Get a Free Flight With the All-New Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Plus Credit Card from Chase

EDITOR’S NOTE: THIS OFFER IS NO LONGER AVAILABLE. See our page for Best Airline Miles Credit Cards for the current offers.

Speaking of frequent flyer credit cards… While looking at the new Southwest Airlines frequent flyer program, I ran across the Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Plus Credit Card – FREE FLIGHT

I’ve been digging around for info on Southwest because they’re expanding into our market in the near future, and I’m looking forward to having access to their flights again. I used to fly Southwest fairly regularly, but haven’t been able to do so since we moved a few years ago.

Re-working the Rapid Rewards program

As for their new rewards program, Southwest is ditching their old frequent flyer system (take 16 flights, get one free) in favor of a new points based system. You can now get  25, 000 bonus points toward free flights after your first purchase.

At first blush, the new program is a little convoluted, but it looks like a pretty solid deal. You earn points based on the price of your tickets and can then exchange them for flights, again based on the ticket price.

The real strength of their program, however, is the lack of blackout dates. According to Southwest, “every seat is a reward seat, ” so you won’t have any trouble using your rewards. Anyone that has tried to use their frequent flyer miles knows that this is a huge benefit.

Earning rewards with the Southwest credit card

So what about

What about that free flight?

In addition to the ongoing rewards, you’ll also get a free flight after your first purchase. Here’s the fine print:

Rapid Rewards points can be redeemed for Wanna Get Away fares at a rate of 60 points for each $1 of fare price. You will qualify for and receive your bonus points after your first purchase. First purchase does not include using your account for balance transfers or cash advances, or using any checks that access your account. After qualifying, please allow 6 to 8 weeks for bonus points to post to your Rapid Rewards account. To be eligible for this bonus offer, account must be open and not in default at the time of fulfillment. This one-time bonus offer is valid only for first-time Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards personal Cardmembers. Previous and existing Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards personal Cardmembers are not eligible for this bonus offer.

Note that this signup bonus is only available for first-time cardmembers.

Related: Three Top Tips For Finding Cheap Flights

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15 Responses to “Get a Free Flight With the All-New Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Plus Credit Card from Chase”

  1. Anonymous

    @ Kris (and everyone)

    So … It turns out it was my bad (mostly). My awards did post and did post within 4 weeks of my first purchase, and it was for four awards which I think is two round trips. None of the Chase people realized this — and one did tell me it could be 6-8 weeks, plus 30 days delivery, but I also wasn’t looking in the right place on Southwest.

  2. Anonymous


    Thanks for letting me know.

    How long since you’ve first used your card? Is there a delay for you, too?

    20,000 points?! By their flight calculator from credits to points, that’d be just over one — not two — free flights. (They show it as being 1200 points = one credit and 16 credits being needed for a free flight).

    How shifty.

    I really wish I’d taken a screenshot. There was a terms and conditions file and I was thinking it’d include Chase’s promise to me. How naive. I’m quite sure they’re not living up to it — since they’re not even living up to the always changing timelines I’m told on the phone. Do you have anything in writing?

    I think I will have to report them to my state Attorney General’s consumer protection division, or perhaps the federal consumer protection agency. But, first I need to know just how badly they plan to renege …

    This really doesn’t give me confidence in Chase. It’s a shame because I wanted to dump Bank of America.

  3. Anonymous

    @Kris — That’s outrageous. Apparently they used to actually buy two vouchers for new customers (so said a Chase rep I talked to). I will probably end up reporting this to my state AG’s consumer protection division. How long have you been waiting and when do they claim you’ll finally get your points?

    I am very disappointed in myself that I didn’t take a screenshot of what the promise was from Chase. I was thinking it’d be in the terms and conditions file I saved, but it was not. Do you have any record of what the deal was they promised?

  4. Anonymous


    I am a new Southwest customer, also waiting for my two free flights for signing up; that supposedly I am creditted weeks after the first use of my card. I just now got off the phone with them, I didn’t get the “two free flights” question answered, they seemed to really go around it. What they did tell me is that 20,000 points will be creditted to my account that I can use towards flights. Since they’ve switched over to the points system, do they not do the literal two free flights anymore? It would all be much simpler that way.

  5. Anonymous

    Jeff — I also signed up for the card for the two free flights and am extremely frustrated because now — almost 10 weeks later — nothing has posted. I don’t think I have the paperwork still. If you have something in writing showing what the offer was, I would love to have the documentation (obviously nothing with your personally identifying info, just their form letter). I am positive what I was mailed referenced two flights and that their web site did, too.

    I keep calling because I had not seen any fine print about a delay and by phone they claimed it was a 4-6 week delay; then they said it’d be a 6-8 week delay for “delivery.” And, now they are claiming it’s 6-8 weeks then another 30 days to post. Who knows if they’ll actually post for the full two flights, since now they’ve switched to points which may or may not translate to actual flights. (One staffer is agreeing that’s outrageous and is trying to get them posted.)

    I stopped charging to the card a few weeks ago in protest until my flights finally post.

    Jeff and Debbie: Did any credit post as a result of the sign-up bonus for you?

  6. Anonymous

    Debbie, I too saw the website and 2 free roundtrip tickets. I have paper work regarding the 2 trips, but doesn’t say “roundtrip”. Did you ever find a link or info regarding the roundtrips.

  7. Anonymous

    I signed up for this card when if offered TWO roundtrip flights but didn’t save the page. Now not sure they are crediting my account accordingly. Does someone have a link to the page from this offer?

  8. Anonymous

    Right now on the website (20-FEB-2011), it is showing, for a limited time, TWO Roundtrip FREE FLIGHTS after your 1st purchase for signing up for the Southwest Rapid Rewards VISA card from Chase. Offer good for new cardmembers only. THIS is a great deal. We have been using this VISA card for some time now and accumulated quite a lot of free tickets. If you live in a city that Southwest services and travel to locations serviced by Southwest it’s the best deal going.

  9. Anonymous

    Right now on the website (20-FEB-2011), it is showing, for a limited time, TWO Roundtrip FREE FLIGHTS after your 1st purchase for signing up for the Southwest Rapid Rewards VISA card from Chase. Offer good for new cardmembers only. THIS is a great deal.

  10. Anonymous

    I signed up for this credit card a few months ago, when they had this promotion running plus you could get up to $500 in gift cards for spending ~5000 in 3 months or something like that. I hit that easily before X-mas time, got $500 in gift cards for southwest, a free flight and since I had 12 credits that were about to expire in January 2011, and you receive 1 credit for ~1200 you spend, I got another free flight. So all in all, 2 free flights and 500 in gift cards, plus first year fee was waived.

    I would recommend to wait for a similar deal to pop up, I think this one has since expired. You can research it more on slick deals.

  11. Anonymous

    Any idea on how the reward is given? I have the Amex Blue Travel that gives the reward as a credit when purchased with the Amex card and you have enough points to redeem. Do you know if I can sign-up and get a free flight and use it when purchasing with the Amex card so I can essentially get two free flights?


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