Southwest Airlines is primarily known as a low-cost carrier in the United States. With its one class (all economy) seating, line-up boarding process and bags fly free policies it is often overlooked by travelers who are trying to get elite status. However, Southwest has one of the best, and relatively unknown, frequent flier programs in the industry… the Companion Pass.
What is it the Companion Pass? The Southwest Companion Pass (http://www.southwest.com/rapidrewards/tiers-more-companion-pass) allows you to designate a companion who can fly for FREE whenever you fly. You can designate anyone! Your spouse, child, friend, co-worker or yourself (you’ll get a sign to place on the seat next to you and reserve the seat).
When this package comes in the mail it’s time to travel !!!
How do I get the Companion Pass? There are only two ways to qualify for the Companion Pass: 1) Earn 110,000 Companion Pass Qualifying points or 2) Fly 100 one-way flights in a calendar year on Southwest.
How long is a Companion Pass good for? The year you qualify for it and the entire following calendar year. You heard that right! It is good for the rest of the year you earn it in and the ENTIRE NEXT YEAR. This means the earlier you earn the companion pass in the year, the better. If you earn it on November 15, 2014 its good until December 31, 2015 (12.5 months). But, if you earn it on February 15, 2014 its still good until December 31, 2015 (20.5 months).
How do I use my Companion Pass? Once you have qualified for the companion pass it’s super easy to use. You can designate a companion online at: https://www.southwest.com/flight/login?returnUrl=/account/rapidrewards/companion-status or you can call Southwest. Once you have done this you can immediately start booking flights with your companion. You first book your own flight (with money or points) and then you can either click on “Add a Companion” to book a flight for your companion (you only pay the government required security fees of usually $2.50 per segment) or call Southwest to book it for your companion.
It is important to note that the primary companion pass holder must be present for the companion to fly. If you book a flight using your companion pass, but are not on the same flight Southwest will remove your companion from the flight and may revoke your pass (and may ban you from flying with them in the future). Your companion does not earn any Rapid Reward points when you book them using your companion pass since they are flying for free.
Crazy Tip? The Southwest Companion Pass even works on award flights. So if you book a flight with points your companion still flies for FREE. This means that not only does it cut your flying costs in half, it also doubles your fun when you are booking reward flights.
Have questions? E-mail us at DINKTravel@gmail.com