Hawaiian Airlines Business card review – earn up to 70,000 bonus miles

Feb 25, 2020

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Hawaiian Airlines® Business Mastercard® Card overview

The Hawaiian Airlines® Business Mastercard® is issued by Barclays. The card has a solid intro offer and some yearly perks based on spending, but beyond that, it offers little incentive to keep it in your wallet long term. Card Rating*: ⭐⭐½

*Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG’s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.

Hawaiian Airlines isn’t part of any of the big three airline alliances, and it operates a limited network of flights, which further hinders the value you can get from Hawaiian Airlines’ loyalty program. However, that’s not to say Hawaiian Airlines miles are worthless. TPG pegs them at a value of 0.9 cents each, and if you can snag a solid welcome bonus on one of the carrier’s credit cards, you may be able to get some decent value from the program. One such card is the Hawaiian Airlines Business Mastercard. Today we’ll analyze the card’s details to see how it compares to other top airline credit cards, and whether it deserves a spot in your credit card arsenal.

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Bear in mind that Hawaiian Airlines is transfer partner with Amex Membership Rewards and Marriott, so you have options for topping up your Hawaiian Airlines account. This also means that you can actually earn Hawaiian Airline miles indirectly at a better rate with the some of the best Amex cards out there.

The information for the Hawaiian Airlines Business Mastercard has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

In This Post

Who is this card for?

This is a business credit card, so to be eligible you will need some sort of business. However, it might not be as hard as think. You don’t necessarily need to be running a full-time operation. You can qualify for a business card as an independent contractor, freelancer or even with a part-time side hustle.

If you already have a bunch of Hawaiian Airlines miles and want to add to your collection, this card is a great way to do that. Also, if you’re planing on taking any cash flights to Hawaii in the next year and can take advantage of the 50% companion discount, you can easily save many times the cost of the card’s $99 annual fee with that perk alone.

Hawaiian Airlines A330 Aircraft
If you can find the cheapest awards, this intro offer is a solid way to save on your next trip to Hawaii. (Photo courtesy of Hawaiian Airlines)

This card can also be a good option if you’re trying to stay under Chase’s 5/24 rule, because as a Barclays business card, it won’t add to your 5/24 count.

The information for the The Hawaiian Airlines Business Mastercard has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Sign-up bonus

You can earn up to 70,000 bonus miles when you open a Hawaiian Airlines Business card. You’ll earn the first 60,000 miles after spending $1,000 in the first 90 days from opening the account. Then you can earn an extra 10,000 bonus miles when you add an employee card (within the first 30 days) and make a purchase with that card in the first 90 days.

As part of the introductory offer, you also get a 50% discount on a coach companion fare between Hawaii and North America. The discount companion fare is valid for 13 months from when you open the account, and the discount does not apply to taxes or fees.

Main benefits and perks

The Hawaiian Airlines Business card is woefully low on useful benefits. It doesn’t even comes with basic perks, like free checked bags or priority boarding.

That being said, you can earn up to 40,000 bonus miles every year you keep the card, if you hit the following spending thresholds:

  • Earn 20,000 bonus miles with $50,000-$99,999 in annual purchases
  • Earn 40,000 bonus miles (in total) with $100,000 or more in annual purchases

That higher bonus tier is worth up to $360 (according to TPG’s valuations), but it requires such a huge amount of spending that it doesn’t make sense to earn it. As you’ll see, there are much more rewarding options for your business spending.

The other ongoing benefits include the ability to share miles between Hawaiian Airlines accounts without a fee. Normally, transfers between accounts incur a $25 service fee and cost one cent per mile transferred. Having a Hawaiian Airlines card (business or consumer) also gets you access to the same discounted awards that are available to Hawaiian Airlines elite status members. Finally, you’ll pay no foreign transaction fees on purchases made outside the U.S.

With the exception of the up to 40,000 annual bonus miles, you can get all of the same ongoing perks with the consumer Hawaiian Airlines card (plus free checked bags). For a complete comparison of the two cards, read our Hawaiian Airlines personal vs. Hawaiian Airlines business card showdown.

How to earn points

In addition to the sign-up bonus and the annual bonus miles (if you meet the spending requirements), you’ll earn:

  • 3x miles on eligible Hawaiian Airlines purchases
  • 2x miles on gas, dining and office supply store purchases
  • One mile per dollar everywhere else

If you’re fiercely loyal to Hawaiian Airlines, this could offer a decent return, but again, there are other cards out there that are better suited for these particular bonus categories.

How to redeem miles

Hawaiian Airlines prices awards dynamically, but it does publish an award chart of sorts that provides the price ranges into which awards will fall. The cheapest you’ll pay for a one-way flight to Hawaii from the West Coast is 20,000 miles; from the East Coast it’s 30,000 miles. That’s the low end, but flights from/to the West Coast top out at 95,000 miles each way and to/from the East Coast can cost up to 130,000 each way.

Related Reading: Best ways to redeem points and miles on Hawaiian Airlines

If you happen to have Hawaiian Airlines elite status or a Hawaiian Airlines card, you’ll have access to these discounted award prices:

Even on the off chance that you can find the lowest level of award, these prices don’t compare favorably to other options. For example, you can book flights on United Airlines using Singapore Airlines miles, and it’ll only cost you 35,000 miles round-trip from anywhere in the mainland U.S. You can do even better with Turkish Airlines miles (transfer partner with Citi ThankYou and Marriott), as the airline only charges 15,000 miles round-trip to book United flights from the U.S. to Hawaii.

You can also redeem Hawaiian Airlines miles for flights with JetBlue, Japan Airlines, Virgin Australia and Virgin Atlantic. There is a separate award chart for each partner, and you can view them all here. A few of the standout partner awards are round-trip Korean Air awards within Asia for 30,000 miles in economy or 60,000 miles in business class, and round-trip business-class flights with Virgin Atlantic between the U.K. and the east coast of North America for 125,000 miles.

(Photo by Nicky Kelvin/The Points Guy.)
Virgin Atlantic 787-9 Upper Class. (Photo by Nicky Kelvin/The Points Guy.)

You can also convert Hawaiian Airlines miles to Hilton points at a 1:1.5 ratio. TPG values Hilton points at .6 cents each, so you’re getting roughly the same value (.9 cents per mile) if you transfer to Hilton. In the right situation, this could be a decent way to redeem your miles, especially if you’re booking an expensive Hilton hotel or taking advantage of Hilton’s 5th night free on award bookings.

Alternatives to the Hawaiian Airlines Business card

If you want to earn the most for your Hawaiian Airlines airfare purchases, a better bet for your company is the The Business Platinum Card® from American Express. When you book airfare through Amex Travel or directly with an airline, you’ll earn 5x Membership Rewards points. You can then transfer those points to Hawaiian Airlines at a 1:1 ratio, but there are even more valuable Amex transfer partners to consider. With the Amex Business Platinum you’ll also get up to $200 in annual airline incidental fee credits with your selected airline. You can choose Hawaiian Airlines and use those credits to offset all sorts of fees, like change fees, pet fees or checked bag fees.

That being said, the Amex Business Platinum does have a $595 annual fee (see rates and fees), so it’s not exactly in the same price range as the Hawaiian Airlines Business card.

RELATED: Is the Amex Business Platinum worth the annual fee?

The Blue Business®️ Plus Credit Card from American Express is the perfect business credit card with no annual fee (see rates and fees). It earns 2x Amex points on the first $50,000 in purchases each year (then 1x). TPG values Amex points at two cents each, so you’re getting a 4% return on your first $50,000 in spending, which is higher than what you’d earn with the Hawaiian Airlines Business card, even when purchasing Hawaiian Airlines airfare.

Bottom line

The Hawaiian Airlines Business card has an intro offer that is worth considering, especially if you can also take advantage of the 50% companion discount. However, it lacks the ongoing benefits to make it a smart card to hold onto long term. And even if you love earning Hawaiian Airlines miles, there are other cards that are more rewarding.

You can transfer Amex Membership Rewards points to Hawaiian Airlines at a 1:1 ratio, so using a card like the Amex Business Platinum to earn 5x Amex points on flights (booked with Amex Travel) is the easiest way to rack up the miles for Hawaiian airfare purchases. And the Amex Business Platinum also comes with up to $200 in annual airline fee credits, which could be applied to your Hawaiian Airlines checked bag fees, since Hawaiian Airlines Business cards don’t come with a free-bag perk.

For rates and fees of the Amex Business Platinum card, please click here.
For rates and fees of the Blue Business Plus Card, please click here.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

WELCOME OFFER: 60,000 Points

TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,200

CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

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More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on orders over $12 for a minimum of one year on qualifying food purchases with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Earn 5X points on Lyft rides through March 2022. That’s 3X points in addition to the 2X points you already earn on travel.
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
17.49% - 24.49% Variable
Annual Fee
$95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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