Targeted: Get Southwest A-List Elite Status With 3 Round-Trip Flights!

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Targeted: Get Southwest A-List Elite Status With 3 Round-Trip Flights!

Go to Travel GalTargeted: Get Southwest A-List Elite Status With 3 Round-Trip Flights!Million Mile Secrets Team

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Lyn writes about flying on Southwest on her blog and has a free guide that walks you step-by-step through how to earn the Southwest Companion Pass.  The pass lets 1 person fly nearly free with you for up to 2 years, and Emily and I believe it’s the best deal in travel.  Lyn discovered a great new Southwest promotion in her account recently, and I’ve asked her to share it with you!

Lyn:   While I write a lot about flying Southwest, especially showing readers how to fly FREE on the airline, I usually don’t talk much about the airline’s elite status levels.  Because my goal is to stretch miles and points as far as possible, so my family of 4 can ALL fly nearly free, traveling in First Class and elite benefits are not topics I think about.  Sitting in the back of the plane is just fine with me, so long as it’s free. 😉

Targeted Get Southwest A List Elite Status With 3 Round Trip Flights
Earn Southwest A-List Status With Only 3 Paid Round-Trip Flights With This New Targeted Promotion!

However, when I logged into my Southwest Rapid Rewards account earlier this week, I was surprised to find a promotion offering me Southwest A-List status, one of the airline’s elite status levels, after only 3 paid round-trip flights.  Usually, to achieve A-List status, you need to fly 25 one-way flights.  That’s a deal!

What Is Southwest A-List Status?

Link:   Southwest A-List Elite Status

A-List elite status on Southwest is not quite the same as elite status on other major airlines.  There are a few perks, but because Southwest doesn’t have Business Class seating, you don’t get special privileges like leather seats, eye masks, or a curtain to separate you from the masses. 😉

In addition to earning A-List through 25 paid one-way flights, you can also achieve it by accumulating 35,000 tier-qualifying points.  Unfortunately, not much qualifies you for A-List aside from:

  • Points earned on paid Southwest flights
  • Spending on the Chase Southwest cards; however, you only earn 1,500 tier-qualifying points for every $10,000 in purchases on the card up to a max of 15,000 tier-qualifying points each qualification period

The Targeted A-List Promotion

The targeted promotion, which several of my readers found as well, offers A-List status after:

  • 3 paid round-trip flights OR
  • 6 paid one-way flights OR
  • 8,750 tier-qualifying points earned

You’ll need to achieve one of these by April 30, 2018.

This A-List status will only be good through December 2018.  Whereas if you earned it the traditional way, it would be good from the time you earn it until the end of the FOLLOWING year, or December 2019.

A-List Status Benefits

Here’s what you get with A-List status.

1.   Priority Boarding

This means you are checked-in ahead of everyone else, who can’t check-in until 24 hours before departure.

2.   25% More Points per Flight

You will earn 25% more points per paid flight.  So, if you purchased a Wanna Get Away (the cheapest) fare, which normally earns you 6 points per $1, you will earn another 1.5 points per $1 spent.

3.   Fly by Access

Fly by Access is a special check-in line at the airport and also includes speedier security lane access where available.  You’ll need to show your A-List card, awarded when you achieve A-List status, to access these special lines.

Targeted Get Southwest A List Elite Status With 3 Round Trip Flights
A-List Status Grants You Access to Speedier Check-In and Security Lines

Some airports that offer Fly by include:

  • Atlanta
  • Chicago-Midway
  • Denver
  • Los Angeles
  • New York-LaGuardia
  • And many more!

4.   Free Same-Day Standby

This benefit is for those who want to catch an earlier flight than originally booked, but on the same day.  You’ll need to check with a customer service agent, and it must be a flight between the same cities you have already booked.

You can catch a later flight if there is a seat available, but you will pay the difference in fares.  Same-day standby does not apply to anyone else traveling with you, unfortunately.  Here are more details about Southwest’s standby policy.

5.   Dedicated Phone Line

You’ll get a special number you can call to reach customer service, though I generally never have a problem getting a Southwest agent on the phone quickly even without A-List.

Targeted Get Southwest A List Elite Status With 3 Round Trip Flights
With A-List Status, You’ll Also Get a Dedicated Customer Service Phone Line

There is a higher elite tier on Southwest called A-List Preferred, which grants bigger perks like earning double points per paid flight and free in-flight Wi-Fi.  It’s earned through 50 one-way paid flights or 70,000 tier-qualifying points.

How to See If You’ve Been Targeted

I discovered this offer when logging into my Southwest Rapid Rewards account at and then clicking on “My Account.”

Targeted Get Southwest A List Elite Status With 3 Round Trip Flights
Select “My Account” to See If You’ve Been Targeted

From there, scroll down the lefthand side and click on the “Promotions tab.

Targeted Get Southwest A List Elite Status With 3 Round Trip Flights
See If You Have Any Promotions in Your Account

If you see it, click on the promotion, then select the “Register button, as you’ll need to register in order to qualify.

Targeted Get Southwest A List Elite Status With 3 Round Trip Flights
Click the Button to Register for the Promotion

And that’s it!  You can start flying right away to qualify.

Is It Worth It?

Because we almost NEVER pay for Southwest flights, the main benefit for us to earn A-List would be the priority boarding.  Right now, we pay $15 per way for Early Bird check-in for my husband, so he can check in before everyone else to receive a better boarding order and thus, improved seat selection, because he needs more legroom.  So A-List elite status could replace that Early Bird for us.  And could be worth it if you’re in a similar situation.

But to get it, we’d have to fly 3 paid round-trip flights out of Indianapolis (where we live).  The cheapest flights from here right now are $49 per way to New York, which would cost us $300 if we took 3 flights to New York City to get Priority Boarding (to replace Early Bird) through the end of 2018.

Alternately, if we paid $300 for Early Bird check-in, that would get us 10 flights at $15 per way.  And it’s doubtful we will fly more than that on Southwest this year.  So we won’t complete the promotion unless we happen to need 3 paid flights before the end of April. 🙂

In my weekly round-up of the best Southwest flight deals checked every Tuesday, I saw some flights for only ~$29 out of major cities, so it’s possible to do 3 flights for ~$180, which would be equivalent to 6 Early Bird round-trip flights (at $15 each way).

Run the numbers and see if the perks of A-List are worth it to you!

Bottom Line

You may be able to earn Southwest A-List elite status more quickly on Southwest through a targeted promotion.  Check your Southwest account, and if you’re targeted, complete 3 paid flights by April 30, 2018, to earn the status.

Depending on your situation, this could be an easy way to see if you like flying as an elite passenger on Southwest!

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Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card

  • Earn Companion Pass and 30,000 points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months. Offer ends 2/11/19. Companion Pass is promotional and will be valid through 12/31/19.
  • Every time you fly, they fly free of airline charges* for the rest of 2019. *Does not include taxes and fees from $5.60 one-way
  • 3,000 bonus points after your Cardmember anniversary
  • 2 points per $1 spent on Southwest® purchases and Rapid Rewards® Hotel and Car Rental Partner purchases
  • 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Earn unlimited points that don't expire as long as your card account is open
  • No blackout dates or seat restrictions

More Info

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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I was targeted and took the 3 round trip flights during the period. The issue I discovered later was that the flights had to be booked AND completed during the period, not just completed. I called SWA and was given incorrect information by a rep initially so I thought I met the requirements to maintain a-list status at conclusion of promo. Found out recently that is not the case and I will lose A list status as soon as promo window ends. I called them but it fell on deaf ears. The fine print is definitely not consistent with what the spirit of the promotion seems to be. Clearly that is true as it duped at least one of their phone reps, not just me. And by the way, the customers registration in the promotion also has to be done prior to when the first qualifying flight is purchased. Doesn’t matter if both the purchase and completion of flights occur within the promotional period.

About a week ago I received a targeted EMAIL granting me A-List status through April 30 just for registering, extended through the end of the year if I complete 6 paid flights by April 30. (I won’t do mileage runs to extend my A-List status, but it might incentivize me to book paid flights instead of reward flights.)

Was targeted. But not interested.

However it says tier qualifying miles. Does that mean credit card sign up bonus or spending will count?

If someone wants to do this but without actually paying for the flights, remember you can book these directly with UR points through the Chase UR portal and it counts as a paid flight. With CSR, you get a 1.5 cent value which is very close to the value you get with SW points.

So sorry but can you explain the acronyms? 🙂

No worries, Stacey. He’s talking about using Chase Ultimate Rewards points to pay for a Southwest flight. If you have the Chase Sapphire Reserve card the points are worth 1.5 cents toward the cost of the ticket.

It sounds more confusing than it is. To make it easier we’ve written up this step-by-step post on how to book Southwest Flights with Chase Ultimate Rewards points:

Great info! We’re not targeted, but nice to learn how to check for such promos. Also appreciate your analysis of whether it’s worth it to you. Thanks for sharing!