Southwest started a promo back in February that award double points AND double tier qualifying points through May 15th. It appears they decided to extend it yesterday for another month and I’m not exactly sure why.
That means the following earning levels continue for another month:
Wanna Get Away Fares: 12 points per dollar instead of 6.
Anytime Fares: 20 points instead of 10.
Business Select Fares: 24 points instead of 12.
The double tier qualifying points count towards A-list or A-list preferred status. If you’re a regular Southwest flier, both of these have reasonable benefits. A-list members (35,000 tier qualifying points or 25 one-way flights) earn:
A-List preferred members (70,000 tier qualifying points or 50 one-way flights) earn all the above benefits plus a 100% earning bonus and free wifi.
If you were flying Southwest enough to earn A-List preferred status, the 100% earning bonus and free wifi add up to substantial earning/savings.
The thing I don’t get is why Southwest decided to extend this promo. They’re now awarding heavy bonuses for part of the summer travel season. And, while Southwest generally has pretty good fare sales throughout the year, they don’t specialize in promos that earn more points. I can’t remember something like this in quite some time, though they’ve only had the new program format a couple of years.
Could it be that Southwest has decided to ramp up its pursuit of business travelers even more? When they came out with Business Select fares they solved some issues business travelers were concerned with. They essentially created assigned seating by always guaranteeing Business Select passengers they would be one of the first people on the plane. They’ve now added wi-fi and have had priority security lane access for a while.
By awarding double tier qualifying points they have to be assuming they’ll grow the ranks of their elite members. And, ordinary double points is a heck of incentive for the casual flier based on Southwest’s flexibility to book any flight using points.
The summer travel season is generally busier and more expensive. There’s been a few comments that things are just a little bit cheaper this year but I still expect most planes to be full this summer. Extending this promo into part of the summer season is great for consumers, I’m just not sure why Southwest is continuing to be so generous.
HT: Deals We Like