Hooray! Southwest Reverses Decision, Hotel Points Transfers Count for Companion Pass!

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Hooray!  Southwest Reverses Decision, Hotel Points Transfers Count for Companion Pass!

Million Mile SecretsHooray!  Southwest Reverses Decision, Hotel Points Transfers Count for Companion Pass!Million Mile Secrets Team

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Amazing news for y’all who had hoped to transfer hotel points to Southwest and earn the Companion Pass in the New Year.

Earlier this week, Southwest announced, without warning, points transfers from hotel and car rental loyalty programs would NO LONGER count toward the Companion Pass.

But they’ve changed their mind!  You can now earn the Companion Pass with hotel and car rental points transfers through March 31, 2017. 

Kudos to Southwest for responding to their customers!

Hooray Southwest Reverses Decision Hotel Points Transfers Count For Companion Pass
Grab a Loved One and Start Planning a Trip – Hotel Point Transfers Can Earn You a Southwest Companion Pass If You Transfer by March 31, 2017!

I’ll share the details!

Earn a Southwest Companion Pass

Link:   How to Fly (Almost) Free for 2 Years on Southwest

On January 1, 2017, Southwest abruptly changed the terms and conditions of their Companion Pass.  Points transferred from hotel or car rental loyalty programs no longer qualified to earn it.  But they’ve reversed the decision!

Through March 31, 2017, you can transfer points from hotels like Hyatt, Marriott, and Choice to earn the 110,000 Southwest points required in a calendar year to qualify for the Companion Pass, which I call the BEST deal in travel!

Hooray Southwest Reverses Decision Hotel Points Transfers Count For Companion Pass
If You Have Marriott or Starwood Points, You Can Book a Marriott Hotel + Air Package and Earn a Southwest Companion Pass for Almost 2 Years

Southwest says:

As we began the New Year on January 1, we took the opportunity to close a loophole in our Rapid Rewards Companion Pass terms and conditions related to transferred points from our Partners. This was an effort intended to clarify qualification requirements for Companion Pass, one of the best benefits in travel, as well as to protect the integrity and value of the Rapid Rewards program.

In doing so, we updated our terms and conditions which now clearly state that points transferred from hotel and car loyalty programs, and e-Rewards, e-Miles, Valued Opinions and Diners Club will no longer count toward qualification for a Companion Pass. Members will continue to earn toward Companion Pass benefits through paid flights flown on Southwest, Points earned through spend with Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards credit cards, and base points earned through transactions with Rapid Rewards partners.

Many of you have reached out to us since then, and we greatly appreciate your honest and candid feedback. Because we are a Company that values our Customers and believes in doing the right thing, we are offering a limited window for Customers to earn toward Companion Pass by transferring their loyalty points from these Partners.

To that end, points converted from the above mentioned programs will count towards a Companion Pass until March 31, 2017. This is a hard deadline and we will not be able to make any exceptions beyond March 31. If you have points with these Partners that you wanted to transfer, please do not wait. Make the transfer before the deadline.

We appreciate all of our Customers and look forward to seeing you onboard very soon!

This is fantastic news for folks who opened new cards or saved points to earn a Companion Pass for nearly 2 full years!  That’s because if you earn the Companion Pass in 2017, it will be valid for the remainder of the year AND all of the following year.

So Companion Passes earned in 2017 will be good through December 31, 2018!  Million Mile Secrets team member Keith already booked a Marriott Hotel + Air package after this news broke.  The Marriott representative said it would take 3 business days for the points to appear in his account.

But call quickly if you’re interested, because LOTS of folks will likely be making their transfers, too!  And here’s a reminder of what counts (and doesn’t count!) toward the Companion Pass.

Bottom Line

You’re in luck if you want to earn a Southwest Companion Pass with a hotel points transfer!  Because Southwest reversed their earlier decision and WILL allow these transfers to qualify toward earning the Companion Pass through March 31, 2017!

I’m relieved Southwest listened to their customers.  And decided to do right by them.  So now you have nearly 3 months to earn the best deal in travel!

Does this news help you get a Companion Pass?  Let me know what you think about this new development!

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Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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Late to the game – can I still do this if I transfer from SPG to Marriott this week?

I read in your earlier post it ‘takes up to 6 weeks to get the Southwest miles’. Am I out of luck?

I did mine today, Marriott told me it takes 3 days to post to Southwest ! so you still have time!

Thank you! Actually submitted on Monday, got my pass today (Wednesday). Two days only!

I just want to make sure this is correct. If I transfer 110k points from Marriott to Southwest, I will have the companion pass benefit?

no..you need at least 270,000 marriott points to get 110,000 southwest points plus 7 night marriot certificate…or you can transfer marriott points just for southwest points only (no hotel) and its 140,000 Marriott for 50,000 southwest…just did that today, worth it for me as I won’t use the 7 consecutive hotel nights…


I am confused. I transferred 6000 best western points last week in the hopes they’d count (also just got 100k bonus points with my Visa cards), and they are not showing up as counting. I sent two email inquiries and called a representative today. He sounded like he had never heard of this policy change. What can I do and who can I call to make sure these points count?

I keep seeing reference to “E-rewards” being transferred to Southwest. I am an E-rewards member and there is no option to transfer E-reward dollars to any airline. Does anyone know how this can be done when Southwest is not a redemption option on E-rewards? Thanks.

How hard is it to book a 7 night certificate stay at Tier 4 or 5 when selecting the top tier plus miles for companion pass and is that smart

I usually prefer to stay at nice hotel, so should I select Ritz tier 4-5 for 540,000 miles.

thoughts or suggestions

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