Southwest Business Card Reviews
Chase offers two Southwest business cards that can help you get the coveted Southwest Companion Pass:
- The Southwest® Rapid Rewards® Performance Business Credit Card
- The Southwest® Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Credit Card.
But Companion Pass aside, how valuable are these cards? In this Southwest business card reviews we will take a look at the welcome offer, card perks and share our overall thoughts for both cards.
Southwest Business Cards: Current Welcome Offers
The Chase Rapid Rewards Performance Business Card has the following welcome offer:
- Earn 80,000 points after spending $5,000 in the first 3 months after accounting opening.
- The card has a $199 annual fee which is NOT waived.
The Chase Rapid Rewards Premier Business Card has the following welcome offer:
- Earn 60,000 points after spending $3,000 in the first 3 months.
- The card comes with a $99 annual fee which is NOT waived.
Chase Application Rules
As with any other Chase card, you cannot qualify for either card if you have opened more than 5 credit cards with any bank in the last 24 months. In addition, you cannot open a Southwest business card if you are a current holder of that specific card. Also, you cannot receive a welcome offer for a card that you have received one on in the last 24 months, even if you no longer hold that card.
Lastly: having one Southwest business card does not affect your eligibility for the other card.
Southwest Business Card Reviews: Earning Rates
Both cards offer bonus points per dollar spent on multiple categories:
Neither card is known for its earning prowess. Earning 4x or 3x on Southwest is not that valuable, considering how many cards earn multiple points per dollar on airline purchases. It could be a useful earning option for anyone going after a Southwest Companion pass though.
Southwest Business Card Benefits
The Performance and the Premier cards each have their own set of benefits, with a few overlapping:
|Points earned every year on your Cardmember anniversary||9,000||6,000|
|4 Upgraded Boardings when available||X|
|Up to 365 inflight WiFi credits per year||X|
|Global Entry or TSA PreCheck fee credit||X|
|Two EarlyBird Check-Ins per year||X|
|25% back on inflight purchases||X|
|No foreign transaction fees||X||X|
|Earn 1,500 tier qualifying points toward A-List status for every $10,000 spent||X||X|
Southwest Performance Business Card Perks
The Southwest Performance Business Card offers stronger perks than the Southwest Premier Business Card, which is expected due to a higher annual fee. The upgraded boardings alone come close to justifying the Performance card's $199 annual fee for loyal Southwest flyers. Upgraded boardings cost between $30 and $50 per flight. The inflight credits can also be very useful. Southwest charges $8 for WiFi, so if you use your inflight WiFi credits 25 times in a year you'll have covered the cost of the annual fee.
Pro Tip: you can use the WiFi credits for everyone in your travel party, even on the same flight. The WiFi credits are good for 365 per year, not one per day.
Southwest Premier Business Card Perks
Meanwhile, the Premier card's perks are more modest. The two EarlyBird Check-Ins per year can be pretty useful. EarlyBird Check-In costs between $15 and $25 per flight and gives you automatic check-in before the usual 24-hour check-in for Southwest flights. Meanwhile, 25% off in-flight purchases can be helpful for those who regularly purchase WiFi or alcoholic beverages on Southwest flights.
The last line in the table above shows that both cards can be used to achieve A-List or A-List Preferred status through spend. This perk is a nice little boost for those nearing A-List or A-List Preferred status at the end of the year. For those looking to earn status solely through spend, this is not a very good deal. Cardholders can earn 1,500 qualifying points for ever $10,000 in spend on either card. At this rate, cardholders would have to spend over $230,000 dollars in one year to achieve A-List. A-List Preferred requires twice as much!
The Performance card's annual fee is easy to justify given the card's benefits. And the 9,000 anniversary points only sweetens the deal.
The Premier, on the other hand, is less compelling. Assuming the maximum cash cost of $25 per EarlyBird Check-In, the annual fee goes down from $99 to $49. With 6,000 anniversary points, you're essentially buying 6,000 Southwest points for $49 (approx. 0.8 cents per point). All this without factoring in the 25% off from inflight purchases.
The Premier card can make sense for some folks. But the Performance card is a much stronger card over all, despite the higher annual fee.
For purposes of getting the Southwest Companion Pass, we think the Performance card makes more sense. Getting the CP with a business card is much easier than relying only on a Southwest personal card. So if you're going to open a Southwest business card to get the Companion Pass, you might as well open the one with a bigger welcome offer and that gives you better perks. That said, if the Performance card's higher minimum spend of $5,000 is too high for you, then it makes sense to go with the Premier, which has a lower spend spend requirement of $3,000.
Southwest Business Card Reviews: ToP Thoughts
The Rapid Rewards Performance Business Card and the Rapid Rewards Premier Business Card can both be useful for frequent Southwest flyers. Of course, the two cards are also excellent for getting the Southwest Companion Pass. With their different set of perks, the Performance and the Premier can both help enhance your Southwest experience once you get the Companion Pass.
How do the Southwest business cards fit within your Companion Pass strategy? Do you consider either card to be a keeper? Come join the discussion in our Facebook group!