Southwest Rolls Back Point Devaluation With A 25% Award Discount—Act Fast!

Southwest Airlines devalued their points at the beginning of the year and about 43% in 12 years, but for four days they’re letting you increase their value with 25% off on awards.

  • Promo code SAVE25NOW
  • Book by April 15 and travel through September 30
  • Blackout dates are: May 23, May 24, May 27, July 7, July 14, July 21, July 28
  • Valid for travel within the continental US travel only and not available on all flights

If you have currently-booked Southwest Rapid Rewards awards travel, reprice those itineraries to see whether they’re now less expensive – in which case rebook them.

And since there’s no fee to cancel and redeposit points, make any speculative future bookings using current points balances during the promo period. (I wouldn’t make points transfers from Chase Ultimate Rewards to Southwest in order to do speculative bookings.)

Lower redemption prices is better than higher redemption prices, so this is a great opportunity to use up some Rapid Rewards points – though it’s an offer that comes around from time to time rather than the only time they’ve ever done this.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Either they have a website bug, or they are trying to scam their customers.

    For example, look at SJC->BUR on June 3rd. If you put in the code, all of the nonstop wanna get away fares are listed as 7,172 points, minus 25% off, for 5,379 points. Sounds great, right?

    Now try the same search without the coupon. Comes to 5,859 points.

    Screenshots in case the website suddenly changes:

    Do you think this is intentional?

  2. @Andrew, good catch. It will be hard to track down a cause. Probably sloppy programming but it could be on purpose. Airlines purposely have a convoluted charging system so they can try to get more out of their customers. I wonder if the situation will stay the same or if it will change after they receive complaints.

  3. I found a similar example- scum bags
    * suggested retail price
    just like the rag merchants
    Programmer “forgot” to enter the *

  4. Devaluations in fixed value per point programs are so cynical. As ticket prices rise with inflation, the value of outstanding points balances already decreases in real terms. Diluting the nominal value per point is doubling the rate of erosion in previously issued points 🙁

  5. Southwest Twitter is standing by the current behavior and claiming it’s correct. They wrote to me: “this promotion applies to certain base fares within each fare class making this scenario possible. For example: the fare for 5,859 points is not on sale for 25% off, but the 7,172 fare is on sale for 25%.”

    Their Terms and Conditions say no such thing. The relevant portion is: “The 25 percent promotion code savings are valid for one-way or round trip Wanna Get Away® and Wanna Get Away Plus® fares booked with Rapid Rewards points during the Booking Period, flown during the Travel Period, and are applied before taxes and fees. Seats and days are limited.”

    @Gary, want to run

  6. @Gary, want to update your post before other readers of your blog waste their time on this?

  7. FYI, Southwest seems to have “solved” the problem a few hours later by raising the non-coupon prices.

    What a delightful business practice.

Comments are closed.