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Compare Southwest Airlines credit cards

Earn points on credit card purchases and redeem them for rewards flights.

Updated . What changed?

Fact checked

Our pick for a Southwest card: Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card logo

40,000-point

Signup bonus after spending $1,000 in first 3 months

  • Enjoy $75 in Southwest travel credits annually
  • Earn 2x points on Southwest, hotels and rental cars
  • Get 7,500 points each card anniversary
See offer
If you frequently fly Southwest Airlines, you might want to consider a cobranded credit card. That way, you can quickly rack up rewards points on purchases, which can be redeemed for flights, hotel stays, car rentals, gift cards and more.

But what’s especially cool about Southwest credit cards is that you can usually offset the annual fee with the anniversary bonus points you receive each year along with the cards’ perks.

Compare Southwest Airlines credit cards

Select your credit score range in the table below and compare Southwest Airlines credit cards.

Name Product Foreign transaction fee Welcome offer Rewards Filter values
Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card
None
40,000 points after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months
2x points on Southwest and Rapid Rewards hotel and car rentals and 1x points on all other purchases
Earn 40,000 points after you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months of account opening.
Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card
None
40,000 points after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months
2x points on Southwest Airlines and 1x points on all other purchases
Earn 40,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card
3% of the transaction value
40,000 points after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months
2x points on Southwest Airlines and 1x points on all other purchases
Earn 40,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open.
Southwest Rapid Rewards® Performance Business Credit Card
None
70,000 points after spending $5,000 in the first 3 months, plus 30,000 points after spending $25,000 in the first 6 months
3x points on Southwest Airlines, 2x points on social media and search engine advertising, Internet, cable, and phone services and 1x points on all other purchases
Earn 70,000 points when you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months. Plus, earn an additional 30,000 points after you spend $25,000 on purchases in the first 6 months.
Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Credit Card
None
60,000 points after spending $3,000 in the first 3 months and 6,000 points after your card anniversary
2x points on Southwest Airlines and 1x points on all other purchases
Earn 60,000 points after spending $3,000 in the first 3 months and 6,000 points after your card anniversary.
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Quick look at Southwest Airlines cards

Personal credit cards

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit CardSouthwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit CardSouthwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card
Annual fee$69$99$149
Reward points
  • 2x points on Southwest Airlines purchases
  • 1x points on all other purchases
  • 2x points on Southwest Airlines purchases
  • 1x points on all other purchases
  • 2x points on Southwest Airlines purchases
  • 1x points on all other purchases
Signup bonus40,000 points after spending $1,000 in your first 3 months.40,000 points after spending $1,000 in your first 3 months.40,000 points after spending $1,000 in your first 3 months.
Anniversary points3,0006,0007,500
Foreign transaction fee3%0%0%
Priority boardingxx4 per year when available
TSA PreCheck or Global Entry fee creditxxx
Southwest annual travel creditxx$75

Business credit cards

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Credit CardSouthwest Rapid Rewards® Performance Business Credit Card
Annual fee$99$199
Reward points
  • 2x points on Southwest Airlines purchases
  • 1x points on all other purchases
  • 3x points on Southwest Airlines purchases
  • 2x points on social media and search engine advertising, Internet, cable, and phone services
  • 1x points on all other purchases
Signup bonusEarn 60,000 bonus points once you spend $3,000 within your first 3 months of card membershipEarn 70,000 bonus points once you spend $5,000 within your first 3 months of card membership. Plus, earn an additional 30,000 points after you spend $25,000 on purchases in the first 6 months.
Anniversary points6,0009,000
Foreign transaction fee0%0%
Priority boardingx4 per year when available
TSA PreCheck or Global Entry fee creditxUp to $100 once every 4 years
Southwest annual travel creditxx

Which Southwest Airlines credit card should I get?

Making the right credit card choice often depends on how frequently you fly with the airline. But you should also consider if the card’s value is enough to make up for its annual fee.

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card logo
Finder Rating: 3.5 / 5

★★★★★

Credit recommended (670-850)
See offer
on Creditcards.com's secure site
Rates & fees

670
Min. credit score
$69
Annual fee
Up to 2x
Points
40,000
Points welcome offer
You'll get to pay a low annual fee of $69 and still get the perks that come with the more expensive Southwest credit cards.
  • Get this card if you occasionally fly Southwest Airlines and mostly fly within the US.
Annual Fee $69
Purchase APR 15.99% to 22.99% variable
Balance transfer APR 15.99% to 22.99% variable
Welcome offer 40,000 points after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months
Rewards 2x points on Southwest Airlines and 1x points on all other purchases

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card logo
Finder Rating: 3.6 / 5

★★★★★

Credit recommended (670-850)
See offer
on Creditcards.com's secure site
Rates & fees

670
Min. credit score
$99
Annual fee
Up to 2x
Points
40,000
Points welcome offer
This card costs $99, which is $30 more than the entry-level card. However, you get 6,000 more anniversary bonus points worth around $30, effectively canceling out the annual fee difference. And since the card has no foreign transaction fees, you can easily carry it with you on your international travels.
  • Get this card if you occasionally fly Southwest Airlines but don't want to pay foreign transaction fees.
Annual Fee $99
Purchase APR 15.99% to 22.99% variable
Balance transfer APR 15.99% to 22.99% variable
Welcome offer 40,000 points after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months
Rewards 2x points on Southwest Airlines and 1x points on all other purchases

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card logo
Finder Rating: 4.1 / 5

★★★★★

Credit recommended (670-850)
See offer
on Creditcards.com's secure site
Rates & fees

670
Min. credit score
$149
Annual fee
Up to 2x
Points
40,000
Points welcome offer
This card has an annual fee of $149, which is higher than the other two personal credit cards. But you get 7,500 anniversary bonus points each year plus a $75 annual Southwest travel credit. The combined value of these two perks is $150, which offsets the annual fee. In addition, you get reimbursement for four upgraded boardings every year that could otherwise cost you between $30 and $50 on its own.
  • Get this card if you frequently fly Southwest Airlines and want the highest value.
Annual Fee $149
Purchase APR 15.99% to 22.99% variable
Balance transfer APR 15.99% to 22.99% variable
Welcome offer 40,000 points after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months
Rewards 2x points on Southwest and Rapid Rewards hotel and car rentals and 1x points on all other purchases

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Credit Card

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Credit Card logo
Finder Rating: 4.3 / 5

★★★★★

Credit recommended (740-850)
Apply now
on Chase's secure site
Rates & fees

740
Min. credit score
$99
Annual fee
Up to 2x
Points
60,000
Points welcome offer
With this card, you basically get the same perks as the personal Southwest credit cards, except you get to earn a higher signup bonus.
  • Get this card if you frequently fly Southwest Airlines but don't want to burn a hole in your company pockets.
Annual Fee $99
Purchase APR 15.99% to 22.99% variable
Balance transfer APR 15.99% to 22.99% variable
Welcome offer 60,000 points after spending $3,000 in the first 3 months and 6,000 points after your card anniversary
Rewards 2x points on Southwest Airlines and 1x points on all other purchases

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Performance Business Credit Card

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Performance Business Credit Card logo
Finder Rating: 4.5 / 5

★★★★★

Credit recommended (670-850)
Apply now
on Chase's secure site
Rates & fees

670
Min. credit score
$199
Annual fee
Up to 3x
Points
70,000
Points welcome offer
With an annual fee of $199, this card has the highest upfront cost compared to all Southwest credit cards. However, you can easily offset the annual fee with the perks you get.
  • Get this card if you frequently fly Southwest Airlines and want to earn more reward points on your purchases.
  • You get up to $100 in statement credit to cover for your TSA PreCheck or Global Entry application fee.
  • You get 30,000 anniversary points worth $90.
  • These two perks already come with a value of around $190 which is enough to offset the annual fee and make all other perks an extra bonus to your account.
Annual Fee $199
Purchase APR 15.99% to 22.99% variable
Balance transfer APR 15.99% to 22.99% variable
Welcome offer 70,000 points after spending $5,000 in the first 3 months, plus 30,000 points after spending $25,000 in the first 6 months
Rewards 3x points on Southwest Airlines, 2x points on social media and search engine advertising, Internet, cable, and phone services and 1x points on all other purchases
Note: You aren’t eligible for the signup bonus if you already own a Southwest credit card or if you have earned a Southwest signup bonus in the past 24 months.

Tip: You can combine signup bonuses between a personal and a business Southwest credit card. Also, if you want to quickly earn a massive batch of points, you can get a Chase Sapphire card, earn a signup bonus and transfer your Chase reward points to Southwest points at a 1:1 ratio.

Other cards you can use to earn Southwest points

You don’t have to get a Southwest Airlines credit card to earn Southwest points. For example, both the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card and the Chase Sapphire Reserve® let you earn accelerated points on travel and dining purchases, which you can later transfer to Southwest points in a 1:1 ratio.

Should I pick a Southwest Airlines credit card or a general travel card?

This largely depends on what your goals are. For example, travelers who want to earn as many points as possible should consider the Chase Sapphire Reserve®. This way, you’ll earn Chase Sapphire Reserve®x points all travel purchases — including Southwest flights — instead of the 2x points you earn with a Southwest card.

But those who want to get the best value should consider the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card. That’s because the card basically pays itself with its perks, plus you get to earn points on Southwest flights. And with the generous signup bonus, you can earn the Southwest companion pass with half the required spending. This is one of the most valuable perks you can get.

Typical features of a Southwest Airlines credit card

The cool thing about all Southwest credit cards is that you get the same perks and features, even with entry-level cards. These features are:

  • Earn reward points.
    All credit cards except the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Performance Business Credit Card earn 2x points on Southwest purchases and 1x points on everything else you buy.
  • Signup bonus.
    You get to earn a generous signup bonus with all Southwest credit cards. The personal credit cards offer the same signup bonus, while the business cards offer a slightly higher bonus.
  • First and second checked bag free.
    You don’t actually need a Southwest credit card for this perk. But if you plan on bringing additional bags, expect to pay $75 per bag.
  • Earn companion certificate.
    You can earn a Southwest companion pass by making 100 one-way flights or earning 110,000 qualifying points in a calendar year.
  • Lost luggage reimbursement.
    If something happens to your checked or carry-on bags, either being damaged or lost by the carrier, you’re covered up to $3,000 per passenger.
  • Baggage delay insurance.
    Whenever your bags are delayed for more than six hours by your carrier, you can get reimbursement for toiletries and clothing purchases up to $100 a day for three days.

How much are Southwest points worth?

The value of Southwest points largely depends on how you redeem them. Redeeming points for Southwest flights has the highest redemption value, which comes at 1.3 cents per mile on average.

For example, a roundtrip flight between the two Southwest hubs Los Angeles (LAX) and Chicago (MDW) can cost you as low as 16,500 points or $190 on Wanna Get Away fare. That comes as 1.1 cents per mile.

How to find the best deal?

To find the best deal you have to do the math yourself. Here’s how it works:

  1. Find the flight on the Southwest website.
  2. Find out how many miles you need to redeem.
  3. Find out how much the flight costs in cash.
  4. Divide the cash amount with the miles: $190/16,500 = 0.011, or 1.1 cents per mile.

The higher the number you get, the higher the value for your miles.

Bottom line

Southwest credit cards can be an excellent addition to your wallet if you frequently fly with the airline. You get to earn the same signup bonus and reward points with all personal credit cards, and the perks often offset the annual fee.

But if you prefer other airlines, compare airline credit cards or general travel credit cards until you find a card that works for you.

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