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Update: After March 31, 2017, transferring hotel points to Southwest no longer counts towards the Companion Pass. But here’s how to earn Companion Pass points when booking paid nights at hotels.
Folks seeking extra points for the Southwest Companion Pass will be happy to hear that Choice hotels has increased the maximum number of points you can purchase in a year.
In the past, you could buy 20,000 points at most per year. Now, you’re allowed up to 50,000 points.
What’s the Deal?
You can now buy up to 50,000 points Choice hotel points per year, instead of only 20,000. Points cost 1.1 cents each ($11 per 1,000 points).
Folks often buy Choice hotel points to top-off their account for an award, or to transfer to Southwest to qualify for the Companion Pass.
You can transfer Choice hotel points to Southwest at a ratio of 6,000 Choice Hotel points to 1,800 Southwest points.
That leaves them 6,000 Southwest points short of the 110,000 required in a year to qualify for the pass. It’s worth getting because your companion flies with you for almost free on paid and award tickets!
So to get 6,000 Southwest points, you’d transfer 24,000 Choice Hotel points (24,000 Choice Hotel points = 7,200 Southwest Points). But in the past you were restricted to buying 20,000 points per year.
Now it’s not an issue! 24,000 points will cost $264.
Or you can use points for free nights at Choice hotels anywhere (including typically expensive nights in Europe).
Keep in mind, there are even cheaper ways to earn Southwest points toward the Companion Pass, like buying flowers and gifts!
You can now buy up to 50,000 Choice hotel points per year. Previously, the maximum was 20,000.
That’s good news for folks trying to qualify for the Southwest Companion Pass. Or for those who buy Choice points for expensive award nights in Europe.
I wouldn’t normally buy Choice points unless they’re on sale, but the new limit should be useful for some!