Right now, through March 7th, you can buy Southwest Rapid Rewards with a 40% bonus. To buy? Or not to buy?
Usually, I don’t recommend buying points, unless you’ve got a very clear case for buying them. When currencies are tied to the cash value of the flights, the case for purchasing points is even tougher to make. Southwest Rapid Rewards are conventionally worth around 1.5 to 1.7 cents per point, depending on whom you ask. In three years of redeeming Rapid Rewards, I’ve gotten anywhere from 1.27 to 1.97 cents per Rapid Rewards point.
In order to trigger the 40% bonus, you’ll need to buy at least 10,000 Rapid Rewards, and you’ll ring up a bill of $275.00. With $275 for 14,000 points you’re looking at a value of about 1.96 cents per Rapid Rewards point. Even at my all time high redemption value of 1.97 cents per point, the savings are negligible.
The Only Time I Buy Southwest Rapid Rewards
If I buy Southwest Rapid Rewards all three of the following conditions have to be met:
- I’m booking speculative travel.
- Southwest flies the route I need (without any pesky stopovers at Midway or Baltimore).
- I don’t already have enough Southwest points to book the trip.
Any trip that I may need to reschedule or cancel is a great candidate for booking with Rapid Rewards, due to Southwest’s super flexible change and cancellation policy. If you book a Southwest flight with points, and you need to cancel it, the points are automatically deposited back into your account. The refund on points is instant!
Similarly, when you need to change a flight, it’s super easy. Login to your Rapid Rewards account online, and modify the trip. If your new flight selection needs more points, you’ll have to pay the difference. If the new flight is less points than your original flight, you’ll get the difference refunded back to your account instantly!
There are no change or cancellation fees for Southwest flights, even with their cheapest fares! This is a fantastic feature, and I took full advantage back when I had my Companion Pass for 2016 and 2017. Right now though, I don’t think I’ll be buying any Rapid Rewards points…how about you? You have until March 7th to buy Southwest miles.