Southwest Rapid Rewards Devaluation Again! This Time No Notice

Southwest has mildly devalued its Rapid Rewards points by about 3%. What's alarming isn't the size of the devaluation, it's that:

Southwest gave no notice, only some sleuthing by FlyerTalkers sussed it out
This is the third devaluation in third years, something which is completely unnecessary for a revenue-based program like Southwest

The Devaluations
Southwest points used to be redeemable for any "Wanna Get Away?" fare at a rate of 60 points per dollar of the fare.

10 Reasons to Get the Chase Sapphire Preferred

The Chase Sapphire Preferred card is one the best travel cards on the market at the moment.

How One Man & His Wife Got $4k in Flights from a Southwest Companion Pass & You Can Too

My law school buddy, Ray, asked to write a piece about his experience getting $4,000 worth of flights for $257 with the Southwest Companion Pass. Of course, I said yes because I have never been able to personally review the best deal in travel hacking. I've added a section at the bottom about how you can get the Southwest Companion Pass today and copy what Ray and his wife have done.

Free Giveaway Friday: $51 Southwest Gift Card

Longtime reader Caveman is offering one lucky reader a $51 Southwest gift card.

Southwest gift cards are fully transferable and don’t expire. There are two ways to enter, and you can enter both ways.

How to Designate Seven Companions During the Life of Your Southwest Companion Pass

If you live at an airport served by Southwest, the Southwest Companion Pass is one of the best deals in travel. Every time you fly Southwest--whether on a cash or award ticket--your designated companion flies for free plus taxes: $5.60 one way in the United States and a little more internationally.

Here's how to open two credit cards and get the Southwest Companion Pass for almost all of 2016 and 2017.

The Southwest Companion Pass previously allowed three changes to your designation of the companion. Now you get three changes per calendar year.

Free Giveaway Friday: $51 Southwest Gift Card that Never Expires

Longtime reader Caveman is offering one lucky reader a $51 Southwest gift card.

Southwest gift cards are fully transferable and don’t expire. There are two ways to enter, and you can enter both ways.

Book by Tomorrow: Nationwide $49+ Sale on Southwest

Southwest is offering $49, $99, $129, and $149 one way fares if you book by tomorrow (June 4) and fly between August 25 and December 16. Fridays, Sundays, September 3-5, September 7, and November 20 - December 1, 2015 are blacked out.

For other restrictions and all the city pairs, see the sale page. Here are the $49 fares from Baltimore:

There are even a few sale prices under $49.

If you prefer to fly with another carrier, check to see if they are matching the sale.

Free Giveaway: $51 Southwest Gift Card that Never Expires!

Longtime reader Cave Man is offering one lucky reader a $51 Southwest gift card.

Southwest gift cards are fully transferable and don’t expire. There are two ways to enter, and you can enter both ways.

World’s Easiest Southwest Companion Pass

Southwest is offering a Companion Pass for the rest of 2015 to Atlanta residents who register for the promotion and fly three roundtrips that originate in Atlanta by May 17, and you can get in on it too.

If you have a regular companion and want to fly within the continental United States, Caribbean, and Mexico, the Southwest Companion Pass is the best deal in travel. The Southwest Companion Pass allows you to designate a companion who flies for government taxes ($5.60 domestically) every time you fly Southwest--whether your ticket is a paid ticket or award ticket.

Southwest Announces Massive Devaluation, Effective April 17

Southwest currently has a purely fixed-value rewards program. For every dollar of the base fare, you have to redeem 70 Rapid Rewards to get your ticket (plus you pay a $5.60 per direction government tax on each redemption.)

That's about to get worse, much worse in my opinion.
Current Rapid Rewards Scheme
Let's look at an example. Here are the pries for tickets from Los Angeles to Tampa this March. They vary greatly by day from $207 to $334 to $607.

If you select a day with $211 fares, not all fares that day are $211.