How to Get to Hawaii for Free

Hawaii.  It has all of the allure of crystal blue water, pristine sandy beaches, and dense green jungles with none of the worry about foreign languages, currencies, and customs.  I think that’s why it is such a draw for so many people.  I’d love to convince you to try out some Central American and Carribbean gems, but if you’re already dead-set on Hawaii (and you have every reason to be), then let us at WorldWanderlusting help you get there the way we like to get to places: freely (or at least close to it).

Not all FF programs were created equally, and some present value options for specific departure locations and destinations.  I scoured the options and mapped them out in a spreadsheet with pros and cons so that I could rank them (that’s what any good equity analyst would do).

But before we get to that, I have to tease you.  After all, the idea here is to put the “lust” in “wanderlust.”  Let’s start with this video.  You don’t need to watch the whole thing, just get a taste.

Ahh… yes… you watched it all, didn’t you?  Mission accomplished, right? Your pulse quickened, didn’t it? That’s what we like to hear.  Now, things are about to get more exciting.

You know that the one thing we just can’t stand to hear people say is, “I’d love to travel, I just can’t afford it.”  Here’s how we eradicate that phrase – I have two solid options for you to get to Hawaii from the mainland US for free or close to it.  As you probably already know, what we like to do at WorldWanderlusting is show you how you can take advantage of bonus offers and promotions to build an arsenal of frequent flyer miles and points that will help you combat the monotony of life.

After reviewing the available programs and the bonus point promotions help you get them, I’d recommend these three options: 1) The United MileagePlus Explorer Card and 2) the American Express(R) Premier Rewards Gold Card.

Here’s how I laid it out:


RT to Hawaii with Frequent Flyer Miles
Airline Lowest Mile Redemption Pros   Get them
Chase Ultimate Rewards Points as cash ~40,000 All points from one card/Reclaim   miles as you travel/Ultimate flexibility Ink Classic® Business Card Or Chase Sapphire PreferredSM
US Airways 40,000 Get all points from one card/No minimum spend/5k mile discount with card The US Airways Premier World MasterCard®
Delta 40,000 Flies to all   islands/Relative value for Skymiles American Express(R) Premier Rewards Gold Card
American 35,000 Lowest   redemption/Good from American hubs 15
United 40,000 Flies to all   islands/Good from United hubs United MileagePlus Explorer Card
Hawaiian Air 40,000 No blackout dates/All islands Hawaiian Air
Alaska Air 40,000 Lots of   availability/Good from Delta hubs Alaska Air
Allegiant N/A  as little as $318 Cheap prices from Allegiant hubs – LAS, LAX/Could buy vouchers
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8 Responses to How to Get to Hawaii for Free

  1. Hi Brad,

    Just a little clarification: the lowest redemption on American Airlines for Hawaii is 22,500 miles vs 35,000 as you have listed. You can redeem 22,500 for a coach ticket, and 35,000 for first class ticket.

    • bradleyjai says:

      Thanks, Debbie. You’re right, it’s 22,500 each way with the MileSAAver during peak season, but you can get it for 17,500 each way with the MileSAAver off-peak. (Jan 12-Mar 8; Aug 22-Dec 15). I was just looking from SLC or BOI to HNL the first week of September and we could have our feet in the sand for 35k total.

      The crazy thing with AA, though, is that we could go to Peru for 15k each way with the MileSAAver off-peak. Now there’s some value!

      AA has a great program with a lot of availability

  2. Derek Bedke says:

    So what are the Caribbean gems that you would suggest that you hinted at in this post?

    • bradleyjai says:

      Derek- I’m so glad you asked. So far, my favorite Caribbean island is St. Lucia. I’ve never been in clearer water than in the dark, heavy volcanic sand on the beaches of St. Lucia.

      We also had an incredible experience kayaking into the bioluminescent bay in Fajardo, Puerto Rico. Somehow I’ve still yet to blog about the microbes living in the hyper-salinated water, which glow when agitated. It made for the nighttime sea-kayaking experience of a lifetime.

      Steer clear of Haiti, though it does have some hidden treasures like bassin bleu. The other side of the island, the D.R., though, has some great tourism treats in Samana. Check out

      If that’s not enough, yet, I’d recommend the island of Caye Caulker (Belize). Nicole and I learned to scuba dive there and it is the most chillaxin place you can imagine. Cheap, with aqua blue water, white sand, and great food. You can’t beat it. From Georgia, I’m guessing you could get to BZE pretty cheaply.

      Thanks for Caribbean-gem-wanderlusting with us!

  3. bradleyjai says:

    I fixed the Chase Sapphire Preferred link. Somehow I had the wrong link in there and it was the Chase Sapphire with only 10k bonus points.

  4. Brandon says:

    You should include BA Avios too!

    • Sheldon says:

      @brandon- Thanks for the heads up. Avios are an incredible option when flying from LA, SF, SEA, or anywhere else that has a direct flight from the west coast. Thanks for reminding us.

  5. Pingback: Eight Great Free Honeymoon Nights at Resort in Indonesia - Travel Tips For World Wanderlusters

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