UPDATE: This 50,000 bonus offer is NO LONGER VALID. It was accurate at the time of publishing in September 2013, but is no longer valid. As of 6/30/2014 the bonus is 25,000 Southwest points as described on our Top Credit Card Offers page.
Southwest Airlines just increased the Rapid Rewards bonus points offer to an amazing 50,000 points when you open their Chase credit card and put $2,000 in regular spending on the card over the first three months the account is open. A $99 annual fee applies from the first year.
The 50,000 Rapid Rewards points are worth approximately $714 at the Southwest rate of 70 points per $1.
As we described in our Planning our Free Trip to Disney World article, Southwest is opening up a new route directly from Richmond to Orlando, so this new bonus offer couldn’t have come at a better time.
I went to the Southwest site and put in a mock booking for January 2014 and the fares would have been $100 each way ($200 round-trip), but they only cost 4,680 Rapid Rewards points each way. So for 9,360 Rapid Rewards points and a $5 tax surcharge, each of us will fly round-trip to Disney World! That means by opening this one credit card and meeting the $2,000 spending minimum, five of us could fly this route for just the $99 annual fee, which is just amazing.
My favorite travel related site, ThePointsGuy.com, has a great article on this new offer and how you can open two of these cards and time your bonus points so you get nearly two full years of the Southwest Companion Pass, which lets you book a Southwest flight (for cash OR points) and your designated companion flies completely free! I have not personally done this, so I’ll refer you to his explanation here.