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I consider the Southwest Companion Pass to be the BEST deal in travel. So it’s no wonder lots of our readers are interested in it!
But the timing of how and when you earn the Companion Pass can be tricky. And Million Mile Secret Agent Veronica asked us for help:
It’s now December 2017. I have ~107,000 Southwest points and need to get to 110,000 by the end of month to earn the Southwest Companion Pass. I have 6 Southwest flights coming up, but it will still leave me ~4,000 Southwest miles short this year! HELP!
Great question, Veronica. I bet there are other folks in a similar situation!
Earning the Southwest Companion Pass
To get the Southwest Companion Pass, you need to earn 110,000 qualifying Southwest points in 1 calendar year. That means January 1 through December 31!
Companion Pass qualifying points are earned from:
- Revenue flights booked directly through Southwest
- Points earned with Southwest credit cards
- Base points earn from Southwest loyalty program partners
For example, with Southwest’s current promotion, you can earn up to 2,400 Southwest points for renting a car through Budget or Hertz. So Veronica could consider renting a car to earn the points she needs!
Being that the Companion Pass will likely save Veronica MUCH more than the cost of a car rental, paying to rent a car could be worth it! Or, she could do a good ol’ fashioned mileage run. 😉
Other Ideas for Earning Southwest Points That Count Towards the Companion Pass
Another option, if you have a Southwest credit card, is to consider using it for things like:
- Charity donations
- Prepaying bills (cell phone, internet, cable, etc.)
- Paying your mortgage or rent through a service like Plastiq
- Buying gifts to give in the future
Just remember, you’ll need to make sure your statement closes before the end of the year. That way, any purchases you make with your Southwest card will count towards this year’s points earning total. It’s easy to change your statement closing date online or by calling Chase.
And don’t forget, points transfers from 1 Southwest account to another do NOT count towards earning the Companion Pass. And neither do Chase Ultimate Rewards points transfers. So be sure to avoid these common mistakes that will NOT get you the Companion Pass!
Strategize for Next Year
Try not to cut the timing so close! It’s best to earn the 110,000 Southwest points you need for the Companion Pass by October, so you don’t have to scramble over the holidays. Because it can be a huge distraction. Plus, the sooner you earn it, the more time you have to fly nearly free with your companion! 🙂
There are only a couple more weeks left to earn the 110,000 Southwest points you need to earn in a calendar year for the Companion Pass.
If you’re just shy of the points you need, consider renting a car through a Southwest partner or doing a mileage run. Or, make purchases with a Southwest card to top-off your account. Because having the Companion Pass will save you LOTS of money!
And next time you’re out to earn the Companion Pass, make sure not to cut it too close to the wire. 😉
Good luck, Veronica! We’d love to hear how you ended up earning the extra Southwest points you needed.