholders earn 3X Rapid Rewards points for every dollar spent on Southwest Airlines purchases. This includes checked baggage, in-flight purchases, snacks and drinks, and more.  Even if your expenses are not exclusively with Southwest – through which you’ll earn double (2X) points from things like Rapid Rewards hotel and car partners – you’ll still be rewarded with 2X for every dollar on a range of purchases, including:

  • Local transit and commuting, including rideshares
  • Internet, cable, phone services, and select streaming

All other purchases with the card earn 1X points per dollar spent.

6,000-Point Anniversary Bonus

Where the Premier differs from the Plus and the Priority cards is in the anniversary bonus. Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier cardholders receive a 6,000-point anniversary bonus on their cardmember anniversary each year. The Priority earns 7,500 points each year.

How to Redeem Rewards

When you begin to cash in on the rewards you’ve earned with your Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Card, you’ll notice that you can turn your Rapid Rewards points into just about anything; flexible rewards redemption is a big draw with this program.

  • Travel: Once you’ve earned rewards for that dream trip you’ve been planning, you’re ready to redeem them. Points earned with the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Card can be redeemed to book or upgrade travel on Southwest. Rewards can be used to save on flights, seat upgrades, and more (including Companion Passes!). Log into your Rapid Rewards account on the Southwest® homepage, select a flight, and pay with points; the sky is the limit!
  • Hotels: With the Southwest Rapid Rewards® program, cardholders are eligible to book hotel stays with points earned from their Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Card at over 70,000 hotels across the globe.
  • Car Rentals: Renting a car often makes travel easier, as you’re able to move at your own pace, make pitstops at your leisure, and take your time enjoying your destination. Points earned with the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Card can be used towards hiring a car rental from several different rental companies.
  • Retail: Points can be redeemed with hundreds of retail partners for products, services, and even gift cards. Shop retail options, from golf balls and electronics to home goods; or, find the right gift card from brands like Amazon, iTunes, Lowes, and more to treat yourself or a friend – simply use your points to purchase!
  • Buy, Gift, or Transfer: Cardholders can use their Rapid Rewards®points for a variety of purchases; they also have the option to gift points or transfer their points to whoever they’d like, even if they are not a cardholder. All the recipient must do is enroll in the Rapid Rewards program if they have not already. Points can even be donated to pre-selected charities; Southwest has chosen several charities that can accept points as a donation.

Other Card Features

Other features of the card include no charge when checking your first two bags, no blackout dates on reward flights or seats when it comes to redeeming, no foreign transaction fees, and Visa travel protections and benefits.

Zero Fraud Liability Cardholder Inquiry Services Emergency Card Replacement
Roadside Dispatch and Auto Collision Damage Waiver Lost/Stolen Card Reporting ID Navigator from Norton

Southwest Rapid Rewards consumer Credit Card Comparison

Not sure which Rapid Rewards credit card from Chase is right for your personal needs? Here is a quick breakdown of all the personal consumer credit cards from Southwest Airlines and JP Morgan Chase:

Rapid Rewards® Plus

Rapid Rewards® Premier

Rapid Rewards® Priority
Rewards rate Earn 2X pts. on Southwest purchases, 2X pts. on internet, cable, phone services, and select streaming, and 1X on all other purchases Earn 3X pts. on Southwest purchases, 2X pts. on internet, cable, phone services, and select streaming, and 1X on all other purchases Earn 3X pts. on Southwest purchases, 2X pts. on internet, cable, phone services, and select streaming, and 1X on all other purchases
Best perk 2 EarlyBird Check-In per year. 1,500 tier qualifying points towards A-List status for every $10,000 spent 4 Upgraded Boardings per year when available
Annual fee $0 $99 $149

FAQs About Southwest Rapid Rewards

Here are some of the most commonly asked questions regarding Southwest’s Rapid Rewards loyalty program:

  • Yes. According to Southwest, you can request past flight points for up to 12 months after your flight.  To claim points for a past flight, simply log into your account, select My Account and choose the Manage tab within My Rapid Rewards.  Choose Request past points in the grey bar and enter your record locator (confirmation number) from your reservation. After verification of your flight information (up to 5 days), points will be deposited into your account.
  • Rapid Rewards Dining is a rewards program within the Rapid Rewards program. This features lets members earn points from dining with select Southwest restaurant partners.

Related Article: Dining Programs: How to Earn Airline Miles with Any Credit Card

Chase and Southwest Visa Card Ratings

How does the Chase Southwest Visa stack up? Here are a selection of expert reviews for the card, as well as an overview of JP Morgan Chase as a bank:

Should You Apply for the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card?

Overall, a great package of perks for those who find themselves frequently booking with Southwest Airlines. There are three major differences between the Rapid Rewards® Plus and the Rapid Rewards® Premier: The annual fee, cardmember anniversary bonus points, and foreign transaction fee. If you opt for the Rapid Rewards® Premier, you’ll have a $99 annual fee – $30 more than the Rapid Rewards® Plus’ $69 fee – applied to your first billing statement. However, being a Rapid Rewards® Premier cardmember nets you 6,000 bonus points each account anniversary – double the amount you’ll earn with the Rapid Rewards® Plus.

Finally, the Southwest Rapid Rewards® shines above the Plus in that you can freely use it abroad without the worry of foreign transaction fees. Even if you only fly internationally on occasion, you could potentially save a considerable amount on surcharges if you happen to make a sizable purchase.

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