Alaska Airlines joined the oneworld airline alliance yesterday. Rhys attended a virtual press conference and we will bring you an update on all things oneworld over the long weekend.
For Avios collectors, the move means that you can now earn and spend Avios, and earn British Airways Executive Club tier points, when you fly with Alaska Airlines.
This is not a massive change for Avios collectors, because Alaska and British Airways have had a bilateral partnership for many years.
This is what has changed:
- you can now book Alaska Airlines redemptions online at ba.com, whereas you previously had to call the Executive Club
- you will now earn British Airways Executive Club tier points when you fly with Alaska Airlines – previously you only earned Avios but not tier points
- First Class flights are now coded as Business Class – this means that you need fewer Avios to redeem for them, but you earn fewer Avios when you fly them
- British Airways Executive Club members with Silver or Gold status can now access Alaska Airlines lounges and claim their usual oneworld benefits such as extra baggage allowance
This is how the flights look on ba.com when you redeem:
How many Avios do I need for Alaska Airlines flights?
Alaska flights will price off the British Airways partner chart here:
|Reward flight prices on BA partner airlines (plus taxes, fees and carrier charges)|
|Zone||Distance||Economy||Premium Economy||Business Class||First Class|
|* zone 1 does not apply to internal flights in North America|
Note the small print at the bottom of the chart. There is a minimum charge of 7,500 Avios per one-way economy flight.
What are the taxes and charges?
Virtually nothing, as you would expect on a US domestic flight.
The example above, Seattle to San Francisco, has taxes of just £4 one-way.
How many Avios will I earn when I fly Alaska Airlines?
This page of ba.com shows the Avios you earn from flying with British Airways partners.
Here are the Avios you earn as a percentage of the miles you fly:
|Economy lowest (Q, O, G, X)||25%|
|Economy low (K, M, L, V, S, N)||50%|
|Economy flexible (Y, B, H)||100%|
|Business (J, C, D, I)||125%|
Where does Alaska Airlines fly?
Despite its name, Alaska Airlines is based in Seattle. Whilst it flies more passengers to Alaska than any other US airline, it also serves over 100 other destinations in the US, Canada and Mexico.
The airline expanded substantially in 2016 when it acquired Virgin America, the US regional airline which operated primarily on the West Coast.
Alaska Airlines is particularly good for getting to Hawaii with more than 175 flights a week in normal times. It flies from nine West Coast cities (Anchorage, Los Angeles, Oakland, Portland, Sacramento, San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose, and Seattle) to four Hawaiian Islands (Big Island, Kauai, Maui and Oahu).
The entry of Alaska Airlines into oneworld isn’t a game changer for Avios collectors, especially as redemptions had always been possible via telephone before this.
It is now far easier to search and book redemption flights, however, and the ability to use your British Airways status benefits when flying with Alaska is an added bonus.