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Up until last year Hawaiian Airlines’ co-branded credit card was issued by Bank of America. Then oddly overnight the card disappeared, and for several months Hawaiian was left without a co-branded card.
Well, it appears the reason for the sudden disappearance is that Hawaiian Airlines instead decided to have their card issued by Barclaycard, and it recently entered the market.
Hawaiian Airlines Mastercard Sign-Up Bonus
You earn 35,000 HawaiianMiles after spending $1,000 on the card within 90 days. Furthermore, upon account approval you receive a 50% companion discount for roundtrip revenue travel between Hawaii and the lower 48.
That’s not a mega sign-up bonus like we’re seeing on some other cards right now, though at the same time the minimum spend required is fairly low. Holders of a HawaiianMiles credit card also receive 5,000 miles off roundtrip award fares between North America and Hawaii, so this offer would actually give you enough points for a roundtrip economy ticket at the SuperSaver level.
The annual fee on the card is $89, and not waived for the first year.
Hawaiian Airlines Mileage Earnings Rates
The Hawaiian credit card offers 2x miles per dollar spent directly on Hawaiian Airlines purchases, and 1x mile per dollar spent on everything else. For everyday spend it’s not the most compelling card either, compared to cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, for example.
However, HawaiianMiles has quite a few shopping and restaurant partners in Hawaii, along with a handful in the continental US, so there is some potential for bonus points if you frequent those retailers.
Hawaiian Airlines Mileage Benefits & Perks
The card offers a few perks and other benefits:
- Complimentary checked bag for the primary cardmember when you use your card to purchase eligible tickets directly from Hawaiian Airlines
- Get $100 off a companion ticket for roundtrip coach travel between Hawaii and North America at each account anniversary
- Earn 5,000 annual bonus miles after $10,000 in annual spend
- No foreign transaction fees
Now unless you’re actually a Hawaiian frequent flyer, the perks aren’t all that useful. The complimentary checked bag is of course nice. And the $100 off a companion ticket is nice as well, but hardly as lucrative as some of the other credit card “companion” discounts/tickets out there.
I don’t think it’s worth putting $10,000 of spend on the card to earn 5,000 bonus miles, meaning you’re basically earning 1.5 miles per dollar for the first $10,000 spent. Ultimately I think there are better threshold bonuses out there and more valuable points to accrue.
The waived foreign transaction fees are nice, but as I said above, this isn’t a card I would be putting a ton of spend on.
Hawaiian Airlines Award Charts
Hawaiian has several airline partners, some of which offer pretty good redemption values. Here are their award charts:
Hawaiian’s airline partners are as follows:
|All Nippon Airways||China Airlines||Virgin America|
|American Airlines||JetBlue||Virgin Atlantic|
What’s interesting is that Hawaiian’s award charts for travel on partner airlines are structured differently — redemption costs on some carriers are zone based, while they’re distance based for others.
Hawaiian Share Miles Option
One of the unique aspects of Hawaiian’s program is that they let you share miles for free between accounts. This is only valid for those with their co-branded credit card, and you can only do it 10 times per calendar year. But this is great, since it means if you have multiple people sign up for the credit card (be it friends or family) you can pool all the miles towards a single award.
The best uses of Hawaiian Airlines miles
As I said above, Hawaiian has six airline partners, though I’ll just touch on what I consider to be the best redemptions:
- Inter-Island economy one-way award ticket: 7,500 miles
- Lower 48 to Hawaii economy one-way award ticket: 20,000 miles
- Lower 48 to Hawaii first class one-way award ticket: 40,000 miles
- East Coast to UK in Virgin Atlantic Upper Class: 125,000 miles
The Virgin Atlantic redemption rates might sound high, but it’s worth noting that Hawaiian is the only airline which doesn’t impose fuel surcharges for award travel on Virgin Atlantic and has access to all their award space (Delta also doesn’t impose fuel surcharges for travel on Virgin Atlantic, but only has access to a subset of their award space).
I’ve written in the past about the Barclaycard Arrival, which I consider to be one of the most rewarding credit cards for everyday spend. The sign-up bonus is worth ~$440 towards the cost of travel, while you earn ~2.2% cashback towards travel for everyday spend, which is an overall value proposition that’s tough to beat.
If I could only have one Barclaycard product I would choose the Arrival Card, but the Hawaiian Card is certainly a nice option for someone that already has the Arrival Card and is looking for another nice sign-up bonus from Barclaycard. It’s worth noting that while the annual fee is waived for the first year on the Arrival Card, it isn’t on the Hawaiian Card.
If you already have a Hawaiian Airlines Classic, Signature, or Platinum Visa:
Existing HawaiianMiles cards issued by Bank of America will automatically be converted to the new The Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard®, issued by Barclaycard, in April of 2014.
However, you won’t receive the sign-up bonus on the Barclaycard if your account is converted.
If you currently have a HawaiianMiles card, I would probably go ahead and apply for the the new Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard® now, especially if you are a Hawaiian flyer, and are using the other card benefits.
This isn’t a “must have” card or the biggest sign-up bonus ever.
While I wouldn’t use this card for everyday spend, I do think this card has some valuable award redemption opportunities, and the ability to share miles is especially valuable if you’re eying a first or business class award redemption on a partner airline.
Ultimately my favorite Barclaycard product remains the Barclaycard Arrival Plus™ World Elite Mastercard®, given both the ~$440 sign-up bonus (good towards travel) plus the amazing ~2.2% return on everyday spend.