You Need More Wyndham Hotel Points for the Southwest Companion Pass

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Transferring Wyndham hotel points to Southwest was a good way to get the extra Companion Pass points needed for the Southwest Companion Pass.  But that has changed.

You Need More Wyndham Hotel Points For The Southwest Companion Pass

You Now Need More Wyndham Points to Transfer to Southwest Companion Pass Points

The New Transfer Rates

Wyndham Hotels includes Baymont InnDays InnHawthorne SuitesHoward JohnsonKnights InnMicrotelRamada Super 8TravelodgeWingateWyndham Hotels & ResortsWyndham Garden, and Wyndham Grand Collection.

Previously, you got 2,400 Southwest points for every 8,000 Wyndham hotel points.  That’s 0.3 Southwest points for 1 Wyndham hotel point.

But now you get only 1,200 Southwest points for every 6,000 Wyndham hotel points.  This is 0.2 Southwest points for 1,200 Wyndham hotel points.

You Need More Wyndham Hotel Points For The Southwest Companion Pass

Wyndham Points Now Transfer to Airline Miles at a Rate of 0.2 Southwest Points for 1 Wyndham Hotel Point

Why This is Bad News

This makes it harder to transfer points to Southwest Airlines and earn the Southwest Companion Pass.

What is the Southwest Companion Pass?

The Southwest Companion Pass is my favorite travel perk and is the number 1 offer on my Hot Deals list when the sign-up bonus is 50,000 points (which it isn’t currently).

You Need More Wyndham Hotel Points For The Southwest Companion Pass

The Southwest Companion Pass is My Favorite Travel Perk!

Why?  Because it lets a companion fly with you for free whenever you fly on Southwest.  And it doesn’t matter if you pay for your flight with points or cash – your companion flies free (~$10 in taxes and fees) either way!

How do I Earn the Companion Pass?

You have to earn 110,000 Companion Pass qualifying points within one calendar year (January 1 to December 31) to get the Companion Pass.  And the 50,000 point (when available) sign-up bonus from the credit cards count towards the Companion Pass.

See these 8 easy steps to get the Southwest Companion Pass.

How do I get the Extra Points?

Even if you signed up for the Southwest Credit Cards, you would still need ~6,000 extra points for the Southwest Companion Pass.

In my experience, you can transfer hotel points such as Hyatt or Choice hotel points to Southwest.  And the transfer does count as Companion Pass points.  Of course, this could change at any time.

Previously, 8,000 Wyndham points converted to 2,400 Southwest points.  So you would have needed 24,000 Wyndham points to get 7,200 Southwest Companion Pass points.  You could have bought these points for ~$264.

But you now need 30,000 Wyndham hotel points to get 6,000 Southwest points.  And these 30,000 Wyndham hotel points cost $330.  

You Need More Wyndham Hotel Points For The Southwest Companion Pass

You Need 30,000 Wyndham Hotel Points to get 6,000 Companion Pass Points

Note that Wyndham does have a 20% bonus on buying Wyndham hotel points up to March 31, 2014.  But you’re still paying more than what it used to cost!

Additional Ways to Earn Points Toward The Southwest Companion Pass

Fortunately, there are actually a number of ways to earn points toward the Companion Pass.

The best way is to use Choice hotel points.  6,000 Choice hotel points convert to 1,800 Southwest points.

You can buy Choice points for $11 per 1,000 points, but are limited to 20,000 Choice hotel points per year.

So you’d spend $198 to buy 18,000 Choice points (points are transferable only in multiples of 6,000) to get 5,400 Southwest Airline points.  

Bottom Line

Wyndham’s point devaluation has made it more expensive to earn the Southwest Companion Pass by transferring Wyndham points.

But using Wyndham points wasn’t the best way to buy points toward the Companion Pass unless you bought them at a big discount in the once-a-year Daily Getaways.  It is still cheaper to buy Choice hotel points and transfer them to Southwest.

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18 responses to “You Need More Wyndham Hotel Points for the Southwest Companion Pass

  1. I love reading about the companion pass! I didn’t know any transfers would count towards the companion pass. If Hyatt works on a 1:1 basis, does that mean I can shift Ultimate Rewards to Hyatt and then to Southwest towards the pass?

  2. The Wyndham Rewards credit card will give you 12 K points for no annual fee or 30 K for a $69 fee. This is a Barclay’s property and they’ve always used Trans Union’s credit file for my past apps.

    • @Mark Freeman – You lose about half your Hyatt points when you transfer the to Southwest. But they do currently count towards the Companion Pass.

      @Vic – That’s true, but they have become tougher to get approvals from. I’d rather get the Barclays Arrival instead of the Wyndham card.

  3. I have a Diners Club MasterCard, which will convert 7,500 DC points to 6,000 Southwest points. Does this sound like a reasonable way to get the extra points needed for the Southwest Companion pass? Or should I convert my DC points to Choice points, then transfer the Choice points to Southwes?

  4. Wow, this is too bad. I used them for the SW pass. That was a sweet easy low cost way to top off the companion pass. Good to know for the future!

  5. Wyndham Points are the Most Difficult points to get – aside from getting a new card. And their points expire after 4 years (or after 18 mo of inactivity)– and there’s no way to recapture them.
    AND – if you happen to get a spouse card – all the points spent on that card go to Spouses account, so your points end up getting split between accounts (which is why I have a point-expiration problem occasionally).
    This seems like a moot point, but it’s amazing how fast time moves if you don’t happen to stay at their places much. Wyndham has some very nice hotels – but they also have a lot of older not-so-nice hotels where I feel like I need to inspect the sheets before renting the room – older Travelodge, Ramada, Super 8, Howard Johnson properties. They are priced cheap with $$ – but points are often ridiculous so I try to save them for better properties. Example = Knights Inn (Ft Smith, AK) = $45 or 14K points. What would you choose?!

  6. How often can you churn the Wyndham cards?
    Anyone with any experience?

  7. Folks,
    Don’t limit yourself, why you have to STUCK in this hotel points conversion, it’s too expensive.
    1)at, Buy one $3K AMEX GiftCard by SW personal card, another $3K by Biz card, right now 3% cash back [Ends in 4 days], usually 2% cash back. Sign-up AMEX first 3 months shipping free promotion. Code: EMSVCA for NO purchase fee thru. 3/31/2014 [you’ll get the Code once your order has been approved].
    2)Load the AMEX GC onto your AMEX Target card ($3 fee per loading $1K at Target). If you don’t have the AMEX Target card then
    3)Get the AMEX Target card, Max. 2 cards per person;
    4) Withdraw the cash: only $1.25 ATM fee at Costco. $3 (first $400/each month free) by AMEX.
    Your cash back is MORE than all the fees (assume you sign-up the first 3 months free shipping promotion). It takes a little wait to get your cash back, but eventually you get $$ back.

  8. Chase and AMEX cards are safe for online GiftCard purchase, NOT cash advance.
    Happy traveling!

  9. P.S.:
    SW Personal card to buy $3K AMEX Personal GC (Limit: $5K per 14 days);
    SW BIZ card to buy $3K AMEX BIZ GC (Limit: 75000/months).

  10. Correction: For AMEX BIZ, limit is $75000/month.

  11. If the change my companion three times will i get a three new different companion pass card each time with different names?

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  15. Bad news – it looks like Wyndham points are no longer transferrable to directly to Southwest