The Southwest Airlines Rapid Reward program is a straightforward way to earn free flights quickly and easily. One only needs to apply for a Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Visa and then enroll in the rewards program. You can earn a free flight by taking eight round-trip flights in a 24-month period.

The good news is that signing up for and participating in this program is a simple process. And if you have the urge to travel, know this: Southwest Airlines, a fairly low-cost carrier, flies to destinations around the country. You should have little trouble getting to a favorite U.S. destination with your free flight.

How You Can Rapid Rewards Points: Southwest’s Rapid Rewards program gives you two main ways to earn free airline trips. You can earn points, that can be redeemed for free flights, by either taking Southwest Airlines flights or by making purchases with one of its partners.

You’ll earn one Rapid Rewards credit for every one-way flight that you take. You’ll earn two credits for every round-trip flight you take. Once you earn 16 credits over 24 consecutive months, you’ll be able to cash in your credits for a free flight on Southwest Airlines. The airline even gives you a good head start: You’ll earn two instant credits when you enroll in Southwest’s Rapid Rewards program.

You can also earn credits by purchasing merchandise with the program’s partners. For instance, if you take out a Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Visa credit card, you’ll earn a free flight on Southwest after your first charge with your new card. You’ll also earn points by renting cars, staying in hotels and dining at restaurants that have partnered with Southwest Airlines.

Signing Up: Fortunately, signing up for the program is easy. You merely have to log on to Southwest Airlines’ Rapid Rewards page and click on the “How to Enroll” link. You’ll then be taken to an online form that you should be able to fill out rather quickly.

Redeeming Your Rapid Rewards Points: Once you sign up for a Rapid Rewards account, redeeming your points is simple. Once you’ve earned 16 credits in a 24-month period, Southwest will automatically deposit a Rapid Rewards Standard Award in your account.

The Final Verdict: The Southwest Rapid Rewards program earns bonus points for its simplicity and generous rewards program. It also earns praise for the large number of partners that has linked with Southwest. Thousands of restaurants alone are participating in the program.

If you’re a frequent flier, consider the Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Program. You might be surprised at how easy it is to earn free flights across the country.