Update August 30, 2015: You must book your Hawaiian Airlines awards between the United States mainland and Hawaii by Monday August 31 if you want to use American Airlines miles.
You will still be able to use American Airlines miles to fly inter-island flights on Hawaiian and to fly to Hawaiian’s destinations in Asia, Australia, and New Zealand.
You will still be able to use American Airlines miles to fly to Hawaii on American Airlines, US Airways, and Alaska Airlines flights.
How Big of a Loss for AAdvantage Miles is Losing Hawaiian Flights to Hawaii?
I’d categorize this as a minor loss. Hawaiian has a nice route network to the west coast, but so do Alaska, American, and US Airways. All this cities will still have direct flights to Honolulu that you can book with American Airlines miles after September 1. (Of course, if you only want the direct flight, book it with Avios not American Airlines miles to save 5k to 10k miles each way.)
The big losses are Hawaiian’s flights from Las Vegas and New York-JFK to Honolulu. If you live in Las Vegas, substitute with cheap cash fares on Allegiant and consider upgrading to its First-Class-sized Giant Seat. If you live in New York, you can fly United’s direct flight from Newark to Honolulu, which features a flat bed in First Class (trip report), and costs only 30,000 Singapore miles one way.
It’s not like Hawaiian offers great award space from New York to Honolulu any way. There’s a smattering of days with economy award space for two on the route, but no days with First Class award space.
Hawaiian First Class is a little bit nicer than American, US Airways, or Alaska First Class on their mainland routes (Trip Report: Hawaiian Airlines First Class from Honolulu to Las Vegas), but losing the ability to book it on mainland flights isn’t huge.
If you want to book Hawaiian Airlines award space between the mainland and Hawaii with your American Airlines miles, you can do that through August 31, 2015 at which point flights will be bookable through July 2016. American charges:
- 17.5k miles each way in economy during off peak dates
- 22.5k miles each way in economy during peak dates
- 37.5k miles each way in First Class
Even after September 1, American miles will remain a valuable currency to Hawaii for the award space on American, Alaska, and US Airways flights.
Flights You Can Still Book with American Airlines Miles After September 1
Hawaiian Airlines and subsidiary Ohana have an extensive intra-Hawaii route network that you can book for 5,000 miles one way.
Generally I pay for interisland flights with cash as they’re often about $80, which I think is a better deal than 5,000 American Airlines miles + $5.60, but if flights are expensive when you want to travel, this can be a good deal.
Hawaii to Asia, Australia, and New Zealand
Hawaiian flies from Honolulu to:
- Japan: Tokyo-Haneda, Osaka-Kansai, Sapporo, Sendai (ends 9/30)
- China: Beijing
- Australia: Sydney, Brisbane
- New Zealand: Auckland
- South Korea: Seoul
- Tahiti: Papeete
- American Samoa: Pago Pago
Australia and New Zealand could be useful destinations with American Airlines miles. Sometimes the only premium cabin awards to Australia and New Zealand are bookable in Hawaiian First Class for 62,500 miles one way because Qantas releases very little space on its American flights in Business and First Class.
If you want to book Hawaiian Airlines flights to Hawaii with American Airlines miles, do it now.
- Starting September 1, 2015, you can no longer use your American Airlines miles to book Hawaiian Airlines flights between the mainland United States and Hawaii.
- You will still be able to use American Airlines miles to fly inter-island flights on Hawaiian and to fly to Hawaiian’s destinations in Asia, Australia, and New Zealand.
- You will still be able to use American Airlines miles to fly to Hawaii on American Airlines, US Airways, and Alaska Airlines flights.
- You can also book Hawaiian Airlines flights with Hawaiian miles, a transfer partner of Membership Rewards and Starpoints
Hat Tip The Forward Cabin