A couple weeks ago, Hawaiian Airlines announced a relaunch of its credit card, complete with a refreshed list of features and a new sign-up bonus. The Hawaiian Airlines World Elite MasterCard now offers 35,000 miles after $1,000 in purchases within 3 months. These miles are enough for a free trip to Hawaii! Before we get to how, let’s first take a look at the card’s benefits.
Cardholders receive a free checked bag on flights. In addition, they receive a one-time 50% off companion discount for roundtrip coach travel between Hawaii and North America on Hawaiian Airlines. Unfortunately, it appears that this companion coupon is only good for travel on Hawaiian itself, and not on partners. That means only flights from New York, Phoenix, San Diego, Los Angeles, San Jose, San Francisco, Portland and Seattle are eligible.
A few benefits recur annually on your anniversary with the card. First, each year you’ll receive a $100 companion discount that follows the same rules as the 50% off coupon issued in the first year. Second, after spending at least $10,000 on the card over the course of a calendar year, you’ll earn 5,000 bonus miles. Finally, Pualani Gold and Platinum elites with Hawaiian can receive a statement credit of up to $100 for in-flight purchases.
Cardholders earn 2x miles for purchases with Hawaiian Airlines and 1x miles on all other purchases. Hawaiian offers an online shopping portal that can accelerate earnings to 10 miles per dollar or more on some purchases.
Two unique features are available to cardholders booking award flights with Hawaiian:
First, some roundtrip award flights from North America to Hawaii are discounted by 5,000 miles. This doesn’t apply to all flights, so finding inventory available for this promotional rate can be a challenge.
Second, cardholders may share miles with friends and family free of any transaction charge. This is handy for married couples and other family members that like to pool their points and miles for travel. Normally, such transfers wouldn’t make much sense due to transfer fees.
Award Flights With Hawaiian
Hawaiian’s program is an interesting one. Like Alaska Airlines, its unique positioning in a popular market has led it to create a number of partnerships with a number of carriers that typically wouldn’t be seen together. All Nippon Airways, American Airlines, China Airlines, Korean Air, JetBlue, Virgin America, Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Australia all offer the chance to redeem HawaiianMiles, and even to earn them on many flights.
For example, your 35,000 miles from the sign-up bonus could be used with American for a roundtrip anywhere within the US, Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central America. They could also be used for a flight worth up to $339 on JetBlue, or for a flight up to 2,000 miles in length on Virgin America.
Of course, award options on Hawaiian itself are rather important: flights to neighboring islands require just 7,500 miles each, making Hawaiian’s program a great one for hopping from, say, Honolulu to the Big Island for a few days.
Flights from North America to Hawaii take 20,000 miles each way, meaning the card’s sign-up bonus will put you very close to the miles needed for a free roundtrip. In fact, if you’re able to find one of the discounted roundtrip awards only available to cardholders, the 35,000 mile sign-up bonus alone will get the job done!
Award flights can utilize Hawaiian partner airlines, so you can take advantage of this award even if you live in a city not serviced directly by Hawaiian. For example, you can fly on American Airlines from Miami to Los Angeles, then hop on a Hawaiian flight to Honolulu for the same miles as the flight from Los Angeles alone.
Flights to Asia and Australia from Hawaii also offer compelling value: from Hawaii, one-way travel to Sydney or Brisbane in Australia, Auckland in New Zealand, a number of cities in Japan, Seoul in South Korea, Taipei in Taiwan and Beijing in China can all be had for just 40,000 miles. Add an extra 20,000 miles and you can travel to any of these destinations from the Mainland US.
Hawaiian allows flights to be booked as one-ways, so after earning a few more miles in spending, you could cover a full roundtrip for one flyer from the Mainland US to Hawaii or cover half the journey for two flyers! This can be useful if you find a cheap cash ticket or wish to use other miles for one of the legs of the flight. It can also be useful if you intend to continue your journey on from Hawaii, taking advantage of another program like United’s that can offer discounted award rates for travel to destinations in the Pacific from Hawaii as opposed to from the Mainland.
In all, this isn’t the hands-down best offer we’ve ever seen, but the Hawaiian Airlines MasterCard does offer good value, given how expensive flights to Hawaii can often be from the Mainland. If you already have a way to Hawaii but are looking for a way to trim down on the cost of exploring several of the state’s islands, the card’s an even better option, given the low redemption rates for inter-island travel.
By clicking on the application link below, you can help support PointsAway while racking up miles for a new adventure. If you’ve been looking to travel to Hawaii, this just might be the card that helps you get there!
Barclaycard® Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite MasterCard®
Card Sign-Up Bonus Offers
35,000 Hawaiian Airlines miles after $1,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.
- A One-Time 50% Off Companion Discount for Roundtrip Coach Travel Between Hawaii & North America on Hawaiian Airlines
- First Checked Bag Free
- Ability to Share & Transfer Miles With Family & Friends Free of Charge
- $100 Companion Discount Certificate Granted On Cardholder Anniversary
- Earn 5,000 Bonus Miles After $10,000 in Annual Purchases
- Current Hawaiian Gold & Platinum Flyers Earn $100 Annual Statement Credit Toward In-Flight Purchases
- 5,000 mile discount on select roundtrips from North America to Hawaii
- 2 miles per $1 spending on Hawaiian Airlines purchases.
- 1 mile per $1 on all other purchases.
- No annual mileage cap on earnings.
- $89 annual fee.
- 4% balance transfer fee.
- 5% cash advance fee.
- 0% foreign transaction fee.
- Up to $35 late payment fee.