Its no secret that I Luv flying Southwest Airlines. They have no checked baggage fees for your first 2 luggages, you can redeem your points for any seat with no blackout dates, and you can change or cancel your paid ticket and award reservations at least 10 min before your flight for no fees or penalties. They are also expanding their flight footprint to include more international destinations.
They just recently announced that on April 17, 2015, they will be changing the number of points you would need to redeem for a flight based on destination, time, day of travel, demand, fare class, etc. As the Frequent Miler reports, they already started making changes by removing the current award redemption chart.
So until we know what the new point redemption structure will be, a good place to get an estimate of the points you will need for various destinations around the US is the Southwest Getaway finder. Here you can type in your origin city, your destination city will be to anywhere, select one way or roundtrip, your dates, and show fare in points, and you can see the lowest amount of points you will need for an award redemption. Note: This map does not show international destinations.
When you do click a destination and view flights, you will see the range of points needed for different flight times. These points fluctuate because they are based on the paid fare to these destinations.
The announcement hasn’t mentioned anything about changes to the Companion Pass which Southwest offers, and I hope they don’t make any changes because this adds a lot of value to their program.