Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Card Review

We want to help you make more informed decisions. Some links on this page — clearly marked — may take you to a partner website and may result in us earning a referral commission. For more information, see How We Make Money.   Terms apply to American Express benefits and offers. Enrollment may be required for some American Express benefits and offers. Visit americanexpress.com to learn more.
Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card
Learn More externa link icon
Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card
Editor’s Score: (3.8/5)
Learn more externa link icon At our partner’s secure site. See Rates & Fees, Terms Apply.
Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card
Editor’s Score: (3.8/5)
  • Intro offer:
    Earn 50,000 points
  • Annual fee:
    $149
  • Regular APR:
    18.24% – 25.24% Variable
  • Recommended credit score:
    670-850 (Good to Excellent)
Rewards rate:

Earn 3X points on Southwest® purchases. Earn 2X points on local transit and commuting, including rideshare. Earn 2X points on internet, cable, phone services, and select streaming.

NextAdvisor’s Take

Pros
  • Welcome offer
  • Bonus points at cardmember anniversary
  • Travel benefits for Southwest flights
  • No foreign transaction fees
Cons
  • Rewards not valuable if you don’t fly Southwest often
  • $149 annual fee
The Bottom Line
For loyal Southwest flyers, the Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Card can enhance the travel experience when flying the airline. It comes with perks like a $75 Southwest booking credit, four upgraded boardings per year and 25% back on in-flight purchases. It can even fast-track you towards earning a Companion Pass, one of the most coveted benefits for Southwest’s frequent flyers.

Additional Card Details

  • 7,500 points per cardmember anniversary
  • $75 annual Southwest travel credit
  • 25% off in-flight purchases on Southwest
  • Earn Southwest’s Companion Pass faster
  • 4 boarding upgrades per year, depending on availability
  • Earn 1,500 tier qualifying points (TQPs) towards A-List status for every $10,000 spent
  • Travel protections

Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Card Full Review

Card Type

The Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Card is a co-branded travel card. It’s issued by Chase, but you’ll earn miles toward Southwest’s loyalty program.

Annual Fee

This card has a $149 annual fee.

Welcome Offer

Earn 50,000 points after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first three months.

Rewards

You can earn rewards on both Southwest and everyday purchases with this card:

  • 3x points on Southwest purchases
  • 2x points on local transit and commuting, including rideshare
  • 2x points on internet, cable, phone services, and select streaming
  • 2x points on Rapid Rewards hotel and car rental partners
  • 1x points on everything else

Fees 

Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority card has a variable APR of 18.24% – 25.24%. There are no foreign transaction fees. Late or returned payments may incur a fee up to $40 and result in a penalty APR of 29.99%.

How to Use the Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Card

We recommend using this card to book all of your Southwest flights since you’ll get 3x points per dollar on those purchases. These points will add up over time, and you can later redeem them for travel, as well as for gift cards, merchandise and even car rentals. Southwest Rapid Rewards points never expire.

If you’re looking to build up a points balance to redeem with other airlines or hotels, consider a card with more flexible rewards, such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, for everyday purchases instead. Like other co-branded airline cards, the Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Card earns only the airline’s own currency. 

With this card, you’ll get 25% off in-flight purchases while flying Southwest Airlines. You can use this perk to get discounts on food, drinks and beverages.

Start maximizing your value early by spending $1,000 in the first three months from account opening to earn the 40,000 points welcome offer. You’ll also get 7,500 points on your cardmember anniversary each year.

Make sure you spend only what you can afford to pay off to avoid taking on interest. Interest on any balance you carry accrues at a variable APR between 18.24% and 25.24%, so you’ll want to pay your bills on time and in full each month. 

There aren’t any foreign transaction fees, so this card will be a good choice for international travel when it’s safe to do so again. 

Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Card Compared to Other Cards

Our Choice
Learn More externa link icon
Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card

Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card

Editor’s Score: (3.8/5)
  • Intro offer:
    Earn 50,000 points
  • Annual fee:
    $149
  • Regular APR:
    18.24% – 25.24% Variable
  • Recommended credit:
    670-850 (Good to Excellent)
  • Learn more externa link icon At our partner’s secure site See Rates & Fees, Terms Apply.
Learn More externa link icon
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Editor’s Score: (4.5/5)
  • Intro offer:
    60,000 points
  • Annual fee:
    $95
  • Regular APR:
    18.24% – 25.24% Variable
  • Recommended credit:
    670-850 (Good to Excellent)
  • Apply Now externa link icon At Chase’s secure site
Learn More externa link icon
Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card

Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card

Editor’s Score: (3.85/5)
  • Intro offer:
    40,000 Miles
  • Annual fee:
    $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $99
  • Regular APR:
    18.74%-27.74% Variable
  • Recommended credit:
    670-850 (Good to Excellent)
  • Learn more externa link icon At our partner’s secure site See Rates & Fees, Terms Apply.

Is Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Card Right for You?

Southwest Airlines flyers will benefit from this card’s perks while earning points that can be redeemed for free travel. However, if you don’t fly Southwest frequently, this card may not be worth its annual fee.

Depending on availability, you can get up to four upgraded boardings per year — in practical terms, this means using the card to pay for boarding among the first 15 passengers, and then getting a refund. This is especially important on Southwest, since the airline does not assign seats, and boarding among the first can mean snagging the seats you want. Ordinarily, upgraded boarding costs between $30 and $50 per round-trip upgrade, depending on the itinerary, so this perk can be worth up to $200 per year.

Additionally, you’ll get a $75 Southwest travel credit that you can use on most Southwest purchases — including tickets, but excluding boarding upgrades (Southwest does not have first class, so there are no class upgrades) and in-flight purchases. This benefit alone can cut the cost of the annual fee in half.

The card does not come with complimentary lounge access, unlike other co-branded airline credit cards, but Southwest does not have airport lounges. 

The annual fee is $149 per year. If you do not fly Southwest with some frequency, or are loyal to another airline, there are better rewards cards out there for comparable fees — both co-branded airline cards and travel cards that earn points transferable to airlines.    

EDITORIAL INDEPENDENCE

As with all of our credit card reviews, our analysis is not influenced by any partnerships or advertising relationships.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does the Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Card have an annual fee?

Yes, this card has a $149 annual fee.

What credit score do you need to get the Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Card?

You’ll need a credit score between 690-850 to get approved for this card.