Hawaiian Airlines Status Match: How to Request It

Hawaiian has no publicly marketed status match program, but you can always give asking a shot.
June Casagrande
By June Casagrande 

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Some airlines advertise if you have elite status with one of their competitors, you can parlay that into status with their airline. Hawaiian Airlines isn't one of them. Nowhere on their website will you find instructions on how to turn your United or Delta or American Airlines elite flyer cred into Pualani elite status on Hawaiian. But that doesn't mean you're out of luck. In fact, trial Pualani Gold or Platinum status may be yours for the asking. The key is asking.

Here's what you need to know about Hawaiian Airlines' loyalty program, HawaiianMiles, and how to status match your elite flier benefits from another airline into Hawaiian's Pualani elite status.

How the HawaiianMiles program works

Anyone can join Hawaiian Airlines' frequent flier program, HawaiianMiles, for free. Members who fly the airline frequently can earn Pualani Elite status, which comes in two tiers: 

  • Pualani Gold.

  • Pualani Platinum. 

Typically, to earn Pualani Gold, you must fly 20,000 miles or 30 flight segments on qualifying flights on the airline during the calendar year. To earn Pualani Platinum status, you must fly 40,000 miles or complete 60 flight segments. Once you've attained elite status with Hawaiian, you enjoy perks when you fly.

  • Two free checked bags.

  • Earn 50% more miles when you fly Hawaiian on a ticket purchased with cash.

  • Access to Premier Club airport lounges.

  • Zone 2 priority boarding.

  • Access to priority TSA security lines, where available.

  • Free selection of preferred seats at booking.

  • Free selection of Extra Comfort seats at check-in, if available. 

  • 50% discount on upgrades to first class on neighbor island flights.

  • Varying discounts on upgrades to first class on North American flights.

  • Earn 500 HawaiianMiles on neighbor island flights.

  • No fee to fly same-day standby to neighboring islands.

  • Three free checked bags.

  • Earn 100% more miles when you fly Hawaiian on a ticket purchased with cash.

  • Access to Premier Club airport lounges.

  • Access to the Plumeria Lounge in Honolulu and select international partner lounges.

  • Zone 1 priority boarding.

  • Access to priority TSA security lines, where available.

  • Free selection of Preferred seats at booking.

  • Free selection of Extra Comfort seats at check-in, if available. 

  • Free upgrades to first class on neighbor island flights.

  • Earn certificates for free upgrades to first class on North American flights.

  • Deeply discounted paid first-class upgrades on North American flights.

  • Earn 500 HawaiianMiles on neighbor island flights.

  • No fee to fly same-day standby to neighboring islands.

How to get a status match on Hawaiian Airlines

If you have elite status on another airline, you might be able to use it as leverage to get Pualani elite status on Hawaiian on a trial basis. Which airlines? What status levels? How long is the trial basis? Hawaiian doesn't say. The only way to determine if you can get a Hawaiian Airlines status match based on your airline is to ask. Here are the steps to take.

Read up on how status matches work with other airlines

Before you ask Hawaiian for a status match, you should understand what you're asking for. 

With many airlines, status matches are available on a short-term trial basis — the airlines' way of giving frequent flyers a taste of what their airline has to offer as an incentive to switch loyalties. So, for example, if Hawaiian provides you with a match, it could be on a short-term or trial basis.

Gather your documents

You'll need to prove to Hawaiian Airlines that you have status with another airline when you request a status match. The documentation Hawaiian Airlines will likely ask to see includes the following: 

  • Mileage statements that show the flights you completed to earn status on the other airline.

  • A copy of your membership card from the other airline that shows the date your elite status became valid.

  • Your HawaiianMiles member number.

Be prepared to submit these and possibly other documents that prove your elite status with a competing airline. 

Submit your request to Hawaiian Airlines

There's no form to request a status match from Hawaiian specifically. Instead, use the airline's Make a Request form. Then, under Topic, choose HawaiianMiles. Under Subtopic, choose Other.

In the Message portion of the form, say that you're requesting a match to Pualani elite status based on your status with another airline, including the airline name and your status level. Mention in this section which documents you upload as proof of your current status. Then attach those documents in the fields indicated at the bottom of Hawaiian's contact form. 

You should get an automated reply telling you your request was received and when to expect an answer from Hawaiian Airlines (likely within a few days). 

Who should consider a Hawaiian Airlines status match?

If you have elite status on another airline and you're planning to fly Hawaiian Airlines a few times this year, it may be worth requesting a status match. Remember, Hawaiian has limited routes, mainly connecting the Hawaiian islands to the U.S. mainland, to each other and certain destinations in the South Pacific and Asia.

If you often fly within the continental U.S. or to Europe, Africa or Asia, it might make more sense to give your loyalty to an airline that can credit you on all the flights you take instead of just to Hawaii. But if you expect to travel mainly within or to Hawaii or Hawaiian Airlines' other destinations, Pualani status gives you more reasons to fly this airline.

Hawaiian Airlines status match recapped

Hawaiian Airlines doesn't advertise that it will match your elite status with another airline, but it might. So gather your documents, navigate to Hawaiian's online customer request form and ask. It just might get you even more aloha in the skies.


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