I tweeted this deal first from @MileValueAlerts. Follow @MileValueAlerts on Twitter and follow these directions to get a text message every time I tweet from that account. I tweet from @MileValueAlerts only a few times a month because it is designed to be used only for the best and most limited-time deals–like mistake fares–so that you aren’t bombarded by text messages.

American Airlines is offering roundtrip First Class flights between Atlanta and Hawaii for $1,152. Travel dates are available now through the end of the calendar–for more specific travel date windows see below.

Considering the difficulty of finding premium cabin award space to Hawaii these days, this cheap fare is interesting. It is especially interesting if you have a American Express Business Platinum and can pay with points–it would only cost you 57,600 Membership Rewards total.

Contents

  1. When are the cheap fares?
  2. How good is the product?
  3. Why Hawaii?
  4. Mileage Earning
  5. Baggage Allowance
  6. Best Way to Buy the Ticket

Roundtrip First Class Between Atlanta and Hawaii

The cheap fares can be found with outbound travel dates between:

  • April 10 & May 25, 2017
  • August 15 & November 15, 2017
  • November 20 & December 12, 2017
  • December 26, 2017 and March 7, 2018

According to FlyerTalk contributor CokeandTaco, no stopovers are permitted and you also must book the ticket at least 14 days in advance. All routes have one connection, either through Dallas, Los Angeles, or Phoenix from what I saw.

The easiest way to see the cheap fares is on Google Flights. I brought up the following calendar of prices between Atlanta and Honolulu on Google Flights.

The cheapest fares are to Honolulu…

…but there are also good prices available to the other islands.

How Good is the Product?

It depends on which route you purchase as to what plane you fly. If you want a totally lie-flat seat, your best bet is routing through Dallas, flying a Boeing 777 or 767 between Texas and Hawaii. Google Flights now shows you the type of seat the aircraft flies in your search results which is nice. Pay attention to it.

Why Hawaii?

Beaches, surfing, mountains, hiking, and you don’t need a passport.

Mileage Earning

If you credit to American Airlines, assuming you have no status, you’ll earn 5 American Airlines miles per dollar spent (not including government imposed taxes). For this ticket that means you’ll earn about 5,270 redeemable miles ($1,054 x 5). Elite Qualifying Segments, Elite Qualifying Dollars, and Elite Qualifying Miles earned will vary by route. Learn more about potential earnings on aa.com.

But you don’t have to credit miles earned to the airline’s program that you’re flying. Here’s how the process of crediting to a partner works.

Crediting to Alaska Airlines is probably a better idea as you’d earn a ton more redeemable miles (this fare is booking code I–I found that as well as itemized taxes by checking ITA Matrix).

How many exactly will depend on which route you take as earnings depend on distance flown. If you flew ATL-DFW-HNL-DWF-ATL, you’d earn 13,546 redeemable Alaska miles (9,031 x 1.5).

Baggage Allowance

You get a free personal item, free carry on, and two free checked bags up to 70 pounds each included in the ticket price.

Best Way to Buy the Ticket

If you have enough Membership Rewards and the American Express Business Platinum card–which gives you a 50% rebate–you should buy this ticket by Paying with Points (through the Amex Travel Portal). You’d effectively be getting 2 cents of value per point on all Business/First fares after that rebate. A $1,152 roundtrip First Class fare to Hawaii would ultimately cost 57,600 Membership Rewards, which is much less than the 80,000 legacy airline miles you’d pay for such a flight, and even less than the 60,000 Singapore miles you’d pay to fly United Business Class. Not to mention the 57,600 Membership Rewards is all you’d pay. With traditional miles, you’d pay taxes on top of the award. You’d even earn redeemable miles as well as elite qualifying segments/dollars/miles on the trip, which you wouldn’t if you were redeeming miles on the ticket as an award.

If you don’t have an American Express Business Platinum or enough Membership Rewards to Pay with Points through the Amex Travel Portal (115,200 before the rebate) buy it with an Amex Platinum card for 5x earnings. Don’t have one those either? Check out the Best Credit Card to Buy Airfare.

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