Best Travel Rewards Credit Card for Domestic Travel
Our Detailed Review
Though not one of the most raved about travel rewards credit cards on financial sites like Credit Karma and Nerd Wallet, we think the Southwest Rapid Rewards card is a bit of a hidden gem. The folks at Value Penguin and The Simple Dollar backed us up on this one as well! Southwest currently flies to 90 destinations throughout the United States, Mexico, and the Caribbean, offering more than 3,800 flights a day and adding new locations all of the time. So if you regularly travel domestically, the Southwest Rapid Rewards card is an excellent choice.
Application Process: Just apply online at applynow.chase.com. And if you're already a Rapid Rewards member and received a promotion in the mail, simply have your Rapids Rewards number and the offer code ready to enter at the time of application in order to speed up the process.
Rewards: Earn 2 points per $1 spent on Southwest and AirTran, and 1 point per $1 spent on on everything else. No blackout dates or seat restrictions when you redeem points, and also expect to receive other perks such as free bags and no change fees. Plus receive 3,000 points annually with each card member anniversary (in our opinion, that completely offsets the $69 annual fee).
If you'd like to double the amount of points you earn with each cardmember anniversary and earn 1,500 qualifying points towards A-List and A-List Preferred for each $10,000 you spend, check out the Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Credit Card for an annual fee of $99 per year. And for those of you big spenders, Southwest also offers an unlimited Companion Pass which allows your significant other to fly free with you for up to two years once you earn 110,000 points in one year. Long story short, Southwest has a lot to offer.
APR: The annual APR is a variable rate of 16.49% to 23.49%, based on your creditworthiness, with a 25.49% APR for cash advances. Pretty standard within the financial services industry.
Annual Fee: Expect to pay a $69 annual fee. While Southwest does not offer a $0 introductory fee like most airlines, the recurring annual charge is lower than most other travel rewards credit cards.
Bonus Offers: Earn 50,000 Southwest Rapid Rewards points after spending $2,000 in the first 3 months, which can you get one round trip flight (maybe even two depending on the location). Few travel rewards cards offer such a large sign on bonus.