Trip Report: Use Miles To Get To Hawaii for Less than $150
I’m constantly thinking about how can I maximize my points to get to a destination or staying at that destination. I will show you how I used my points for the best redemption uses for both hotel and flights. This past March I took a trip to Honolulu for a friend’s wedding. This report only covers the cost for hotels, airfare, and ground transportation. Not for dining, activities and other travel expenses.
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Best Airline Awards to Get There:
The main airport at Oahu island is the Honolulu International Airport (HNL). There are a lot of award options to get there but the best airlines to redeem your points would definitely have to be British Airways. However, this is only applicable to West Coast residents and if you live near an Alaska Airline airport hub. If you live in other regions I would suggest going with Korean Airlines.
British Airways Avios = 25,000 points + taxes/fees (West Coast only)
For British Airways Avios you would need to redeem these flights on Alaska Airlines, a travel partner of BA.
Korean Airlines = 25,000 points + taxes/fees (Anywhere in US)
You would need to redeem these flights on Delta in order to take advantage of the 25K redemption.
There are other airlines but they won’t be as lucrative as these two. We took advantage of British Airways Avios since San Jose International Airport is an Alaska Airline hub. We only used 25,000 British Airways Avios + $20 in taxes and fees each for our flights.
I was able to find flights from SJC-HNL easily using Alaska Airline’s search engine. In order to book flights on Alaska Airlines, you will need to call British Airways and book through the phone.
You will definitely need to be flexible in your dates because award flights are very limited when it comes to finding availability. British Airways only recognizes lowest coach award flights in their systems so those are the only redeemable Alaska Airline flights you can book with British Airways. In addition, the flight needs to be nonstop because British Airways award system is based on distance not region based.
Where to stay:
While there are definitely a lot of hotel choices to choose from. I simply chose to go with Hyatt because getting Chase UR points are one of the easiest points to earn. While there are two Hyatt properties on the island, Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort & Spa and Hyatt Place Waikiki Beach, they both are different categories. One being a category 5 and the other a category 3, respectively. Originally we decided to go with the Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort & Spa (Category 5) and use the Cash & Points option. However, when I called the Hyatt Gold Passport reservation they did not have availability for cash and points option. So we ended up going with Hyatt Place Waikiki Beach. It was a solid choice because it helped stretch out our points because we would have paid a 8,000 points difference per night if we decided to go with the Hyatt Regency and pay full price of points for each night.
Since the wedding was going to be in North Shore and our hotel was in Waikiki. We definitely had to get a Car Rental. You’d be surprise that you can use points to get car rentals but I did not have any credit with any car rental programs. So we had to pay cash up front for our rental. My first choice in looking for the best car rental deals would have to be Costco. We ended up only paying $109 for our car rental. Which I think was a great value for 4 days.