American Airlines releases a ton of award space on its routes to Hawaii at the last minute.
On almost all of American Airlines’ routes from Los Angeles to the four major Hawaiian islands and Dallas/Fort Worth to Oahu and Maui, there is award space for 4+ people in the next few weeks.
If you live in Southern California or North Texas, this is a great chance to use as few as 12,500 Avios per person per direction to get to Hawaii during high season when the weather is a perfect 85 degrees and sunny.
If you live somewhere else, this is a great chance to use 17,000+ Avios or 22,500 American Airlines per person per direction to take advantage of the last-second award space.
If you’d rather fly a different time of year when American Airlines has released no MileSAAver award space, this is a great reminder to look again within a few weeks of departure because American Airlines has been routinely releasing award space a few weeks out on its routes to Hawaii.
- What is the award space for four people from the continental United States to Hawaii on American Airlines flights?
- How can you book that space for 12,500 Avios each way?
- Why might you want to book the space with Avios even if it costs fewer American Airlines miles?
Award Space from Los Angeles
I searched for award space for four passengers from Los Angeles to the four major Hawaiian Islands on American Airlines flights.
Each calendar shows only the award space on the direct American Airlines flight. I managed that trick by selecting “AA, American Eagle and AmericanConnection” at the bottom of the American Airlines award search page, and then selecting “Non-stop only” on the search results page.
I only searched for economy award space because I don’t think American Airlines First Class product to Hawaii warrants a premium price in miles. It’s just a slightly bigger recliner from Los Angeles and an angled lie flat seat from Dallas.
For all calendars shown here, dates with light green coloring have MileSAAver award space for the number of passengers indicated on a direct American Airlines flight. That award space costs 22,500 American Airlines miles per person. Some of the dates say “0k” instead of “22.5k.” That’s a bug on aa.com that has persisted for months. If you click through to the next page, the correct price displays.
British Airways has access to all of American Airlines’ MileSAAver award space. From Los Angeles to Hawaii, the price is 12,500 Avios each way. From Dallas/Fort Worth to Hawaii, the price is 17,500 Avios each way. If you live in another city, you will have to pay more Avios to get to Hawaii depending on the distance of your connecting flight.
Oahu is the place to go for the best nightlife, best restaurants, and best public transportation.
Award space is wide open from Los Angeles to Oahu for four passengers in the next few weeks.
The return shows the exact same pattern. Taking a family vacation from Los Angeles to Oahu costs only 100,000 Avios plus $20 for four passengers.
Maui is the place to go for top-end resorts with a view of the sunset, Haleakala, and the road to Hana.
Award space is open from Los Angeles to Maui for four passengers in the next week and to a lesser extent for the next month.
The return has even more award space. Taking a family vacation from Los Angeles to Maui costs only 100,000 Avios plus $20 for four passengers.
Kauai is the place to go for the lushness of Maui without the crowds. There is great hiking on the Garden Isle.
Award space is wide open for four passengers from Los Angeles to Kauai for the next month for Monday to Thursday departures.
The return shows a similar pattern of more mid-week award space. Taking a family vacation from Los Angeles to Maui costs only 100,000 Avios plus $20 for four passengers.
Kona, Hawaii (Big Island)
The Big Island is the place to go for active volcanoes, the best snorkeling I’ve ever done, and the least rain of any resort area.
Award space for four passengers is abundant this week, but rare the rest of the month.
The return shows the same pattern of more award space for flights closer in.
Flights from Dallas/Fort Worth
These searches are for only two passengers, and still have the worst award space of any American Airlines flight to Hawaii. This flight would cost 22,500 American Airlines miles in economy or 17,500 Avios.
The Dallas to Maui flight shows great award space in economy for four passengers…
What’s the Pattern?
I often check American Airlines’ flights between the mainland and Hawaii for last-second economy award space, and I am rarely disappointed.
American Airlines seems to release unsold seats for MileSAAver award redemptions a few weeks before departure on the routes. Award space usually improves until a few days before departure, and you can often find award space even a few hours before departure.
If I lived in Los Angeles and wanted a Hawaii vacation, I would be pretty confident I could find award space on an American Airlines flight within a few weeks or days of departure–even if no space were currently available for my dates–as long as I weren’t trying to fly at an ultra-peak time like right around Thanksgiving, Christmas, or New Year’s.
Why Book with Avios?
For folks in much of the country, it will cost fewer Avios that American Airlines miles to fly to Hawaii on the exact same American Airlines or Alaska Airlines flights. These people should book with Avios.
Even if it costs you a few more Avios, though, you can consider booking with Avios instead of American Airlines miles because:
- American Airlines miles are more valuable for First Class international redemptions, so you might want to save them for that.
- Avios awards have no fee for booking within 21 days of departure and the cancellation fee on these awards would only be the forfeiture of $2.50 in taxes per segment. American Airlines awards do have a $75 booking fee for booking within 21 days of departure and the cancellation fee is $150 per ticket.
- Booking American Airlines flights with Avios gets you Priority AAccess, which means priority security and boarding. This seems like a glitch, but it has persisted for 2+ years.
Getting to Hawaii in the summer with miles is occasionally a challenge. For much of the year, Summer award space was hard to come by. But right now, award space is wide open on American Airlines flights with American Airlines or British Airways miles for last-minute departures.
The flights start at 12,500 Avios each way, and many flights have award space for 4+ passengers. You can book Avios and American Airlines awards as one way awards, so you can fly into one island and home from another with a cheap interisland flight to connect your open jaw.