Get to Hawaii for Less: East Coast Strategies

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In the previous four articles, we covered using Singapore Airlines miles, Virgin Atlantic miles, British Airways Avios, and Korean Air miles to get from the mainland United States to Hawaii. Most of the cheaper options come from flying out of West Coast gateway cities, which makes sense as they are only half the distance to Hawaii vs. departing from the East Coast.  But what if you do live on the … [Read more...]

Get to Hawaii for Less: Amazing Deals from Korean Air

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While I was writing these articles, my goal was to include ALL of the meaningful ways to get to Hawaii and ignore the programs that aren't easy to accrue to. Y'know, the ones that only transfer in from SPG and don't have a co-branded card. So I was about to discount Korean Airlines as one to be ignored, since their program is a bit nichy and somewhat difficult to redeem on. AND THEN I … [Read more...]

Get to Hawaii for Less Using Avios from the West Coast

Man, isn't that a pretty Avios map! 12,500 each way in coach on all of these routes. Alaska is in Red, American is in Green

In the last two articles, we covered two of the cheapest ways to get to Hawaii on miles: using Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer (to book travel on United Airlines and Virgin America) and using Virgin Atlantic miles (to book travel on Virgin America only). But there is one more secret weapon to get to Hawaii from the West Coast: British Airways Avios. British Airways partners with American Airlines … [Read more...]

Get to Hawaii for Less Using Virgin Atlantic Miles

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Last time, I walked through the rates for redeeming Singapore's KrisFlyer miles on the new Virgin America routes to Hawaii from San Francisco (starting December 3rd, 2015). But then I thought, “Can we do better?" Yes! ...If you live west of Dallas. Virgin America also has another partner with a mileage program that’s easy to accrue miles in — its sister airline Virgin Atlantic! (Virgin … [Read more...]

Get to Hawaii for Less Using Singapore Airlines Miles on Virgin America

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As some of you may know, Virgin America is going to be starting service from San Francisco (SFO) to Honolulu (HNL) and Kahului, Maui (OGG) on December 3rd of this year. Many of you might be planning Christmas in the tropics, so I thought it’d be fun to test the partners and see how many miles it would cost to get there. None of them have updated their charts, yet award seats ARE currently … [Read more...]

What to Do if Family Don’t Understand Miles and Points

During our monthly travel meetup this week, one reader asked an interesting question: We all love earning and redeeming miles, but family and friends rarely understand the value they represent. At what point do you give up trying to explain how it all works? And what do you do next? It's an interesting question because it speaks to both psychology and economics. Why should I care at all if … [Read more...]

Why Award Nights Are Difficult to Find at the Best Hotels


Many hotels aren't owned by the brand -- they're independently owned franchises that contract to display the brand's "flag." The brand establishes certain standards that can be incredibly detailed while also taking a cut of the hotel's revenue in exchange for marketing. That marketing includes loyalty programs and the points that you earn with them. It's an arrangement that works pretty well … [Read more...]