The Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard® from Barclays is an excellent option for those who travel frequently along routes served by Hawaiian Airlines, or if you’re looking to score discounted tickets for your next Hawaiian vacation!
So is this card right for you? Let’s find out.
Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard® Review:
Welcome Bonus (rating: 5 out of 5)
You’ll receive 60,000 bonus miles (worth ~$540) after spending $2,000 on eligible purchases in the first 90 days of account opening. For the low spend requirement, this is a fantastic welcome offer. In addition, you’ll be eligible for a one-time 50% companion discount for roundtrip coach travel between Hawaii and North America. Even if you only get the card to use for the first 3 months – it’s well worth a 50% discount on roundtrip airfare to Hawaii.
Rating rationale: The welcome bonus gives you 6x the value of the annual fee. But on top of that, the 50% companion discount gives you hundreds of additional dollars in value.
Annual Fee (rating: 5 out of 5)
The $99 annual fee is waived during your first year. If you don’t like the card or find yourself unlikely to travel on Hawaiian airlines in the future, you can always cancel within the first year. If you’re preparing for a trip to Hawaii, simply open the card, hit the bonus, and take advantage of your miles and companion discount. Don’t want to keep the card? Cancel it at the end of your 1st year. But if you plan on making repeated trips to Hawaii, the card is a great way to earn redeemable miles and take advantage of perks like a free checked bag on every flight.
Rating rationale: Even if you do decide to keep the card, it’s worth a place in your wallet. If you allocate the value of the welcome bonus across future years and consider the waived first year annual fee, your annual fee is covered for seven years.
Earning Points: (rating: 3 out of 5)
With the Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard®, you’ll earn 3 miles on every $1 spent on eligible purchases at Hawaiian Airlines, 2 miles on gas, dining and grocery store purchases, and 1 mile on everything else. Again, if you plan to make multiple trips to the Hawaiian islands over the next few years, the 2x bonus on gas, dining, and grocery store purchases will turbocharge your miles balance and get you to that next award ticket in no time.
Rating rationale: The 3X points multiplier is great if you fly Hawaiian frequently but somewhat irrelevant if not. The 2X point multiplier on gas, dining, and grocery store purchases is a nice kicker – many cards don’t offer point multipliers on gas and grocery store purchases. However, cards like the Gold Card from American Express® offer 4X bonuses on dining and grocery store purchases.
Travel Credits (rating: 4 out of 5)
In addition to the mileage bonus, you receive an annual $100 companion discount for roundtrip travel between Hawaii and North America on Hawaiian Airlines after each account anniversary.
Rating rationale: Other cards either don’t offer this benefit or offer credits in lower amounts. This is certainly a nice bonus if you plan on making trips to Hawaii at least an annual occurrence.
Other Travel Perks (rating: 3 out of 5)
The Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard® offers some additional travel benefits as well. While not at the level of a premium rewards card like the Platinum Card from American Express® or the Chase Sapphire Reserve, some benefits are still handy:
- First checked bag free on eligible bags when you use the Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard® to purchase eligible tickets direct from the airline
- No foreign transaction fees
- No blackout dates
- Discounted award flights on Hawaiian Airlines
- Share Miles allows you to send and receive miles from family and friends through www.HawaiianAirlines.com without a fee
Rating rationale: A free checked bag and no foreign transaction fees is nice, but other benefits, such as lounge access, priority boarding, or discounts on in-flight purchases are missing. If you want your TSA PreCheck fee covered, lost luggage reimbursement, lounge access, extended warranty protection, and more, cards like the Chase Sapphire Reserve are the way to go.
Should You Get the Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard®?
If you fly Hawaiian airlines at least once per year, then yes. The 3X and 2X point multipliers are strong, and the welcome bonus is substantial, especially relative to the annual fee. The main downside of the card is that the benefits are – obviously – Hawaiian Airlines specific. If you travel regularly on routes served by Hawaiian airlines, this card is worth a spot in your wallet.