Earn Southwest Companion Pass with the increased 125k sign-up bonus for the Performance Business credit card

Chase has just increased the sign-up bonus for the Southwest Performance Business credit card to 70,000 after $5,000 spending spend in the first 3 months, with an additional 30,000 points after a total of $25,000 spending in the first 6 months.  So factoring in the bonus and the spending thresholds required, you'd be earning 125k points, which qualifies you for Southwest's coveted Companion Pass through December 2021!

What is the Southwest Companion Pass?

The Southwest Companion Pass is the benefit that allows you to choose one person to fly with you, free of airline charges (does not include taxes and fees from $5.60 one-way) every time you purchase or redeem points for a flight. To qualify, simply fly 100 qualifying one-way flights or earn 125,000 qualifying points (points earned from credit card purchases do count) in a calendar year, and you’ll earn Companion Pass for the following full calendar year, plus the remainder of the year in which you earned it.

Card benefits

The card will require a hefty $25k in spending in the first 6 months in order to earn the 125k bonus and the Companion Pass, but if you've got any huge purchases coming up like planning for a wedding, this would be the perfect opportunity for you to not only secure that Companion Pass, but also a crap ton of points.  Southwest Rapid Rewards points are valued at around 1.4 cents each, so the 125k is equivalent to about $1,750 towards flights.  The $199 annual fee is not waived for the first year, but the card does come with the following benefits:

  • 3x on Southwest purchases
  • 2x social media and search engine advertising; internet, cable, and phone services
  • 1x on all other purchases
  • Receive 9,000 bonus points after your Cardmember anniversary
  • Four complimentary upgraded boardings per year based on availability
  • Up to 365 WiFi credits per year
  • Global Entry or TSA Pre fee credit up to $100 every 4 years
Aside from the huge sign-up bonus, the above benefits more than mitigate the annual fee.  9,000 anniversary points are worth ~$126, you get a $100 Global Entry credit, and you'll pretty much always have free WiFi when flying with Southwest.  The four free upgraded boardings can also come in handy as you'll likely be able to secure a bulkhead or emergency exit seat.

Who is eligible to apply for the Performance Business card?

This new cardmember bonus offer is not available to either current cardmembers of this business credit card, or previous cardmembers of this business credit card who received a new cardmember bonus for this business credit card within the last 24 months.  This card is also under Chase's dreaded 5/24 rule, meaning that you'll be automatically denied if you've opened 5 or more consumer (not business) credit cards with any and all financial institutions in the past 24 months.  However, since it's a business card, the card does not actually count against 5/24.

Although it's a business credit card, you don't actually have to own a business in order to be eligible for this card.  The thought or plans of starting your own business would technically make you eligible.  It's also possible to qualify if you run a part-time side hustle or a freelance gig.  You must be a for-profit enterprise, but you might be eligible even if you haven’t turned a profit.  Side businesses such as running an AirBNB, selling items on eBay, and even monetizing ads on your YouTube or Blogger account would all in theory qualify as business enterprises.

Bottom line

This is an awesome sign-up offer for the Southwest Performance Business card, assuming you can meet the hefty $25k spending threshold in the first 6 months.  But with a 125k sign-up bonus and possession of the Southwest Companion Pass through the end of 2021, this could be the ideal card for you if you've got any huge purchases coming up.  The card also has a slew of helpful benefits that could definitely offset the annual fee.

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