Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard® review
A credit card with useful perks and benefits for Hawaiian Airlines regulars.
- Get this card if you’re a frequent Hawaiian Airlines flyer.
- Pick something else if you’re an occasional traveler.
- Apply with good to excellent credit score of 670 or higher.
Miles as welcome offer
Up to 3x
15.99%, 19.99% or 24.99%
Purchase APR (variable)
|Product Name||Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard®|
|Purchase APR||15.99%, 19.99% or 24.99% variable|
|Balance transfer APR||0% intro for the first 15 billing cycles (then 15.99%, 19.99% or 24.99% variable)|
|Balance transfer fee||$5 or 3% of the transaction, whichever is greater|
|Cash advance rate||25.24% variable|
|Cash advance fee||$10 or 5% of the cash advance amount, whichever is greater|
|Foreign transaction fee||None|
|Interest free period||Up to 23 days|
|Late payment fee||Up to $39|
|Returned payment fee||Up to $39|
|Additional cardholder fee||$0|
Kliment Dukovski is a credit cards writer. He's written over 600 articles to help readers find and compare the best credit cards. Kliment has also written on money transfers, home loans and more. Previously, he ghostwrote guides and articles on foreign exchange, stock market trading and cryptocurrencies.
The Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard® may be the right choice for a niche flyer — and most helpful if you fly to and from Hawaii often. But there are other things to consider if you’re thinking about picking up the card.
The signup bonus is relatively easy to obtain, and is enough for a one-way flight between North America and Hawaii in the Coach Saver fare class. You also get other solid perks, like no foreign transaction fees, a yearly bonus and a one-time discount.
Spend $2,000 in the first 90 days of card membership to earn 60,000 bonus miles. This is relatively easy to earn, and has a solid value.
First checked bag free.
The primary cardholder gets their first checked bag free when they purchase an eligible ticket through Hawaiian Airlines using their card. This perk can save you $25 per flight.
One-time companion discount.
Get a one-time 50% discount for your companion for a round-trip coach travel ticket between Hawaii and North America. Depending on how far your travel, you can save about $450.
Earn 3x miles on eligible Hawaiian Airlines purchases. You’ll also earn 2x miles on gas, dining and grocery store purchases, and 1x points on everything else. Redeem miles for flights, hotels, rental cars and gift certificates.
How to earn additional miles
You can purchase miles in increments of 500 if you need additional miles to redeem a reward.
You can also earn miles when flying with Hawaiian Airlines partners. Some of them include:
- Japan Airlines
- Virgin Atlantic
- Korean Air
- China Airlines
Earn miles when you stay at certain hotels by being a member of the hotel’s loyalty program and providing your Hawaiian membership number when checking in. Hotels that you can earn miles with include:
- Marriott hotels. Up to 2 miles per dollar.
- Starwood hotels. 3 miles per dollar.
- Hyatt hotels. Up to 5,000 miles.
- Hilton hotels. Redeem Hilton Honor points for HawaiianMiles — 1.5 Hilton Honors points are worth 1 HawaiianMiles point.
- Alohilani resort. Up to 1,500 miles per night.
- Maui Coast hotel. 150 miles per night.
- Prince Resorts Hawaii. 5,000 miles and fourth night free.
If you rent a car from AVIS, Budget or Payless car rental companies, or if you shop at certain locations in Hawaii, you can earn additional miles.
Download the HawaiianMiles Marketplace app and log in to your HawaiianMiles membership account to see all locations where you can earn Hawaiian Miles.
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Intro APR period on balance transfers.
Get a 0% intro APR period on balance transfers for the first 15 billing cycles following your account opening. Balance transfers must be made within the first 45 days of card membership to qualify for the intro APR. After the intro period is up, a variable APR of 15.99%, 19.99% or 24.99% applies.
No foreign transaction fees.
Use this card when you travel abroad without incurring any international transaction fees. Other cards have fees of up to 3% of each transaction.
Companion ticket discount.
Get a $100 discount for a companion every year on your credit card anniversary.
Once you spend $10,000 in a calendar year, you’ll get 5,000 bonus miles — a $50 value.
You can send and receive miles from your friends and family up to 10 times annually without paying any fees for the transfers.
What to watch out for
Balance transfer limitations.
To use the intro APR period, make sure your balance transfers post within 45 days of your account opening. For each transfer, you’ll pay either $5 or 3% of the transaction, whichever is greater. If your transfer amount exceeds your credit limit, Barclays — the card issuer — may decline your transfer or may only accept a partial amount.
To own the card, you’ll pay $99 each year. The fee isn’t waived for the first year, but if you travel often, you’ll likely be able to easily offset the fee.
Potentially high APR.
Depending on your credit, you can have a purchase APR of 15.99%, 19.99% or 24.99% variable.
For any late or returned payments you make, expect to pay up to $39. This is one of the rare cards that doesn’t have a penalty APR.
How to make the annual fee worth it
The one-time 50% discount for a companion’s round-trip coach ticket can more than cover the annual fee in the first year. For a $500 round-trip flight, that’s a savings of around $250.
Long-term, the card is worth keeping if you take someone on a trip every year: The $100 companion-ticket discount makes up for the annual fee.
HawaiianMiles are worth around 1.2 cents apiece. If you can earn around 7,500 miles from your card every year, your bonus miles will outweigh your annual fee.
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Case study: Marie’s experience
Senior Publishing Support
I live in Hawaii and used to own the Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard®. When I had the card, I loved that it offered 2X points on gas, dining and at grocery stores. I was able to quickly earn points and enjoy trips to the mainland.
I cancelled the card a few years ago because there was a foreign transaction fee at the time. I frequently travel to Canada, and any time I made purchases, I was charged 3%. My second issue was that Hawaiian Airlines® only travels to certain places. So if you want to travel outside their routes, you have to call customer service and spend more points to get to your destination. The points you quickly earn can be used up just as quickly depending on where you’re traveling.
I noticed that the card finally offers features that are on par with the competition, though. Based on the site, it looks like there’s no more foreign transaction fee, they’ve added the annual companion discount and free first checked bag. If they offered priority boarding, I might reconsider this card.
How does a balance transfer work with this card?
Balance transfers come with a fee of either $5 or 3% of the transaction, whichever is greater. This means that the fee for a $1,000 balance transfer is $30.
If you request an amount that exceeds your credit limit, Barclays can decline your request or accept a partial amount. Requests for a balance transfer from another Barclays account are immediately declined.
Balance transfers initiated during the card application can be canceled within 10 days of your card being approved. All you need to do is call the number on the back of your card.
What should I know before I apply?
To apply for the Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard®, you must be at least 18 years old and a US resident. Residents of Puerto Rico and US territories are not eligible.
You’ll need to provide information, such as:
- Full name and contact information
- Employment and financial information.
- Social Security number and date of birth
- Mother’s maiden name
What credit score do I need?
You’ll have a better chance if you apply with a good to excellent credit score of 670 or higher. With a better credit score, you’ll get a lower APR and a higher credit line.
Which partner airlines can I fly with HawaiianMiles?
Aside from Hawaiian Airlines, where the redemption value is highest, you can redeem your miles for flights with partner airlines. Some of them include:
- JetBlue. You’ll need 50,000 miles for tickets valued up to $419.
- Korean Air. Between 100,000 and 200,000 miles cover a round-trip flight between South Korea and the US.
- Virgin Atlantic. Between 60,000 and 160,000 miles cover a flight from the UK to US west coast, depending on which class you fly.
- Virgin Australia. Between 100,000 and 200,000 miles cover a flight from Australia to international destinations, depending on which class you fly.
Call HawaiianMiles service center at 877-426-4537 from Monday to Friday 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Hawaii-Aleutian Time to redeem miles for partner flights.
What do customers say about the Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard®?
The Better Business Bureau (BBB) rated Barclays US with an A+. Customers reviews and the BBB rating give the bank a composite score of 3.77 out of 5 stars. Most customers complain about poor customer support for the bank in general.
As for the card itself, some customers consider the number of miles required to redeem a flight ticket to be too high. However, those who often travel between Hawaii and the US claim the card is a good value.
How to apply for the Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard®
- Go to the Barclays US website and select Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard® from the list of cards. Click Apply now.
- Complete the application form with details such as your name, address, Social Security number and date of birth.
- Review your application and submit it.
How long will it take to get my Hawaiian Airlines® World Elite Mastercard®?
Typically, you’ll receive an immediate decision on your application. In rare cases, you may need to wait a few business days to a few weeks until your application is manually approved.
Once approved, expect your card to arrive in the mail within seven to 10 business days.
I got the card. Now what?
- Download Barclays US Mobile banking app. Make payments, access your FICO® score and more.
- Avoid interest. After the close of each billing cycle, you have a grace period of 23 days to pay your balance to avoid paying interest on your purchases.
- Avoid fees. Late and returned payments come with hefty fees of up to $39. Balance transfers and cash advances also come with fees.
- Customer service. If you have questions, contact Barclaycard customer service at 866-928-8598.
This may be a good choice for Hawaiian Airlines regulars. You earn miles by making purchases and flying with Hawaiian Airlines and its partners. Also, staying at certain hotels and by renting cars from certain companies can earn you additional miles.
However, if you’re a casual flyer, you might get more out of a general travel card.
Frequently asked questions