2021 Review: The Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business Credit Card – The Best Southwest Business Card
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The Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business Credit Card offers quite a bit for traveling business owners. It’s rewarding and has a nice selection of benefits, but to get the most out of the card, you’ll want to earn A-List status with Southwest.
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Our Rating: 5 Out of 5 Stars
We give the Southwest® Rapid Rewards® Performance Business Credit Card 5 out of 5 Stars. It saves you both time and money as long as you take advantage of its perks and redeem for award flights.
Why We Like It
- 4X points per dollar for Southwest Airlines purchases
- 2X points per dollar for internet, cable, phone, and social media and search engine advertising
- 9,000 anniversary points annually
- 80,000 bonus points for spending $5,000 in the first 3 months
- Global Entry/TSA PreCheck application fee credit
- Four upgraded boardings per year (when available)
- Free employee cards
- No foreign transaction fee
Why It Could Be Better
- No in-flight discount
- Earn A-List status to get the most out of the card
The Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business card has a lot of what traveling business owners look for in airline cards. The account anniversary bonus is nice, and so are the four upgraded boardings, Global Entry/TSA PreCheck application fee credit, and travel protections, but there’s no standard priority boarding or in-flight discount.
It accomplishes what airline cards should: save you both time at the airport and money on Southwest flights. It even offers a pretty expansive selection of bonus categories.
Earning A-List status will give you the whole package, providing priority boarding as well as a 25% point bonus and a few more bells and whistles. However, you need to spend a fair bit of time and money with Southwest to qualify.
You can also share the card with your employees at no additional cost, and spend overseas without incurring a fee.
Southwest offers a number of cards to choose from, so how do you choose the best Southwest credit card for you? Take a look at a few Southwest card options that could help you fly for free.
Insider Advice: Getting the Most Out of Your Card
- Fly Southwest: You’ll earn the most points when you fly with Southwest: 4X points per dollar for Southwest purchases from the card, plus more depending on what kind of fare you’re flying. Once you earn enough points, redeem for award flights to get the best value.
- Pay for your phone, internet, and cable: Not only will you earn points for flying, but also for utility purchases. The card also earns rewards for social media and search engine advertising.
- Become a Southwest A-List member: Becoming an A-List member will get you even better perks, including priority boarding. The Performance Business card earns 1,500 Tier Qualifying Points (TQPs) for every $10,000 spent, up to 15,000 TQPs per year. To qualify for A-List, you either need 35,000 TQPs or 25 one-way flights in a calendar year, but it sort of completes the card. It adds priority boarding, a 25% point bonus, priority check-in, security lane access, and more.
- Don’t forget your anniversary: Every year after your first year as a cardholder you’ll get 9,000 anniversary points to put towards your next flight. 9,000 points clocks in at about $135 worth (at 1.5 cents per point).
- Apply for Global Entry/TSA PreCheck: Global Entry and TSA PreCheck will get you through airport security faster. Global Entry will let you skip immigration lines if you’re returning to the country, and it includes TSA PreCheck.
- Take advantage of the in-flight WiFi: If you have to send a last-minute report or touch up an article while you fly, you can use one of your 365 annual $8 in-flight WiFi credits to do so.
- Fly in comfort: Four times per year, you can upgrade your boarding to A1–A15 and be reimbursed for the cost. You can do so at the departure gate or ticket counter on the day of your flight.
- Give your employees cards of their own: You can hand out employee cards for free, plus set spending limits and monitor activity.
You’ll earn more rewards depending on the fare level you’re flying, in addition to the 4X points from the card. Wanna Get Away fares offer an additional 6X points per dollar, Anytime fares offer 10X, and Business Select fares offer 12X points.
If you add that to the points earned from the card, and assuming Southwest points are worth 1.5 cents, the card would earn a cash back equivalent of 15%–24% for Southwest flights.
Southwest flyers can redeem points for:
- Southwest flights (best value)
- Hotel stays and rental cars with Rapid Rewards partners
- International flights on global carriers
- Gift cards
- Exclusive membership experiences
To get the best value, redeem points for Southwest flights. There are no blackout dates to keep track of, and your points won’t expire.
How do I redeem for Southwest flights?
It’s simple enough. Find your way to Southwest’s website and search for the flight you want. Choose the option to say you’d rather use points instead of dollars and you’re good to go.
Take a look at a few examples of one-way flights to get an idea of what Southwest points could be worth.
|Flight||Point Cost||Dollar Cost||Point Value|
|DEN to LAX||6,778 + $5.60||$111||1.64 cents|
|SEA to IND||23,687 + $5.60||$330||1.39 cents|
|ROC to MCO||10,870 + $5.60||$164||1.51 cents|
|HOU to CMH||24,999 + $5.60||$347||1.39 cents|
|BOS to ATL||13,804 + $5.60||$202||1.46 cents|
Keep in mind that your values won’t be exactly the same as the ones above. Flight prices are usually pretty volatile, and factors like when and where you’re flying affect the price. But based on the numbers above, it seems Southwest points are relatively valuable.
Take the flight from Denver to LA, for example. Assuming you’re earning 10X points (4X from the card, 6X from the Wanna Get Away fare) you’d see a cash back equivalent of 16.4%. That’s a pretty solid return.
For the flight from Seattle to Indianapolis, earning the same number of points, you’d see a cash back equivalent of 13.9%. While lower, that too wouldn’t be a bad equivalent to see.
The Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business card comes with a fairly extensive list of benefits. Between the Global Entry/TSA PreCheck application fee credit, anniversary points, and the selection of travel protections, any traveling business owner could find something of value here.
- Global Entry/TSA PreCheck application fee credit: Charge the Global Entry ($100) or TSA PreCheck ($85) application fee to your card and you’ll be reimbursed for the cost. You can do so every four years.
- Four annual upgraded boardings: Every year you can be reimbursed for four upgraded boardings (A1–A15) on your card. They must be purchased at the departure gate or ticket counter on the day of your trip.
- 9,000 anniversary points: Every year on your cardmember anniversary you’ll receive 9,000 points.
- Tier Qualifying Points: For every $10,000 you spend, you’ll earn 1,500 TQPs, up to 15,000 per year. TQPs go towards earning A-List status, which comes with additional perks including priority boarding, a 25% point bonus, priority check-in, security lane access, and more.
- In-flight WiFi credits: You’ll get 365 $8 WiFi tokens to use each year. They’ll show up as statement credits when you use your card to pay for WiFi on Southwest flights.
- Free employee cards: Add employees to the account at no additional charge. You can set spending limits and monitor each card.
- Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver: Get coverage for theft and collision damage of rental cars if you decline the agency’s own coverage and pay for the entire rental with the card. This coverage is primary when renting for business purposes.
- Roadside Dispatch: Call 1-800-847-2869 for help on the road, like tire changes and jumpstarts. Third-party fees will apply.
- Travel Accident Insurance: You’re covered up to $500,000 for accidental death and dismemberment when traveling by air, bus, train, or cruise.
- Lost Luggage Reimbursement: If you or a family member has checked or carry-on luggage that’s damaged or lost by a common carrier, you could be reimbursed for up to $3,000 per passenger.
- Baggage Delay Insurance: If your bags don’t arrive when you do, you can be reimbursed up to $100 per day for three days for essential items like toiletries and clothing.
- Travel and Emergency Assistance Services: Contact the Benefit Administrator for legal or medical referrals if you run into trouble away from home. Some other travel and emergency situations are covered as well.
- Purchase Protection: Eligible new purchases are covered for 120 days against damage and theft, up to $10,000 per claim and $50,000 per account.
- Extended Warranty Protection: Get up to one year added to eligible manufacturer’s warranties of three years or less.
The Terms & Fees
|Purchase APR||Balance Transfer APR||Cash Advance APR|
|15.99% - 22.99% Variable||15.99% - 22.99% Variable||24.99% Variable|
|Annual Fee||Foreign Transaction Fee|
|Balance Transfer Fee||Cash Advance Fee|
|Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each balance transfer, whichever is greater||Either $15 or 5% of the amount of each transaction, whichever is greater|
|Penalty APR||Late Fee||Returned Payment Fee|
|Up to 29.99%||See Terms||See Terms|
The Bottom Line
The Southwest® Rapid Rewards® Performance Business Credit Card provides good value for small business owners who travel relatively frequently. Redeem for award flights, take advantage of the Global Entry/TSA PreCheck credit and upgraded boardings, and reach A-List status to get the most from this card. That should provide enough value to cover the annual fee.
While it’s unfortunate you need to qualify for A-List status to get the full effect (compared to some other options), even if you don’t, you should get plenty from this card.
If Southwest isn’t your preferred airline, check out the best airline credit cards to find one that might suit you better.
How Do I Apply for the Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business Card?
Follow the link below to visit Chase’s website. From there, you can follow prompts to reach an application. You can safely fill out the required info, and Chase will typically get back to you instantly with its decision.
What Credit Scores Do I Need to Qualify for the Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business Card?
It’s recommended you have good credit before applying.
To qualify for good credit, your FICO scores would have to be at least 670, or your VantageScores would have to be at least 700.
But keep in mind credit card issuers look at more information. Things like income and your monthly rent or mortgage payments play a role in deciding your creditworthiness. The additional information could lead to your approval even if your scores aren’t high enough. But that also means you could be denied even if they are.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I link the Southwest Performance Business card to Rapid Rewards?
It’s a pretty simple process. Head over to your Rapid Rewards account and click on the “Manage Cards” tab. From there, you can enter your credit card number and the link should be established.
Getting ready for a trip? Take a look at how Southwest cards could help you fly for free.
What’s the difference between the Southwest Premier Business card and the Performance Business card?
The Southwest® Rapid Rewards® Premier Business Credit Card (Review) is the lesser form of the Performance Business card. With a lower annual fee, it provides fewer rewards, less impressive benefits, and doesn’t really offer much value for the cost of the card.
Alternatives to the Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business Card
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The information related to Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card has been collected by Credit Card Insider and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer or provider of this product.
The information related to The Business Platinum Card® from American Express has been collected by Credit Card Insider and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer or provider of this product.
Do you use the Southwest Rapid Rewards Performance Business card? How has it improved your business trips? Let us know in the comments below!Are all airline card reward programs equal? Here are a few we recommend. The Ultimate Guide to Air Miles Credit Cards (Plus Our 7 Favorites)
Evan graduated from SUNY Oswego with a degree in journalism and creative writing. In his professional writing career, he strives for precision and comprehension in his work. He’s written news articles, blog posts, and copy, working across a slew of different mediums. With in-depth research and great care for accuracy and detail, he now works to bring you the most up-to-date credit information.
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