Introduction – Getting To Hawaii Using Your MRs, URs and TYPs

One of the questions that I get asked a lot (and I mean, A LOT) is how can I get to Hawaii utilizing either American Express Membership Rewards points, Chase Ultimate Rewards points or Citi Thank You Points. Since I get asked the question so often I figured this would be a great topic for a post series. I will outline each of the three transferable currencies (MRs, URs and TYPs) in their own dedicated post, but my introduction post will provide a brief overview of the various transfer partners for each.

Introduction – Getting To Hawaii Using Your MRs, URs or TYPs
Part I – Getting to Hawaii Using Your MRs
Part II – Getting to Hawaii Using Your URs
Part III – Getting to Hawaii Using Your TYPs

American Express Membership Rewards

American Express offers many cards that earn Membership Rewards points, including their EveryDay card (which earns 20% more MRs every month you make 20 or more purchases with the card). American Express offers several other card options that earn MRs, so I highly encourage you to head over to the American Express site and check out the options.

Amex MRs (much like Chase URs and Citi TYPs) are great points to stockpile because they are so versatile. Your MRs will transfer to 16 different airlines across all 3 major airline alliances. Those airlines include:

AirlineAllianceTransfer RatioTransfer Time
DeltaSkyTeam1:1Same day
AlitaliaSkyTeam1:1Same day
Air France/KLMSkyTeam1:1Same day
AeromexicoSkyTeam1:1Up to 7 days
British AirwaysOneWorld1:0.8Same day
IberiaOneWorld1:0.8Up to 7 days
Cathay PacificOneWorld1:1Up to 7 days
Air CanadaStar Alliance1:1Same day
ANAStar Alliance1:12-4 days
Singapore AirlinesStar Alliance1:1Up to 3 days
Virgin AmericaN/A1:0.5Same day
Virgin AtlanticN/A1:1Same day
Jet BlueN/A1:0.8Same day
Hawaiian AirlinesN/A1:1Same day
El AlN/A50:1Same day
EmiratesN/A1:1Same day

Please note that all of the transfer times are an approximation based on various data points I was able to find. A lot of the transfers that are listed as same day will post nearly instantaneously to your account. With that said, this is a true YMMV (your miles may vary) situation, so just be cognizant of the transfer times when you are creating your plan for your award travel booking(s).

Chase Ultimate Rewards

Chase URs are another great transferable currency to stockpile. Although they do not have as many airline transfer partners as Amex MRs, there are still some great carriers included in the list. My personal favorite Chase card for racking up URs is the Ink Plus card. Chase is pretty strict with their approvals for this card (and other UR earning cards), so if you have picked up more than 5 credit cards in the past 24 months, chances are good you will be denied if you apply for this card, so plan accordingly/carefully.

Chase URs are another great transferable currency to stockpile. Although they do not have as many airline transfer partners as Amex MRs, there are still some great carriers included in the list. Those airlines include:

AirlineAllianceTransfer RatioTransfer Time
Korean AirSkyTeam1:1Same day
British AirwaysOneWorld1:1Same day
Singapore AirlinesStar Alliance1:1Same day
UnitedStar Alliance1:1Same day
Virgin AtlanticN/A1:1Same day
SouthwestN/A1:1Same day

Again, as with MRs, please note that all of the transfer times are an approximation based on various data points I was able to find. With the exception of Singapore Airlines, all of the other UR transfer partners on this list should post the transferred points instantaneously. With that said, this is a true YMMV (your miles may vary) situation, so just be cognizant of the transfer times when you are creating your plan for your award travel booking(s).

Citi Thank You Points

Citi TYPs are points I usually use for booking flights direct through the Citi TYP portal (so I earn elite qualifying mileage for the flights), though Citi does offer a fairly extensive list of airline transfer partners for their TYPs. Those airlines include:

AirlineAllianceTransfer RatioTransfer Time
Air France/KLMSkyTeam1:1Up to 2 days
Garuda IndonesiaSkyTeam1:1Up to 2 days
Cathay PacificOneWorld1:1Same day
Malaysia AirlinesOneWorld1:12-14 days+
QantasOneWorld1:1Up to 2 days
QatarOneWorld1:1Up to 2 days
Eva AirStar Alliance1:1Up to 2 days
Singapore AirlinesStar Alliance1:1Up to 2 days
Thai AirwaysStar Alliance1:1Up to 4 days
EtihadN/A1:1Up to 6 days
Virgin AtlanticN/A1:1Up to 2 days
Virgin AmericaN/A1:0.5Up to 2 days

From the data points I was able to find, it appears that TYPs will take the longest on average to transfer to airline transfer partners. Again, as with MRs and URs, please note that all of the transfer times are an approximation based on various data points. It should also be noted that Malaysian Airlines can take an extended period of time to transfer your TYPs to their frequent flyer program. The reason is that Malaysian Airlines appears to be experiencing some technical issues with the transfers and they can take a good while to be completed. With that said, this is a true YMMV (your miles may vary) situation, so just be cognizant of the transfer times when you are creating your plan for your award travel booking(s).

Final Thoughts

Stay tuned for the next installments on your best redemption options for each transferable currency! Hopefully this guide will give you a better understanding of how to utilize and maximize your MRs, URs and TYPs for travel to Hawaii!

What is your favorite redemption to Hawaii?

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