Using Your Frequent-flier Miles for Flights to Hawaii

Photo Credit - PRNewsFoto/Hawaiian Airlines

You might read about how impossible it is to use your frequent-flier miles. Don't be discouraged. If you are looking to book a trip to Hawaii, here's the best way to use your miles for flights to Hawaii.

Saver Awards for Flights to Hawaii

You may not always be able to use your saver miles for flights to Hawaii, where it will cost you just 45-50,000 miles for a round-trip ticket. Yet, by being flexible with your dates, traveling mid-week and with a bit of luck, you can generally get a saver award for flights to Hawaii about half the time.

Consider a Standard Mileage Award

Most frequent flier programs, however, allow you to use a higher number of miles to book a ticket any day, anytime. This includes American Airlines and United Airlines, the two biggest carriers to Hawaii. Why would you want to use 90,000 miles for flights to Hawaii? If you consider than 100 miles equals $1, a ticket from the east coast using miles is worth around $900.

If the lowest fare available for the dates you want to travel is over $1000 round-trip, using your miles makes a lot of sense.

Earn Miles in Other Ways

Keep in mind that miles can be earned not only by flying with a paid ticket.

Use an airline credit card for most purchases. With frequent bonus miles for certain types of purchases, your miles will accrue at a nice, steady rate.

The key, of course, as with any credit card, is to pay your balance in full every month to avoid finance charges.

Watch Those Baggage Charges

You should also keep in mind that almost every airline (except Southwest as of November 2015) is charging for baggage.

The charges vary, but you can expect to pay at least $25 for your first bag and $50 for your second bag. A third item can cost as much as $100.

That gets really expensive if two of you want to take two bags each and maybe a set of golf clubs. That's at least $350 just for baggage roundtrip.

Few people fly to Hawaii with less than two checked bags, but if you want to save some serious money, pack light. If you're staying in a condo hotel you'll likely have laundry facilities in your unit. Many hotels have laundry facilities as well.