The Southwest Business Credit Card Review for 2021

Travel in style with the Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier—the best business credit card out there for Southwest frequent flyers.

Overview

Credit Card

Credit Card

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Credit Card

Great For: Best for loyal Southwest flyers and frequent travelers who are looking for a business credit card with one of the most generous sign-up bonuses we've seen

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Credit Card
Apply Now
on Chase's secure website
Welcome offerafter you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 monthsRewards ratedepending on where you spendAnnual feeMinimum credit
60,000 points2X or 1X points99660

If you’re looking to be rewarded for your loyalty to Southwest airlines, then the Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier is the very best business credit card to do so. With the Southwest business credit card, you’ll have the opportunity to access a 60,000-point welcome offer and potentially even a companion pass, allowing you to pick one person to fly with you for free. If you travel frequently and always with Southwest, that could save you thousands of dollars.

Southwest Business Credit Card Rewards: Welcome Offer

The Southwest business credit card has a great welcome bonus.

Currently, if you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first three months of card membership, you’ll earn a full 60,000 Rapid Rewards Points.

You can redeem your Southwest business credit card bonus for free flights at a variable rate, but they’re usually worth around 1.5 cents for each point.

This means your 60,000-point Southwest business credit card bonus can be worth around $900 in free flights—and as we’ll see later in the article, it could be worth a lot more.

Additionally, the Southwest business card also offers a pretty unique perk of an anniversary bonus—6,000 bonus points every year on your account opening anniversary.

Southwest Business Credit Card Rewards: Ongoing Offer

The Southwest Rapid Rewards Business Premier credit card, offered in the Chase business credit card suite, earns at the following rates:

  • 2 Southwest Rapid Rewards Points per $1 spent on:
    • Southwest flights
    • Southwest’s hotel partners
    • Southwest’s rental car partners
  • 1 point per $1 elsewhere

Southwest Business Credit Card Annual Fee

The Southwest airlines business credit card has a $99 annual fee that kicks in immediately.

However, the Southwest business card has no foreign transaction fee (a big plus when it comes to travel business credit cards).

Plus, all additional employee cards that you attach to your Southwest business credit card account will be free.

Is the Southwest Business Credit Card Right for You?

Get the Southwest Business Credit Card if:

  • You fly Southwest pretty much exclusively.
  • You want an excellent signup bonus that will help you save on your business travel.
  • You’ve earned around 50,000 Southwest Points this year already (explained below).
  • You want to earn a Companion Pass for free travel for one other person.

Skip the Southwest Business Credit Card if:

  • You like having a choice in airlines.
  • You don’t want to pay an annual fee.
  • You’d rather earn cash back.

Why Go For the Southwest Business Credit Card?

Welcome Bonus

Why is the Southwest business card one of the best business credit cards on the market?

To reiterate, the welcome Southwest business credit card bonus is one of the main advantages of doing your business spending on this card.

Just for spending $3,000 during your first three months with the card—an average of just $1,000 a month, if we’re counting—you’ll earn a whopping 60,000 Rapid Rewards Points.

This Southwest business credit card bonus will not only send you more than halfway towards earning a Southwest companion pass, but it will also earn you upwards of $900 worth of free Southwest flights.

Anniversary Bonus

And that’s not the only Southwest business credit card bonus you’ll gain access to as a cardholder.

You’ll also earn a yearly Southwest business credit card bonus of 6,000 Rapid Rewards Points on every account opening anniversary.

This kind of recurring bonus is rare for a credit card, business or otherwise. So, if you want to see an influx of travel rewards from year-to-year, then the Southwest business credit card will be one of your best and only options.

High Point Value

One more notable perk to spending with the Southwest business credit card will be the high value that Southwest Rapid Rewards are redeemable for.

Generally speaking, travel rewards points tend to redeem at a value of around 1 cent per mile. Meanwhile, though Southwest Rapid Rewards Points will vary in worth, they tend to hover around 1.5 cents per point.

This means that both of the Southwest business credit card bonuses will be worth more than they might seem initially. For instance, the welcome bonus will be worth around $900 of free Southwest travel, while the recurring anniversary bonuses will each be worth around $90 of free Southwest travel.

Companion Pass

The best reason to get the Southwest business credit card? Southwest Airlines’ companion pass.

If you complete 100 qualifying one-way flights or earn 110,000 Rapid Rewards Points in one calendar year, you’ll get a companion pass valid for the remainder of the current year as well as all of next year. Timing it correctly could mean that you get 2 years worth of free travel for someone else.

This means that for every Southwest flight you pay for, you can bring someone else—a friend, partner, spouse, kid, a stranger on the street—for free. (Plus, you can change your designated companion up to three times, so it’s relatively breakup-proof.)

All revenue flights purchased (i.e. flights booked not on points, travel passes, etc.) through Southwest Airlines, purchases put on your Southwest business credit card, and your base points earned contribute to the companion pass. However, if you transfer points from Chase’s Ultimate Rewards system, those do not count towards the companion pass. So, for example, if you have the Chase Sapphire Reserve personal card, you can’t transfer those welcome bonus points to book on Southwest and get those points to qualify for your companion pass.

Southwest Business Credit Card: Downsides to Consider

Sub-Par Sustained Rewards

Put simply, you won’t be able to see a huge return with the Southwest business credit card’s sustained rewards program.

And as generous as the Southwest business credit card bonuses are, a rewards rate of just 2 points for Southwest purchases and just 1 point everywhere else simply doesn’t stack up to other business travel credit cards.

If you’re searching for a business credit card that will give you high returns for your day-to-day business spending, then the Southwest business credit card probably isn’t your best bet.

Limited Rewards Redemption

Plus, the rewards that you do earn through the Southwest business credit card will only be redeemable for very specific things—flights, rental cars, and hotels through Southwest and their network of partners.

As such, when you’re redeeming your Rapid Rewards Points, you’ll have to choose from limited vendors, and won’t be able to choose based on which vendors offers you the best deal.

With a more general travel rewards card, you’ll be able to redeem your rewards as statement credits put towards travel purchases from any travel provider that offers you the best deal.

Annual Fee

Perhaps most notably, you’ll have to pay an annual fee to be a Southwest business credit cardholder.

And $99 per year is no small price.

Granted, the anniversary bonus—worth around $90 in free travel—will nearly balance out the cost of the annual fee. That said, there are many business travel cards that won’t charge you a cent to be a cardholder.

Top Alternatives to the Southwest Business Credit Card

Credit Card

Credit Card

Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card
5Fundera Score

Great For: Point redemption rewards

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  • 100,000 point signup bonus if you spend $15K in first 3 months
  • 3x or 1x points depending on how you spend
Credit Card
Apply Now
on Chase's secure website
Welcome offerafter you spend $15,000 in first 3 monthsRewards ratefor the first $150,000, then 1x pointsAnnual feeMinimum credit
100,000 points1 or 3 points95700
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Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business
4.9Fundera Score

Great For: Simple travel rewards

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  • Earn 2 miles per $1 on every purchase
  • Earn a 50,000 mile sign-up bonus
  • No foreign transaction fees
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Welcome offeronce you spend $4,500 on purchases within 3 months from account openingRewards rateon every purchaseAnnual feefirst year, then $95Minimum credit
50,000 miles2 points0660
Sally Lauckner
Editor-in-Chief at Fundera

Sally Lauckner

Sally Lauckner is the editor-in-chief of the Fundera Ledger and the editorial director at Fundera.

Sally has over a decade of experience in print and online journalism. Previously she was the senior editor at SmartAsset—a Y Combinator-backed fintech startup that provides personal finance advice. There she edited articles and data reports on topics including taxes, mortgages, banking, credit cards, investing, insurance, and retirement planning. She has also held various editorial roles at AOL.com, Huffington Post, and Glamour magazine. Her work has also appeared in Marie Claire, Teen Vogue, and Cosmopolitan magazines. 

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