Hawaii is a dream destination for many travelers, with its crystal blue waters and unbeatable white-sand beaches. After a brief shutdown at the start of the pandemic, travel to Hawaii is back in full swing.
But there’s no doubt: Whether you’re paying cash or using miles, getting to Hawaii can be expensive. It doesn’t have to be.
We’ll show you a few of our favorite ways to score cheap flights to Hawaii. That includes booking fares under $200 roundtrip (or even less) as well as some strategies that allow you to book two to four roundtrip plane tickets after just a single credit card bonus. That’s right: You and three companions could fly to Hawaii for almost free.
As travelers flock back to Hawaii, it's time to strategize how to get there for cheap this year or next and finally scratch it off your bucket list.
Get Cheap Flights to Hawaii Delivered to You (Or Make Them Free)
Finding cheap flights to Hawaii can be hard work. We do it for you with Thrifty Traveler Premium.
Hawaii is a hotspot, so we’re always searching for flights to save you hundreds of dollars – and we find them with our flight deal alert service. In just the last few months, we've found more than a dozen flight deals for our members with roundtrip flights nationwide to Hawaii under $400 – and many were under $300!
And these aren't deals to get on a plane next week: They're for travel later this winter and even all the way through next fall.
How low can it go? Back when Southwest first launched service to Hawaii, we found roundtrip flights for as low as $91. Yes, you read that correctly: $91 to fly to Hawaii and back. These tickets normally cost $500 to $700 or more, so there were some incredible savings here, easily offsetting the cost of getting signed up for our service.
But we're still seeing great deals to this day.
Not Familiar with Thrifty Traveler Premium – or Thrifty Traveler Premium+? See our guide on how they work!
With prices that low, you may want to pay cash rather than use miles. However, these deals are also a great way to use your credit card points by booking directly using your points, like through the Chase travel portal. It’s one of our favorite ways to use points.
That's because your Chase points go further when booking directly through their travel portal. With the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, every point gets you 1.25 cents when redeemed towards travel. And unlike when you book award flights with airline miles, you'd still earn miles for this flight!
With its 60,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first three months, the Chase Sapphire Preferred will get you far. At just under 16,000 points per ticket to book the cheap deal above, you'd have enough points to book three roundtrip tickets to Hawaii! Not bad for a card with just a $95 annual fee, right?
Click Here to get more information about the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card.
Upgrade to the Chase Sapphire Reserve®, and you get 1.5 cents per point. That would bring the cost of this same flight down to 13,080 points.
These are just two examples of how you can leverage a cheap flight to Hawaii … and even make it free. Whether you pay with cash or use your points, you can save huge.
One of the cheapest ways to book flights to Hawaii involves … British Airways?
That’s right: You can book flights to Hawaii with miles from the massive U.K. carrier using British Airways Avios … to fly American Airlines or Alaska Airlines out to the islands. British Airways, American Airlines, and Alaska are close partners through the Oneworld alliance, which allows you to use British Airways Avios to book flights on those partner carriers. And there's a serious sweet spot for getting to Hawaii that makes exploiting this partnership worth it.
While American Airlines frequently charges 45,000 AAdvantage miles or more for these flights, you can fly from the West Coast to Hawaii for just 26,000 Avios roundtrip.
The trick to getting these ultra-low rates is starting your search in Los Angeles (LAX) or Phoenix (PHX), both of which have nonstop American Airlines service to the islands. You can also start from other cities like Seattle (SEA), Portland (PDX) San Francisco (SFO), San Jose (SJC), or San Diego (SAN), as Alaska Airlines nonstops to Hawaii are also bookable at these rates.
American Airlines, meanwhile, charges at least 40,000 to book the exact same flights – and often much more. No joke: Same dates, same time, same exact plane for another 14,000 miles.
If you don't have British Airways Avios to cash in on this sweet spot, you could get them in a hurry. That's because, British Airways is transfer partners with Chase, American Express, Capital One, and even Bilt Rewards. You can transfer your bank points from those cards directly to your British Airways account. That means a stash of points from cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, American Express Gold Card®, or the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card is all you need to make this a reality.
Capitalizing on this deal is simple. Just log in to your British Airways account, select “Book a flight with Avios,” and start searching for flights from the West Coast to Hawaii.
Singapore? Not the Nation, the Airline Miles
One of the best ways to get to Hawaii involves an airline based on the other side of the planet: Singapore Airlines.
Singapore allows you to use its KrisFlyer miles for flights on Alaska Airlines, which flies to all four major Hawaiian islands. Most domestic airlines charge at least 20,000 miles one-way for those flights. Booking with Alaska MileagePlan miles, you’d need at least 35,000 miles for a roundtrip – and as much as 80,000 miles.
However, Singapore charges just 24,000 miles for a roundtcheap cash fares as well as award alerts to book flights using points and miles.rip fare to Hawaii on the exact same Alaska flights. Better yet, Singapore miles are among the easiest to pile up (more on this later).
You’ll need to book a nonstop flight to get these low rates, so you may need to book a separate connecting flight to an Alaska hub. Alaska only flies direct to the Hawaiian islands from West Coast airports like Los Angeles (LAX), San Francisco (SFO), Seattle (SEA) and Portland (PDX). But it works whether you're flying to the Big Island (KOA), Kahului Airport on Maui (OGG), Honolulu International Airport (HNL), or Kauai (LIH).
The hitch here is that you can’t book Alaska flights directly through Singaporeair.com, so it requires some additional work – you’ll have to call Singapore Airlines to book the flight. But at this price, it’s worth the extra effort.
First, you’ll need to locate available award seats by searching through another partner airline like American Airlines. While searching through AA, look for nonstop flights at 22,500 miles – that’s AA’s saver-level price for a flight to Hawaii.
Thrifty Tip: Whenever you’re looking to book an award ticket with a partner airline’s miles, you should search for availability through a partner and not the airline you’d be flying on. That’s because airlines often release more award seats to their own members than to partners. In this example, you’d want to search for Alaska Airlines fares through AA or British Airways rather than on AlaskaAir.com.
Once you’ve nailed down the flights you want, copy down the flight numbers and dates. And get your Singapore KrisFlyer account information ready.
When you’re ready to book, call Singapore’s booking line at 1-833-727-0118. Give them the above information and you should have no problem withdrawing the miles from your KrisFlyer account to book your flight to Hawaii.
These are some of the cheapest flights to Hawaii you'll ever find. And luckily, getting Singapore miles is easier than almost any frequent flyer program. That’s because you can transfer points from Chase, Citi, American Express, and Capital One – along with Marriott Bonvoy points.
With a welcome bonus of at least 80,000 points after spending $6,000 in the first six months, The Platinum Card® from American Express is another strong option. That's especially true if you're eligible for a welcome offer of 150,000 points via CardMatch.
15K Roundtrip to Hawaii … Nationwide?!
Beware: This one's not for the faint of heart. But for those with the patience of a saint and flexibility of an Olympic gymnast, you could pull off the cheapest way to get to Hawaii on the planet.
It involves using Turkish Miles & Smiles, a mileage program filled to the brim with sweet spots … and this one is the sweetest spot of all. Even when United is charging 45,000 miles or more roundtrip, you can book those same United flights using just 15,000 Turkish miles. And it doesn't matter whether it's a nonstop from the West Coast or a one-stop itinerary from the Midwest or East Coast – it's still just 7,500 miles each way in economy.
You cannot beat that, period.
But to actually pull it off, things get complicated. Turkish's IT is notoriously goofy with a website that's tricky to navigate. Getting the flights you want can require making a phone call, sending an email, or both. That's because while finding the award availability to book these flights is typically fairly easy, Turkish often won't display the best itineraries online.
Trust us: With these ultra-low rates, it's worth the extra work.
Be sure to read our complete walkthrough to booking flights to Hawaii for 15,000 miles!
Fortunately, earning Turkish miles has gotten much easier over the last few years. Turkish is a Capital One transfer partner and a Citi transfer partner, too. That means just 30,000 points on either the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card or the Citi Premier® Card is all you need for two roundtrip tickets to Hawaii.
And if you’re earning points on rent with Bilt Rewards, you can also transfer points to Turkish miles at a 1:1 ratio.
Nonstop Delta Flights from 15K Each Way
Set on flying Delta to Hawaii and back? Unless you're willing to wait for a cheap Delta SkyMiles flash sale, this is your best bet.
Sadly days of booking Delta flights to the islands for 35,000 Air France/KLM Flying Blue miles are gone. But so long as you're flying nonstop, you can still save a boatload of miles by booking through Virgin Atlantic instead.
Here's the gist of it: The shorter, the better. For most Delta flights (including these routes to Hawaii), Virgin Atlantic uses a distance-based award chart. Flights that clock in between 2,001 and 3,000 miles cost 15,000 Virgin Atlantic points, while those up to 4,000 miles each way cost 22,500 Virgin Atlantic points.
Either way, there are some savings. For example, you can book:
- Seattle (SEA) to all four Hawaiian Islands for 15,000 miles each way in economy
- Los Angeles (LAX) to all four Hawaiian islands for 15,000 miles each way, too
- Salt Lake City (SLC) to Maui (OGG) for 15,000 miles each way
- Minneapolis-St. Paul (MSP) to Honolulu (HNL) for 22,500 miles each way
- Detroit (DTW) to Honolulu (HNL) for 27,500 miles each way
- New York City (JFK) to Honolulu (HNL) for 27,500 miles each way
Finding the award availability to actually book flights at these rates can be hit or miss. You'll want to make sure you use a crafty trick to pull up Virgin's hidden month-long calendar. Or just wait for a Thrifty Traveler Premium+ deal: In the last few weeks alone, we've sent subscribers two award alerts for a chance to book these Delta flights to Hawaii through Virgin.
Get award alerts like this to your inbox with Thrifty Traveler Premium+!
Why use more than 100,000 SkyMiles for a trip this winter to Hawaii…
… when you can use less than half the points to book the exact same flights?
Unfortunately, you can't transfer Delta SkyMiles to a Virgin account. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to get all the Virgin points you need.
But these banks have frequently offered transfer bonuses of 30% or more to Virgin Atlantic, which could bring down the cost to just 35,000 credit card points or less. It doesn't get much better than that!
Whether you go next month or next year, it’s time to check Hawaii off your wish list. With the help of some out-of-the-box points strategies, great partner airline redemptions, and Thrifty Traveler Premium, cheap flights to Hawaii may be more attainable than you originally thought.
With travel to Hawaii back in swing, it's time to strategize how you can get there for less.