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Free Flights

Rewards Points Travel

Free Flights with Southwest Airlines

July 21, 2016

The Southwest Airlines Companion Pass is the best credit card reward we have earned so far.  We booked $4,110.67 in free flights during the first 10 weeks of having the pass.  Yep, for real.  As of last Thursday, we are booked for 10 round trip flights on Southwest Airlines.  You can do the exact same thing we did.  Below you’ll find 3 simple steps to get a ton of free flights with Southwest Airlines.

If you missed our previous post on the Southwest Companion Pass, I’ll give you some quick deets right now.  To earn the pass you need to earn 110k Southwest Rapid Rewards points in a single calendar year.  Once you do, you’ll receive the Companion Pass.  The pass lasts the rest of the year in which you earn it AND the entire next year.  Now the fun begins.  You can start booking your free flights with the 110k points you earned.  When you do, you can add your companion to each one of your booked tickets for free.  It’s pretty awesome.

Here’s how you can earn the 110k points to get your Companion Pass.  While there are a few different ways you can stack these points with Southwest’s partner programs, I feel like the following route is the easiest.

  1. Sign up for the Southwest Plus card, spend $2,000 before 90 days and earn the 50k bonus points. 50k offer for the Southwest Plus Card
  2. Sign up for the Southwest Premier card, again spend $2,000 before 90 days and earn another 50k bonus points. (suggestion: wait 30 days in between sign ups)Southwes Airlined 50k Premier Card
  3. With the points earned from spending $4k and the 100k bonus points, you’ll have 104k Rapid Rewards Points.  Your final 6k points can come from some strategic spending through the Southwest Shopping portal.  The portal will link you directly back to the online store you were going to shop at anyways, but you’ll earn 3 to 10 times the points per dollar spent when you link to it through Southwest’s portal.

The lovely people at Southwest Airlines are smart and realized that people are trying to time their sign ups to earn the Companion Pass in January.  That being said, they don’t usually offer the above mentioned cards at a 50k bonus point level around that time.  These cards are available now however and if you’re interested in getting a companion pass, make it easier on yourself and sign up while they’re easy to get.  Lacey and I didn’t need anywhere near 2 years to fully utilize this reward.  We only needed 10 weeks. …and honestly that was just time spent deciding where to go.  The actual booking of the flights took an hour.  Southwest now flies to the Caribbean, Mexico, Costa Rica, and everywhere in the United States.  Deciding on where to go is maybe the toughest part of earning the Companion Pass.

With flights taken care of for the next year or so, there is suddenly way less pressure to keep signing up for multiple credit cards for free flights.  All you’ll need to focus on now are free hotels. 🙂

Let us know if you have any questions.  We can’t wait to tell you about our upcoming trips that were made possible with the Companion Pass!

Free Flights with Southwest Airlines

Pack your bags! You’re about to get a ton of free travel!


Rewards Points Travel

Points Planning for Maui Part 2

February 21, 2016

It’s time to follow up on our initial Points Planning for Maui post! To recap our progress so far, both Lacey and I signed up for the Chase Hyatt card and received the “2 free nights” reward.  So right now, we have 4 free nights ready to use for Maui (hopefully to be used at the Hyatt Andaz resort).  So while we’re still going to work on getting a couple more nights for free in Maui, we’re going to shift  our focus toward earning our free flights for this trip. Here’s why…

I’ll start off by sharing a very valuable tip that I’ve learned with credit card rewards programs. …they have targeted offers.  This means that the rewards program might randomly email you or snail mail you a reward offer that is more valuable than any other offer that is available to the general public.  Sometimes these targeted offers will literally pop-up when you login to your online account.  My advice for you is to create an online account for every reward program you may ever use.  Even if you aren’t planning on signing up for the program’s card right away, you’re putting yourself in a good position to be possibly targeted for a bad ass offer down the road.

So the next time you’re browsing your favorite points travel sites/blogs, keep in mind that the offers you see on these sites MAY NOT be the best available offer.  You might find a public offer of 35k bonus miles and think that’s the only option, but if you create an online account for that card, you just might be targeted for a higher bonus offer.

Why am I telling all of you this? Well, this very thing just happened to me.  On January 29th, I created an online account for United Airlines “Mileage Plus Explorer” program.  The current public offer for their credit card is only 30k bonus miles.  Ain’t nobody got time fo dat!  Just yesterday, not even a month after creating my Mileage Plus account, I received a snail mail targeted offer for 50k miles. Yay!

Points Planning for Maui offer

You can see that I initially tore this in half and almost threw it away.

Right away, I had a hunch that 50k bonus miles would get us from Boise to Maui.  When I double checked, I found the below flights on United’s website. Looks like if Lacey and I both sign up and receive this reward, we can get to Maui for 45k miles and $11.20 each.  So if all goes well, this is how we’ll get our flights.  Dropping a $20 spot, instead of the $1400+ it would cost if we were to pay in full, seems like a pretty fair swap 🙂

Points Planning for Maui Flights

Right now you might be saying, “well that’s cool for you guys, but what am I gonna do?  I didn’t receive the 50k targeted United offer.”  My response to that is for you to hop on United’s site right when you finish reading this post and create an account.  It took less than a month for me to receive the targeted offer and I’ve heard and read stories of people getting the targeted 50k mile offer right after creating an account.

Another great option right now is the American Airlines 50k bonus offer at this link.  Make sure to go to first and look up flights from your airport to Maui (or wherever you want to go) and make sure 50k miles will cover your trip.  I did a quick browse and saw that the 50k AA bonus would get me to Maui as easily as United.  Lacey and I already received that bonus in the past (which we’re using for this trip) so we can’t sign up for it again.

So hopefully you now have a couple of solid options to get your free flights.  Keep in mind that the American Airlines offer is a limited time offer.  It could expire at any time.  If you think this is the card for you…jump on it now.  Also, the United Mileage card is sponsored by Chase Bank.  Chase Bank is implementing a new rule starting in April that will prevent anyone who has signed up for 5+ credit cards in the past 24 months from being approved for any more Chase cards.  This is a huge deal to all the points travelers of the world.  You can read more on this topic from one of our favorite travel blogs here.

I’ll post another update in a couple months to let you know how we’re progressing with the Maui trip.  Like I said earlier, we’re still shooting for another 1-2 free hotel nights for this trip so I’ll keep you posted when we figure out how we’re going to make that happen.

You all should have a good plan by now for how you’re going to do this trip, but please reach out to us if you have any questions.

Good Luck!


Below are a couple pics from our last trip to Hawaii about 7 years ago…just a couple of crazy kids fallin’ in love 🙂

Lacey in the ocean

Ice cream in Kona

Falling in Love in Hawaii

Sick hat bro! …in my defense, Jason Mraz was really popular back then.