Travel credits are an easy and efficient way to cut down the annual fee of a credit card. The Southwest Priority Card offers a special $75 travel credit that can help accomplish the task of offsetting your fee to basically nothing.
But there are some rules and limitations that you need to know about with this credit, and in this article I will tell you everything you need to know.
What is the $75 Southwest Priority credit?
The $75 Southwest Priority credit is a special perk offered by the Southwest Priority Credit Card that you can use to cover the cost of Southwest tickets and fees but there are some exceptions.
Keep reading below to find out more!
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Southwest Priority Credit Card
First, here’s the entire rundown of highlights for the Southwest Priority Credit Card.
- Bonus spending:
- 2X Rapid Rewards on Southwest purchases
- 2X Rapid Rewards on hotel and car rental partner purchases.
- 1X Rapid Rewards on all other purchases
- $75 Southwest annual travel credit
- 7,500 anniversary points each year
- Four Upgraded Boardings per year when available.
- 20% back on in-flight drinks, WiFi, messaging, and movies
- No foreign transaction fees
- Earn tier qualifying points towards A-list Status
- $149 annual fee applied to your first billing statement
The great thing about the $75 credit is that it is such an easy way to come out on top in value with his card.
The $149 annual fee can be offset a few different ways. Based on a Rapid Rewards valuation of 1.46 cents per point, the 7,500 anniversary points are worth ~$110.
When you add on the $75 travel credit, all of a sudden you’ve got $185 worth of value coming your way each year which is over $30 more than the annual fee!
And that is without factoring in other benefits like the upgraded boarding, savings on in-flight drinks, etc.
So for somebody who is truly interested in flying with Southwest Airlines, this card has an amazing long-term value proposition.
How to use the credit
The $75 travel credit will be automatically applied to your account after you use it. There is no need to register or to enroll.
The credit should appear on your statement as soon as you purchase posts according to the terms and conditions:
“Statement credit(s) will post to your account the same day your Southwest Airlines purchase posts to your account and will appear on your monthly credit card billing statement within 1-2 billing cycles.”
Be careful about cutting it close when it comes to using your credit at the end of the anniversary year.
That is because the credit will be issued for the year in which the transaction posts to your account.
So if you make a purchase on the last day of the anniversary year and that purchase does not post until a couple of days later, the purchase would be allocated towards the following year’s $75 credit.
According to Chase, “Anniversary year means the year beginning with your account open date through the first statement date after your account open date anniversary, and the 12 monthly billing cycles after that each year.”
This means that if you opened up the card on June 1, 2021 and your 12th statement closed on June 20, 2022, your next credit should reset June 20, 2023.
If you have switched to the card then the account open date is going to be the date that the switch is official within the Chase system.
So let’s say you had the Southwest Plus card originally opened on June 1, 2019. But let’s say that you switched from the Southwest Plus card to the Priority Card on July 15, 2021.
That would mean that the renewal date for the credit is going to be July 15, 2022
If you are unclear on what your anniversary date is, my recommendation would be to call Chase.
Uses for the credits?
Below are different ways that you might think about using your credit. Some of these are permitted while others are not.
Upgraded boardings to Business Select are excluded in the terms and conditions. If you’re not familiar, Southwest does not have a true business class cabin. Instead, they have a type of “business” ticket that offers following perks:
- Guaranteed A1-A15 boarding
- Fly By lane access
- Free premium drink
- 12 Rapid Rewards per dollar spent
- Fully refundable fare
While you cannot use your credit for upgraded boarding, the card does come with four upgraded boardings per year.
In-flight purchases are purchases like alcoholic beverages and Wi-Fi.
Keep in mind that Southwest will give you free snacks and drinks on many flights so there would be no need to use your credit in some cases.
Related: How to get a free drink coupon on Southwest
When you use Rapid Rewards to book a Southwest flight, you will always be subject to fees. These fees can range from $5.60 all the way up to $100 or more if you are flying to certain international destinations.
There are multiple reports of people using their credit to cover these fees so it seems like a commonly accepted way to cash out on your credit.
Many people have had success using the credit on gift card purchases. Personally, I would recommend going with an e-gift card.
Using travel credits on gift cards is not always a guaranteed successful outcome so always be prepared for the possibility that your credit may not trigger after a gift card purchase.
Southwest EarlyBird automatically checks you in 36 hours prior to your departure.
It is a great way to ensure that you will get a good seat, such as a window or aisle seat. However, it will not guarantee you a boarding position in the group a boarding.
According to multiple reports online, the credit can successfully be used for Southwest EarlyBird.
The $75 credit is issued on an anniversary year basis.
According to the terms and conditions, purchases made for upgraded boardings are excluded.
Yes, many people have reported success when using the credit to cover a Southwest EarlyBird purchase.
Yes, many people have had success using the credit for gift cards.
The Southwest Priority $75 travel credit is a great perk because it is easy to use and can be used on a wide variety of expenses that go even beyond airfare. Together with the other perks like the anniversary points and upgraded boarding passes, you can quickly offset the annual fee for this credit card.
Daniel Gillaspia is the Founder of UponArriving.com and creator of the credit card app, WalletFlo. He is a former attorney turned full-time credit card rewards/travel expert and has earned and redeemed millions of miles to travel the globe. Since 2014, his content has been featured in major publications such as National Geographic, Smithsonian Magazine, Forbes, CNBC, US News, and Business Insider. Find his full bio here.
Hi Daniel. Unless Chase screwed up, I believe the $75.00 annual travel credit is per calendar year based on my recent experience. The reason being is my annual membership renewed on Oct 1, 2022, and I received a $75 travel credit on Oct 20 for a flight booked on Oct 12. And today (Feb 16, 2023) I received a second $75 travel credit for a flight booked on Feb 9.