Southwest Airlines Companion Pass – Part 2: Hyatt and Chase Ultimate Reward Points Game Plan

Southwest Airlines Companion Pass Logo

Southwest Airlines Companion Pass – Part 2: Hyatt and Chase Ultimate Reward Points Game Plan

Before reading Part 2, please read Part 1.  As a refresher, to get a Southwest Airlines Companion Pass, you need to earn 110,000 Southwest Airlines miles in a calendar year.  Southwest Airlines has a handy page to track your current Companion Pass status (link).  As of today (October 23, 2014), I need to earn 41,522 more Southwest Airlines miles to obtain a Southwest Airlines Companion Pass good through the rest of 2014 and all of 2015.

Grant Thomas Current Companion Pass Status

Last year, I converted 50,000 Hyatt points into 30,000 Southwest Airlines miles.  I plan to do the same thing this year (image is from last year).

New Hyatt Account Balance

Since I do not have 50,000+ Hyatt points in my account, my mom has graciously offered to move her 2,285 Hyatt points into my account.  To move Hyatt points between accounts, you need to print out this form, fill it out, and send it to Hyatt Gold Passport (email, fax, or snail mail).  The form is pretty straight forward (Hyatt Points Transfer Form – PDF Download), just fill out the form with your Hyatt account info, your friend/family member’s Hyatt account info, the number of points you want to transfer, and your signature.

Hyatt Points Transfer Form

Here are the terms and conditions of the Hyatt points transfer:

Member may combine the necessary number of Hyatt Gold Passport points from their Hyatt Gold Passport account with those in one other specifically designated Hyatt Gold Passport account in order to have a sufficient number of points to redeem a particular award. A single member may only participate in a point combining transaction (transferring or receiving of points) once every 30 days. In order to combine Hyatt Gold Passport points, a member must have an active account and a Hyatt Gold Passport Point Combining Request Form must be completed and signed by both Hyatt Gold Passport members and submitted to Hyatt Gold Passport Customer Service. Forms are available by calling 1-800-51 HYATT (1-800-51-49288) or by visiting goldpassport.com.

Hyatt Gold Passport points may be combined into only one member’s account for redemption. Once issued in the designated member’s name, the member transferring the Hyatt Gold Passport points will relinquish all rights to the combined Hyatt Gold Passport points. Only the number of Hyatt Gold Passport points necessary to redeem the specific award for which the transfer is being requested may be combined.

To book an award reservation using combined points, call Hyatt Gold Passport Customer Service at 1-800-30 HYATT or your nearest Hyatt Worldwide Reservation Center. Hyatt Gold Passport free night awards apply when standard rooms are available at the Hyatt Daily Rate. Standard rooms are defined by each hotel and are not subject to blackout dates. Hyatt Gold Passport free night awards cannot be redeemed for hotel packages.

Hyatt Gold Passport award reservations are subject to the reservation requirements of the individual hotel, such as length of stay. Hyatt Gold Passport award reservations are subject to the cancellation or no-show policy of the individual property at which member is redeeming an award. Hyatt Gold Passport free night awards are valid for standard guest rooms unless specifically stated as part of a particular award. Hyatt Gold Passport awards may be applied only to the guest room and do not apply toward food, beverage (except Passport Escape Awards which include limited meals), incidental expenses or service charges or taxes. A valid credit card is required to guarantee an award stay at time of booking. Additional restrictions may apply. For complete program terms and conditions, please visit goldpassport.com.

Hyatt Hotels & Resorts® encompasses hotels managed, franchised or leased by subsidiaries and affiliates of Hyatt Hotels Corporation. The trademarks Hyatt, ® Hyatt Hotels & Resorts, ® Park Hyatt, ® Andaz, ® Grand Hyatt, ® Hyatt Regency, ® Hyatt Place, ® Hyatt House, ™ Hyatt Gold Passport, ® Hyatt Residence Club, ® and related marks are trademarks of Hyatt Corporation. ©2012 Hyatt Corporation. All rights reserved.

I chose to email the form to Hyatt, so I scanned the form into a PDF and sent an email to goldpassport@hyatt.com, along with some info on the transfer.  I sent out the email at 6:19pm.

Contact Hyatt Email Sent

I received an automated reply from Hyatt at 6:20pm.

Contact Hyatt Email Auto Reply

And by 11:00pm that night, the transfer was complete (much faster than I had originally thought).  That was easy!

Contact Hyatt Transfer Complete

My mother sent me a screenshot of her Hyatt account showing the 2,285 Hyatt points transfer (her current Hyatt account balance is now 0).

New Hyatt Balance Mom

My Hyatt account shows the 2,285 Hyatt points from my mother.  My new Hyatt account balance is 14,741.

New Hyatt Balance Grant

My plan for the next 2 weeks:

  • Spend at least $259 on my Chase Hyatt Credit Card next week before my statement closes.
  • My new Hyatt account balance will then have at least 15,000 Hyatt points.
  • Convert 35,000 Chase Ultimate Reward Points into 35,000 Hyatt points.
  • My new Hyatt account balance will then have at least 50,000 Hyatt points.
  • Convert 50,000 Hyatt points into 30,000 Southwest Airlines miles.

New Hyatt Account Balance

Here is how I will achieve the Southwest Airlines Companion Pass:

  • Currently, I need at least 41,522 more Southwest Airlines miles.
  • After transferring 50,000 Hyatt points into 30,000 Southwest Airlines miles, I will need 11,522 more Southwest Airlines miles.
  • At this point, there are many ways to get the remaining Southwest Airlines miles (please read part 1 for more info):
    • 25,000 Hyatt points = 12,000 Southwest Airlines miles (2.08 : 1 ratio)
    • 40,000 Marriott points: 30,000 Marriott points = 10,000 Southwest Airlines miles (3 : 1 ratio) + 10,000 Marriott points = 2,000 Southwest Airlines miles (5 : 1 ratio)
    • 42,000 Choice Hotels points = 12,600 Southwest Airlines miles (3.33 : 1 ratio)
    • 60,000 Wyndham Hotels points = 12,000 Southwest Airlines miles (5 : 1 ratio)
    • 120,000 Club Carlson points = 12,000 Southwest Airlines miles (10 : 1 ratio)
    • Manufacture spend 11,522 across my 2 Chase Southwest Airlines Credit Cards

Realistically, I will probably do some combination of MS and Hyatt transfers.  My preferred MS option is buying PayPal My Cash Cards for $3.95.  Therefore, $11,522 / $503 = 22.9 = 23 PayPal My Cash Cards x $3.95 = $90.85.  I can also buy gift cards at grocery stores for $5.95, but that will increase my MS costs.

Since both of my Chase Southwest Airlines Credit Card statements close on the 4th of the month, I have to earn the points by November 4th and December 4th (January 4th will be too late).  My plan moving forward is to spend $259 or more on my Chase Hyatt Credit Credit Card and wait for the statement to close.  Meanwhile, spend a few thousand on my 2 Chase Southwest Airlines Credit Cards and wait for those statements to close (both on the 4th as well).  After November 4, I will re-evaluate my Southwest Airlines account balance and see what needs to be done between November 4th and December 4th.  Should be an exciting month!

If you have any questions, please leave a comment below. (P.S. there might be a Part 3 and Part 4 in a few weeks, stay tuned for more).

SWA MEX

Southwest Airline’s Halloween Costume

33 thoughts on “Southwest Airlines Companion Pass – Part 2: Hyatt and Chase Ultimate Reward Points Game Plan

    1. Grant

      @John and @Bill, I don’t plan on meeting the entire $11,522 in spend by buying only PayPal My Cash Cards. I will probably do less than $5,000 total. I use my PayPal My Cash Cards to load 2 Serve Cards over the next few months. Since it is technically a debit card, I could use the card elsewhere, but will probably buy regular Visa gift cards to meet the other spending.

      Reply
    1. Grant

      Thank you, I’m good with making the best of a bad situation :)

      Most people would think that converting 50,000 Chase Ultimate Reward Points into 50,000 Hyatt Points into 30,000 Southwest Airlines miles is a bad idea. Except that 30,000 Southwest Airlines miles is worth as much as 60,000 Southwest Airlines miles when you redeem those miles when you have the Southwest Airlines Companion Pass :)

      Reply
      1. Michelle

        Hi Grant! Thank you for not making me feel dumb for doing this! I plan on doing this early next year to earn the pass ASAP in ’15. I might be able to eventually get it done but I want to use it for summer travel & SW would really work for us flying out of Denver. It’s not really set in stone that Hyatt points count but they just always have, right? I could test a small amount in early Jan but then I would have to wait 30 days to transfer more. Anyway, thanks for your hard work on your blog!

        Reply
        1. Grant

          I will do my 50,000 Hyatt to 30,000 Southwest transfer in mid November and post my results. The transfer should work just the same in 2015. Good luck with your Companion Pass!

          Reply
  1. harvson3

    The Choice Hotels CC that Mile Nerd always lists last (requires a hotel stay) is a clever fill-in for this function (and pulls from Barclays rather than Chase). Best of luck on the process.

    Reply
    1. Grant

      Good catch Harvson, the Barclays Choice Privileges Visa Credit Card that offers 32,000 Choice Points (after a mattress run) = ~10,000 Southwest Airlines miles.

      Much better than the Barclays Wyndham Rewards Visa Credit Card that offers 12,000 Wyndham Points = 2,000 Southwest Airlines miles.

      Reply
  2. Glenn

    Okay, lets see…

    Sounds like you can only do one Hyatt transfer like this per 30 days. And the accounts both have to be “current”, meaning they’ve had activity in the last 30 days at the time you request the transfer. I’m about to lose my Companion Pass (for the little one) at the end of this year, so thinking about the wife getting one at the start of next. Seems like I should create her a Hyatt account NOW and then do some minor transfers of UR points into it to make it “active”.

    Are there any limits to the number of Hyatt to Southwest conversions you can do in a year? You don’t say anything to suggest there are but I wonder… if you had a bazillion Hyatt points, could you do the whole 110,000 Southwest miles that way?

    Sounds like if you do UR -> Southwest it doesn’t count towards the companion pass but a cycle of UR to Hyatt to Southwest will. That’s likely what I would do. I guess I’ll leave some UR points around in my account to transfer to hers to transfer to her new Hyatt and then on to her new Southwest…

    Why are you doing this so late in 2014? Seems like doing it near the end of the year wastes a year of CP status. I’m hoping to do it mostly early in 2015 for CP status 2015 AND 2016. Why did you not do this?

    Reply
    1. Grant

      Very good questions Glenn, let me try to answer them all.
      1 – “Current” with Hyatt means some points/stay activity in the last 30 days. I believe Chase Ultimate Reward Point transfer count as well as purchases made on a Chase Hyatt Credit Card.
      2 – I do not believe there are any transfer limits between Hyatt and Southwest Airlines. The best transfer ratio is 5 : 3, anything else would be in the 5 : 2.4 range.
      3 – Theoretically you could get the Companion Pass with only Hyatt point transfers.
      4 – Transfer from Chase Ultimate Reward Points to Southwest Airlines miles do not count toward Companion Pass status.
      5 – Ideally, you would want to complete the Companion Pass at the beginning of the year, but then you have to start from 0. Right now, I am more than half way there, so I’m going for it!

      Hopefully that answers your questions, let me know if you have any other questions regarding the Companion Pass.

      Reply
      1. Glenn

        Thanks Grant, that’s helpful. Since the wife already has a Sapphire, as do I, and doesn’t have the Hyatt card (yet), its easiest if I do UR -> UR -> Hyatt -> Southwest for whatever amount I need. Hoping to get her two SW cards though so its not a lot…

        Reply
  3. ttn32

    I’m about 30k pts away from completing my pass requirement and I know things are getting tight as the year is drawing to a close. If I’m unable to meet this through the avenues I’m currently earning my pts would a friend or family member be able to transfer those remaining pts to me and would they count toward my pass total?

    Thanks in advance!

    Reply
    1. Grant

      I’m not sure if they would count toward the Companion Pass, but Southwest Airlines will probably charge a fee for transferring miles from one account to the other.

      Reply
  4. Mike H

    I was working on a plan that is:
    1) Existing 220k UR points to Marriott
    2) New 70k point Marriott card

    Total of 290k Marriott + 10k more in UR or Marriott spend to get to 300k Marriott
    Convert 300k Marriott to 7 nights of Marriott stay + 120k Rapid Rewards via Nights & Flights program.

    HOWEVER… your Hyatt to Rapid Rewards seems like the better end play for me just after the start of the new year:

    200k Hyatt (all from UR points) to 120k Rapid Rewards…. Saves me 20k URs and all my Marriott points.

    Is my math off? I guess under the Marriott plan I get 7 hotel nights, but at the cost of 70k Marriott points and 20k URs additional… not bad. I don’t know. Opinions?

    Reply
    1. Grant

      Hmm, let’s see what is the better deal…
      140,000 Marriott = 50,000 Southwest Airlines miles (standard transfer)
      280,000 Marriott = 100,000 Southwest Airlines miles (standard transfer)
      More info here: http://www.marriott.com/rewards/usepoints/morerew.mi

      Using the Nights and Points option.. (seems like a much better deal)
      250,000 Marriott = 100,000 Southwest Airlines miles + 7 nights in Category 1-5
      270,000 Marriott = 120,000 Southwest Airlines miles + 7 nights in Category 1-5
      Higher end category hotels are also available: http://www.marriott.com/rewards/usepoints/morepack.mi

      Using Hyatt Points, here are the options…
      50,000 Hyatt = 30,000 Southwest Airlines miles
      200,000 Hyatt = 120,000 Southwest Airlines miles

      Conclusion: it really depends on how many UR points you have, how many Hyatt points you have, how many Marriott points you have, and if you have a 7 night Marriott stay coming up. That is a tough decision, only you can answer…

      Reply
  5. Stephen Sun

    Use your PPBDC to pay your (or your parent’s) property taxes. OC Treasurer only chrages 3.95 flat fee to pay property taxes with debit. This will help you offload the PPMC that you bought and you would get 1% cash back. I’m waiting for Nov’s load so I can pay my Property tax.

    Reply
  6. Jonathan

    Grant…. I’ve got about 250,000 chase UR points and earn about 50,000/month in MSing. I am saving them until early 2015 to transfer to Hyatt and then to SW to get the companion pass for 2015/2016. Tell me, what is the max number of points I can transfer to Hyatt and then to Southwest? Also, can I transfer my Chase UR points into a Hyatt account in my wife’s name?

    Reply
    1. Grant

      I don’t believe there is a limit on Chase Ultimate Reward Points -> Hyatt Points -> Southwest Airlines miles. In a sense, I think it is unlimited. You can transfer Chase Ultimate Reward Points to your wife’s Chase account or directly to her Hyatt account. How many Chase Ultimate Reward Points does she have? How many Hyatt Points to do you have in your Hyatt account?

      Reply
  7. Charles

    Grant,
    Another way to get Companion Pass points is the Amtrak option. I used this option to get 45,000 points to go towards the Companion Pass. You will need the Chase Amtrak Guest Rewards MasterCard and spend over $200 on tickets per year on the credit card. Then you will be eligible to transfer a maximum of 25,000 points per year to Choice and then transfer to Southwest to get 22,500 points. I transferred the points to Choice in late 2013 and early 2014. In early 2014, I transferred the Choice points to Southwest to get the 45,000 points.
    This method comes with a cost of over $400 and a 50,000 points transfer from your Ultimate Rewards account or SPG account to Amtrak. Actually, I transferred 38,000 points because there was a 12,000 point bonus for the Amtrak credit card. This method is a little tricky, so proceed with caution. It was worth it for me but may not be worth it for others.

    Reply
    1. Grant

      Good morning Charles, yes, that is an interesting way to get the Southwest Airlines Companion Pass. I already have a ton of Chase credit card so I don’t think I am eligible to get another credit card, but it could be useful for some people. Thank you for sharing.

      Reply
  8. b

    Hi Ryan, I have about 53,000 sw points, and about 180,000 chase points, and I would like to get to companion pass asap for a possible trip in March. How many chase points would I need to transfer to hyatt so that I have enough to get to a companion pass? Thanks!

    Reply
    1. Grant

      Good morning, if you transfer 50,000 Chase UR Points to Hyatt, you can convert 50,000 Hyatt Points into 30,000 SWA miles. Since you need 57,000 more SWA miles, you would do this transfer twice. So you would need to move 100,000 Chase UR Points to Hyatt. You have to ask yourself how many times you will use the SWA Companion Pass in 2015-2016.

      Reply
  9. Joe

    hi grant, my wife and I were each approved for the southwest premier and plus cards. we plan on making the 110k threshold by end of March. what would happen if lets say we cancel all 4 cc by next Jan 2016 before the fee hits. can we then theoretically reapply for 4 southwest cards around March/April of 2017? or would we not be able to reapply until 24mo after we close our accounts? thanks!

    Reply
    1. Grant

      I believe you can get the sign up bonus 24 months after the last time you got the sign up bonus. So depending on when you get your sign up bonus, wait 2 years, and then reapply for the same SWA credit cards.

      Reply
  10. Pingback: Guest Post: My Failed 1-800-Flowers Companion Pass Experience | Travel with Grant

  11. JCola2

    Do Hyatt Points that are transferred to Southwest Rapid Rewards still qualify for companion pass status in Jan. 2016. A CSR from rapid rewards I spoke with on the phone said they did not but some of them are uniformed.

    Reply
    1. Grant

      I’m not sure, but I would think so. You can try a small test transfer and see if the SWA CP balance increases. Please report back your findings, thank you.

      Reply
  12. Charles

    I can confirm that Choice and Hyatt points transferred to Southwest Rapid Rewards still qualify for Companion Pass status. Transferred both on January 1st. Choice points arrived into my SW account on January 9th and Hyatt points arrived today January 13th.

    Reply

Got something to say?