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JetBlue and Hawaiian Airlines have been partners since 2012. However, for the past decade, redeeming TrueBlue points for Hawaiian flights has been stuck in the 20th century. To book Hawaiian flights with JetBlue points, you'd have to call a TrueBlue agent and book it over the phone.
Thankfully, that's no longer the case. JetBlue just added the ability to book Hawaiian award flights online, making the booking process much more convenient. This new functionality comes just a week after JetBlue added online booking for Qatar awards — marking the first time TrueBlue members could redeem points for partner awards online.
However, it's not all good news. Along with making Hawaiian Airlines awards bookable online, it seems JetBlue has revamped its unpublished award chart for Hawaiian flights, making some awards a lot more expensive to book.
Here's what you need to know about these changes — and how to search and book Hawaiian awards through JetBlue's website.
Basics of Booking Hawaiian Awards Using JetBlue TrueBlue
JetBlue doesn't publish award pricing or any details of how its loyalty partnership with Hawaiian Airlines works. Here's what we've been able to piece together.
- Award pricing seems to be zone-based and by-segment. Unlike awards on JetBlue — which are roughly based on the cash cost of the flight — Hawaiian Airlines awards are based on a fixed but unpublished award chart. Flights from the central/eastern U.S. and connecting itineraries cost more than nonstop from the West Coast to Hawaii.
- Both economy and business class awards are bookable. JetBlue TrueBlue members can redeem points for Hawaiian Airlines economy and first class.
- Hawaiian must release saver availability to book a flight with JetBlue TrueBlue points. HawaiianMiles uses a multi-tier award chart for its own awards, meaning you can almost always book a Hawaiian flight with HawaiianMiles. That's not the case with TrueBlue awards on Hawaiian Airlines. Hawaiian Airlines must price an award at saver (“Main Cabin 1” and “First Class 1”) levels for the flight to be bookable through JetBlue.
- Award availability doesn't quite match Hawaiian Airlines' website. I've found a few awards bookable at saver rates on Hawaiian Airlines' website that aren't bookable through JetBlue's website. However, award availability mostly matches.
JetBlue Award Chart for Hawaiian Airlines Flights
JetBlue no longer published an award chart for Hawaiian Airlines awards. And current award rates don't match the Hawaiian Airlines award chart JetBlue previously published. Here's the current award pricing that I've been able to piece together through award searches:
|Intra-Hawaii nonstop flights||5,000||10,000|
|Los Angeles (LAX) to Honolulu (HNL)||20,000||50,000|
|Phoenix (LAX) to Honolulu (HNL)||20,000||50,000|
|Los Angeles (LAX) to Honolulu (HNL) via Maui (OGG)||25,000||60,000|
|Austin (AUS) to Honolulu (HNL)||37,900||99,900|
|New York (JFK) to Honolulu (HNL)||37,900||TBD|
Undoubtedly, the best redemptions are nonstop Hawaiian flights from the western U.S. to Hawaii. For example, fly Hawaiian Airlines from Phoenix (PHX) to Honolulu (HNL) for 20,000 TrueBlue points in economy or 50,000 points in first class (which JetBlue lists as business class):
However, it's a lot more costly to book awards from the central or eastern U.S. Economy awards cost just shy of 40,000 points each way while first class awards soar to 99,900 points one-way — if you can even find saver availability.
How to Get TrueBlue Points
JetBlue is a transfer partner of several major transferrable point programs — although not as many as it used to be. You can transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards or Citi ThankYou Points to JetBlue at a 1:1 transfer ratio. Meanwhile, JetBlue points typically only transfer at a 5:4 transfer ratio in increments of 250 Membership Rewards points. However, an ongoing Amex-JetBlue transfer bonus temporarily bumps that rate to 1:1.
You can also earn JetBlue TrueBlue points directly through JetBlue credit cards.
Should You Transfer Amex Points to JetBlue or Hawaiian?
Both JetBlue TrueBlue and Hawaiian HawaiianMiles are American Express Membership Rewards transfer partners — although not at identical rates:
That means Amex cardholders have two choices when booking Hawaiian awards: JetBlue TrueBlue or Hawaiian HawaiianMiles. Thankfully, this generally isn't a tough decision. Between a better transfer ratio, generally better award pricing, additional award availability, and no penalty for booking a connecting flight, booking Hawaiian Airlines award flights through HawaiianMiles is almost always going to make more sense.
Let's take an award from Austin (AUS) to Honolulu (HNL). If there's saver space, award travelers can book this award for 20,000 HawaiianMiles in economy or 40,000 miles in a lie-flat first class seat.
Booking the same award through JetBlue would cost 37,900 TrueBlue points in economy or a whopping 99,900 points in business class (Side note: I guess JetBlue didn't want the award price to be six digits?!)
The exception: Intra-Hawaii flights
There's one potential exception to the general rule of transferring points to HawaiianMiles instead of TrueBlue to book Hawaiian Airlines award flights: Intra-Hawaii flights.
Per its award chart, Hawaiian Airlines charges no less than 7,500 HawaiianMiles for intra-Hawaii flights — or 15,000 miles if you want to splurge for first class on the short flight.
However, JetBlue only charges 5,000 TrueBlue points for Hawaiian Airlines economy or 10,000 for first class.
With that said, you may want to actually price out awards, as Hawaiian Airlines often prices intra-Hawaii awards below the published award chart — such as these awards for just 4,000 points:
After more than a decade of partnership, JetBlue TrueBlue members can finally book Hawaiian Airlines awards flights on JetBlue's website — rather than having to call. That makes these award bookings much easier to book.
However, it seems JetBlue took this opportunity to revamp award rates. While rates from the West Coast to Hawaii aren't bad, economy awards from central and eastern U.S. to Hawaii now cost just under 40k TrueBlue points, and first class awards are just under 100k points. That means you're generally going to be better off booking awards through HawaiianMiles — or book cash fares through travel portals — rather than transferring points to JetBlue.
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