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Live near a Southwest Airlines hub and don’t have one of the carrier’s consumer credit cards yet? Now may be the time to apply, since the cards are offering sky-high sign-up bonuses for a limited time.
Throughout June, the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card and the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card have this deal: Earn 60,000 points after you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months your account is open.
With either card, you earn 2 points per dollar spent on purchases made with Southwest® and Rapid Rewards® hotel and car rental partners, and 1 point per dollar on all other purchases. There’s no cap on the number of points you can earn, and they don’t expire as long as your account is open. There are no travel blackout dates, no fees for two checked bags and no fees for reservation changes.
Your reward points from either card can be redeemed for flights on Southwest or 50 other international carriers, or hotels, gift cards or merchandise.
How do the two cards differ? The Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card gives you 3,000 bonus points after your card-member anniversary each year, and the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card gives you 6,000 bonus points for your card-iversary. The annual fee for the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card is $69. For the Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card, the annual fee is $99. The 3,000-point annual bonus difference — which NerdWallet calculates is equivalent to $30 — makes the annual fee difference a wash. If you travel internationally, Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Credit Card has no foreign transaction fees.
With this elevated sign-up bonus, Southwest joins The Platinum Card® from American Express at the 60,000-mile bonus level, at least for now.