Disclosure: We get a commission for links on the blog. You don’t have to use our links, but we’re very grateful when you do. American Express, Barclaycard, Chase, and US Bank are Million Mile Secrets advertising partners. Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or endorsed by our partners. Here’s our Advertiser Disclosure.
Starting today, you can book paid and award flights on Southwest through January 4, 2017.
Here’s how to get Big Travel on Southwest along with ways to earn more Southwest points!
Book a Trip This Winter With Southwest
Today, Southwest has opened its schedule so you can book flights through January 4, 2017.
Most airlines open their schedules ~11 months to 1 year in advance. But Southwest flights are only available to book ~6 to 8 months ahead of time.
So if you’ve been waiting to plan a holiday getaway with Southwest, you can book your tickets now!
It’s always a good idea to book your Southwest tickets as far in advance as possible, especially during busy travel times like the holidays. Because if your plans change (or the price of your ticket drops), you can change or cancel your flight without penalty.
Plus, everyone gets 2 free checked bags!
My Favorite Travel Deal: The Southwest Companion Pass
To get the Southwest Companion Pass you must earn 110,000 Southwest points in a calendar year. Then a friend or family member can fly with you for (almost) free for up to 2 years!
This can save you thousands of dollars!
Read my post about tricks for quickly earning the additional points you’ll need for the Companion Pass. But be sure to avoid these 3 common mistakes!
Need More Southwest Points?
The quickest way to earn (almost) enough Southwest points for the Companion Pass is with the sign-up bonuses from the Chase Southwest credit cards.
Southwest Credit Cards
You can quickly earn lots of Southwest points with the Chase Southwest cards. All 3 versions of the Southwest card are currently offering 50,000 Southwest points when you meet the minimum spending.
Other benefits that come with these cards include:
- 2 points per $1 you spend on Southwest flights and certain hotel and car rental partners
- 1 points per $1 you spend on everything else
- 6,000 Southwest bonus points (Premier cards) or 3,000 bonus points (Plus card) on your card anniversary each year
- No foreign transaction fees
The $99 annual fee for the Premier cards ($69 for the Plus card) is NOT waived the 1st year.
There are no blackout dates when you redeem points on Southwest, so as long as there are seats available for sale, you can use your points!
Transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards Points
You can transfer the Chase Ultimate Rewards points you earn from cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred and Chase Ink Plus directly to Southwest at a 1:1 ratio. But they will NOT count towards the Southwest Companion Pass.
Southwest’s schedule is now open through January 4, 2017.
It’s a good idea to book before prices go up or seats sell-out, especially during the busy holiday season. Because if your plans change, you change or cancel your flight without penalty.
And if you have the Southwest Companion Pass, a friend or family member can join you for (almost) free anytime you fly Southwest for up to 2 years!
Let me know if you plan a holiday trip!
* If you liked this post, why don’t you join the 20,000+ readers who have signed-up to receive free blog posts via email (only 1 email per day!) or in an RSS reader …because then you’ll never miss another update!