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Opinions, analyses, reviews, or recommendations expressed here are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed or endorsed by the issuer. We may be compensated through the issuer’s Affiliate Program. For a full list of our advertisers, including American Express, see our disclosure page.

Advertiser Disclosure
Advertiser Disclosure

Advertiser Disclosure: Some of the card offers that appear on this website are from companies which ValuePenguin receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). The site does not review or include all companies or all available products.

Disclaimer: The editorial content on this page is not provided by any of the companies mentioned, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Opinions expressed here are author's alone. For a full list of our advertisers, see our disclosure page.

Opinions, analyses, reviews, or recommendations expressed here are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed or endorsed by the issuer. We may be compensated through the issuer’s Affiliate Program. For a full list of our advertisers, including American Express, see our disclosure page.

Hawaiian Airlines Credit Card: Is It Worth Getting?

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"During the first year this card provides great value to consumers who fly using Hawaiian Airlines. Due to an unimpressive reward structure, the card's worth diminishes in the long-term."

Contents

The Hawaiian Airlines credit card comes with a decent welcome bonus of 35,000 miles and discounts on companion fare. Unfortunately, most of these rewards go away after the first year of cardmembership. Individuals who wish to get a card with better long-term potential should consider other options, such as the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express or the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card.

Good For…Bad For…
  • Anyone who can earn the 35,000 mile bonus
  • Long-term value
  • Those who fly with at least one other person, and can take advantage of the companion fare discounts
  • General everyday use, due to poor 1% rewards rate on all non-Hawaiian Airlines purchases

Review: Is The Hawaiian Airlines Credit Card Worth It?

The Hawaiian Airlines Credit Card offers some fantastic value for the first year, but becomes hard to justify past that point. The card has an unimpressive base rewards structure, giving consumers a 2% rewards rate on Hawaiian Airlines purchases, and 1% on everything else. The best airline credit cards, or even generic travel credit cards, will outperform that kind of earning in most circumstances.

The best value for this card comes from the introductory offers you can receive. Firstly, if you qualify for the signup bonus, by spending $1,000 in the first 3 months, you receive 35,000 Hawaiian Airlines Miles. That’s almost enough to cover a full round-trip fare from North America to Hawaii, in the SuperSaver Coach fare class. Also, new cardholders have the ability to get a 50% discount on one coach companion fare, during the first 13 months their account is open. For a pair of travelers, these benefits can knock down the cost of a trip to Hawaii by half.

While the above bonuses are great, once they are used up, the card's value runs out. There are two bonuses that you get going forward. One is a $100 discount on any coach companion Hawaiian Airlines fare. This can be a decent savings, but only useful for those customers who fly to Hawaii every year. Even then, however, you will only be coming out $11 ahead, after the annual fee. At that point, you would be getting a better deal by shopping with a flat rate 2% cash back card, such as the Citi Double Cash. The other ongoing benefit of this card is the 5,000 bonus miles you earn each year you spend at least $10,000 on the card. The value of this bonus is approximately $50, which puts a significant dent it in the card's annual fee.

Bottom Line: The Hawaiian Airlines Credit Card is offers some good value early on, though becomes harder to justify keeping around after the first year is out.

Hawaiian Airlines Credit Card Benefits & Features

The Hawaiian Airlines World Elite Mastercard earns cardholders miles with the affiliated airline, each time it’s used to make a purchase. You earn two miles for every dollar you spend with Hawaiian Airlines. This is on top of the miles you would normally earn for booking a flight with the airline. Also, whenever you use the card to make any other purchases, you will be awarded one miler per dollar. Given we estimate the value of a single Hawaiian Airlines mile to be $0.01, that translates to a rewards rate of anywhere between 2% and 1%, depending on where you’re making a purchase.

Annual Fee $89
Purchase APR 16.99%, 20.99% or 25.99% Variable
Card Details
  • Earn 35,000 bonus miles when you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days
  • Earn 2 miles for every $1 spent on Haiwaiian Airlines
  • Earn $1 for every $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Primary cardholder is eligible to earn a $100 discount off one coach companion ticket for roundtrip travel between Hawaii and North America on Hawaiian Airlines on each account anniversary upon payment of annual fee
  • Receive a one-time 50% Off companion discount for roundtrip coach travel between Hawaii and North America on Hawaiian Airlines
  • As a primary cardholder, receive a complimentary first checked bag every time you use your card to purchase eligible tickets directly from Hawaiian Airlines
  • No foreign transaction fees

There are two ways to earn bonus miles using the Hawaiian Airlines World Elite Mastercard. When you first sign up for the card, you are eligible to earn 35,000 bonus miles if you manage to spend $1,000 within the first 90 days of opening your account. That’s enough to book a one way flight in the Coach Saver fare between North America and Hawaii. We estimate this to come out to a value of approximately $475.

This card can also provide a single baggage first checked baggage fee waiver, on a Hawaiian Airlines flight. The terms and conditions for the card specify that this benefit is only available once, which is very limiting. Most of the best airline credit cards provide baggage waivers on multiple flights and passengers.

Companion Fare Discounts

When you first sign up for the card, you receive a one-time 50% discount on a round-trip coach fare for a companion – essentially a “buy one get one half off” promotion. Given that a round-trip flight between North America and Hawaii costs in the neighborhood of $900, we value this benefit at approximately $450.

Going forward, every account anniversary you will receive one $100 discount towards a coach companion ticket, for a round-trip flight between Hawaii and North America.

Both these benefits apply only towards Hawaiian Airlines operated flights, and not their codeshare partners.

How Does The Hawaiian Airlines Credit Card Compare To Other Credit Cards?

In order to get a good sense for whether this card is worthwhile, it’s important to consider it in the context of all other options. We matched the Hawaiian Airlines Credit Card against some other popular choices, to see where it shines or falls short.

Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard® vs Alaska Airlines Visa Signature® Credit Card

As long as the destinations you fly to are serviced by Alaska Airlines, and you fly with at least one other person, its co-branded credit card will be a better value than the Hawaiian Airlines card – this includes flights to Hawaii. In the short-term, the Hawaiian Airlines card is still the better choice, but as a long-term card to keep in your wallet, the Alaska Airlines credit card shines. The reason for this is the companion pass that the former comes with. With the Alaska Airlines credit card, cardholders get a “buy one get one for $99” certificate awarded to them each cardmember anniversary - valid towards Alaska Airlines operated flights. This carries a lot more value than Hawaiian Airlines’ $100 companion discount.

Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard® vs Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express

Individuals who'd like a little more flexibility in their credit card rewards ought to consider the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express. Though it's a hotel credit card, the reward points you earn through it are transferrable to over 30 different airlines, including Hawaiian Air. Plus, every time you transfer 20k Starpoints, Amex awards you with a bonus 5k points. If you travel through Hawaiian Airlines every year, you will be better off with the Hawaiian Airlines credit card. However, if you have no particular loyalty to this airline, the Starwood Preferred Guest credit card is sure to provide the better value.

Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard® vs Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

When it comes to maximizing short-term travel rewards, there are very few cards that do it as well as the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card. The card comes with a bonus valued at $625, as long as you manage to spend $4,000 in the first 3 months of opening your account. The maximum potential rewards on the card aren't as high as the Hawaiian Airlines credit card, or the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express. However, what you lose in maximum value, you make up for in usability. Chase Ultimate Rewards® points can be used on a variety of things, ranging from statement credit to being transferred to one of the 10 affiliate airline and hotel reward programs.

Compare The Hawaiian Airlines Credit Card Against Other Airline Credit Cards Based On Your Spending

If you wish to see how the Hawaiian Airlines credit card performs against other credit cards based on how you spend you can use our tool below. Input your estimated monthly budget, and our tool will calculate the expected 2-year net rewards for each credit card.

Edit Monthly Spend: $1,430
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Card Annual Fee 2-yr Net Rewards Rate

The Net Rewards Rate is equal to the Rewards Value over two years divided by the total spending. The total spending is equal to the values entered into the tool and multiplied by 24 months. See the Rewards Value note to see details on how it is calculated.

The estimates here are ValuePenguin's alone. They are not those of the card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer.

Bonus Value

The bonus field shows our estimate for the value of the card’s sign-up bonus. If the bonus is point or mile based, we multiply the total bonus points/miles by our estimate for their value to arrive at a dollar equivalent. We display $0 if there is no bonus or if the user doesn’t qualify for the bonus based on the current spending entered into the tool.

The estimates here are ValuePenguin's alone. They are not those of the card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer.

2-yr Rewards Value

The Rewards Value is calculated by adding together the rewards earned from charging purchases to the card over two years and any sign-up bonuses (if applicable). They are then multiplied by our estimated point/mile value, with any annual fees (if applicable) subtracted. All values are based on our own estimates for the dollar value of any points, miles or bonuses earned using a card.

The estimates here are ValuePenguin's alone. They are not those of the card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer.

Alaska Airlines Visa Signature® Credit Card
$75 3.88%
$475
Earn up to 25,000 Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan™ Bonus Miles upon approval
$1,397
Graph Card Read Review More Details
Annual Fee $75
APR 14.24%

Card Details

  • Earn up to 25,000 Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan™ Bonus Miles upon approval
  • 3 miles per $1 on Alaska Airlines tickets, vacation packages, and cargo purchases
  • 5 miles per $1 spent using Mileage Plan Dining
  • 1 mile per $1 on all purchases
  • First Checked Bag Free for you and up to 6 companions booked on your reservation
  • Coach Companion Fare from $121 ($99 base fare plus taxes and fees from $22)

Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months

Card Rewards Estimated Rewards Value Dollars*
Spending Rewards 56,400 x $0.019 = $1,072
Bonuses
25,000 x $0.019 = $475
Less Annual Fees -$150
Total Net Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months 1,397
Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express
$0 Intro Annual Fee for the first year then $95 3.69%
$600
Earn 25,000 bonus Starpoints® after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months
$1,329
Graph Card Read Review More Details

Terms and Limitations Apply

Annual Fee $0 Intro Annual Fee for the first year then $95
APR 16.24% - 20.24% Variable

Card Details

  • Earn 25,000 bonus Starpoints® after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.
  • Earn 2 Starpoints® for each dollar of eligible purchases spent on the Card at participating SPG® & Marriott Rewards® hotels. Earn 1 Starpoint for all other purchases.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on International purchases.
  • Redeem Starpoints® at over 1,300 participating hotels and resorts in over 100 countries and for flights on more than 150 airlines with SPG flights, all with no blackout dates.
  • $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
  • Terms apply.

Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months

Card Rewards Estimated Rewards Value Dollars*
Spending Rewards 34,320 x $0.024 = $824
Bonuses
25,000 x $0.024 = $600
Less Annual Fees -$95
Total Net Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months 1,329
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
Introductory Annual Fee of $0 the first year, then $95 2.86%
$625
50,000 bonus points when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening
$1,028
Graph Card Read Review More Details
Annual Fee Introductory Annual Fee of $0 the first year, then $95
APR 16.99% - 23.99% Variable

Card Details

  • Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Earn 5,000 bonus points after you add the first authorized user and make a purchase in the first 3 months from account opening
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel
  • No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards

Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months

Card Rewards Estimated Rewards Value Dollars*
Spending Rewards 39,840 x $0.013 = $498
Bonuses
50,000 x $0.013 = $625
Less Annual Fees -$95
Total Net Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months 1,028
Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard®
$89 1.43%
$350
Earn 35,000 bonus miles when you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days
$515
Graph Card Read Review More Details
Annual Fee $89
APR 16.99%, 20.99% or 25.99% Variable

Card Details

  • Earn 35,000 bonus miles when you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days
  • Earn 2 miles for every $1 spent on Haiwaiian Airlines
  • Earn $1 for every $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Primary cardholder is eligible to earn a $100 discount off one coach companion ticket for roundtrip travel between Hawaii and North America on Hawaiian Airlines on each account anniversary upon payment of annual fee
  • Receive a one-time 50% Off companion discount for roundtrip coach travel between Hawaii and North America on Hawaiian Airlines
  • As a primary cardholder, receive a complimentary first checked bag every time you use your card to purchase eligible tickets directly from Hawaiian Airlines
  • No foreign transaction fees

Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months

Card Rewards Estimated Rewards Value Dollars*
Spending Rewards 34,320 x $0.01 = $343
Bonuses
35,000 x $0.01 = $350
Less Annual Fees -$178
Total Net Estimated Rewards Through 24 Months 515

Comments and Questions

* See the online credit card application for details about terms and conditions. Reasonable efforts are made to maintain accurate information. However all credit card information is presented without warranty. When you click on the "Apply Now" button, you can review the credit card terms and conditions on the issuer's website.

Disclaimer: This content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuer. Opinions expressed here are author's alone, not those of the credit card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through the credit card issuer Affiliate Program. 

These responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

How We Calculate Rewards: ValuePenguin calculates the value of rewards by estimating the dollar value of any points, miles or bonuses earned using the card less any associated annual fees. These estimates here are ValuePenguin's alone, not those of the card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer.

Advertiser Disclosure: Some of the offers that appear on this website are from companies which ValuePenguin receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where offers appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). The site does not review or include all companies or all available products. For more information please see our Advertiser Disclosure.