If you’re a frequent traveler, an easy way to earn Southwest miles or points is via car rentals.
There are currently eight different car rental companies that allow you to earn between 1,200 and 2,400 Southwest Rapid Rewards points when you rent a car starting at Southwest.com. Some Southwest car rental partners also provide you a discount in addition to points when renting the cars!
8 Southwest Car Rental Partners
Southwest car rental partners include:
- Alamo – Earn 2X points
- Avis – Up to 2,400 points + 35% savings
- Budget – Up to 2,400 points + 30% off
- Dollar – 1,200 points + 10% off
- Hertz – Up to 2,400 points + 30% off
- National – Up to 2,400 points + 25% off
- Payless – 1,200 points + 10% off
- Thrifty – 1,200 points + 10% off
Most of these deals are good through January 31, 2020.
The first 600 points you earn on each rental do qualify for the 125,000 points you will need to earn the Southwest Companion Pass, which lets one person fly nearly free with you for up to two years.
The remaining points are considered bonus points, which DO NOT count toward the Companion Pass, but can be used for free travel.
Note: For Payless, the fine print does not state that any of the points are considered bonus points, so the entire 1,200 points may qualify for the Companion Pass.
But There’s One Caveat…
To earn the points, you will be charged an additional fee (what they call a surcharge) per day between $1-$1.50 and up to a maximum $8.
It’s nothing huge, but definitely something to be aware of BEFORE you rent your car through Southwest!
Is Renting a Car Through Southwest the Best Deal?
Before you decide on Southwest, shop around, as Southwest does not necessarily have the lowest pricing when it comes to renting cars.
Be sure you compare prices with sites like Priceline, Expedia or even going to the car rental website directly.
Keep in mind, with Southwest, you will be earning points to fly free, so be sure to factor that into the equation of whether it’s worth the higher price.
How to Book a Southwest Car Rental
- Log on to your Rapid Rewards account at Southwest.com
- Visit the links above or go to Car/Book a Car or Car Offers in the Main Menu and click on your car rental company of choice.
- Enter your desired dates. The promo code usually automatically populates for you when you start at these pages on Southwest.
- Fill out the information complete your car rental.
- Make sure you meet the requirements of the promotion, such as number of days required and type of car.
- Pay with your Southwest credit cards and earn even more points! The Southwest cards let you earn double points on car rental purchases with partner companies.
- When you go to pick up your vehicle, make sure you have your Southwest Rapid Rewards number and be sure the rental agent has entered it into the system. You’ll also want to have any promo code that comes up on the screen when you click the car rental booking link.
- Your points should show up within a few weeks of completing your car rental.
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