Alaska Mileage Plan Offering Minimum Of 10K Miles Per Partner Trip

Filed Under: Alaska
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I’m a huge fan of the Alaska Mileage Plan program. Even though the airline doesn’t belong to any of the global alliances, they have a variety of airline partners across the three alliances, and also have several independent airline partners.

Alaska Mileage Plan is one of the most generous programs when it comes to how many miles they’ll issue you for partner flights, and they’ve just made that even more generous for most of 2020.

Earn at least 10K Alaska miles per partner trip

Between March 1 and December 31, 2020, Alaska Mileage Plan will offer a minimum of 10,000 miles per roundtrip on eligible partners between North American and non-North American destinations.

There are some things to be aware of:

  • This is valid for flights on Aer Lingus, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Condor, EL AL, Emirates, Fiji Airways, Finnair, Hainan Airlines, Icelandair, Japan Airlines, Korean Air, LATAM, Qantas, and Singapore Airlines
  • In reality you’ll earn a minimum of 5,000 miles on a one-way, should you not be flying roundtrip
  • North America is defined as the United States, Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean
  • Bonus miles offered through this promotion are redeemable award miles, so don’t count towards elite status
  • The promotion is based on when you travel, and even tickets booked before the start of the promotion are eligible
  • Allow four to six weeks for miles to be credited to your Mileage Plan account
  • There’s no registration required, though you can see the promotion mentioned on this page

Obviously this promotion won’t benefit everyone, but this will be especially useful for those booking discounted fares. For example, if you’re flying roundtrip from Boston to London on British Airways in the cheapest fare class you’d ordinarily earn ~1,633 miles (the trip covers a distance of 6,530 miles, and the cheapest fares earn mileage for 25% of the distance flown).

If you’re in that position you’d earn an additional ~8,367 miles, which is the equivalent of over a 500% bonus. Very nice!

Are elite members at a disadvantage?

One interesting wrinkle here seems to be that elite members may be at a disadvantage. Best I can tell they’re promising a minimum of 10,000 total award miles roundtrip, so it would appear that this would factor in elite bonuses. In other words, non-elite members have the most to gain here.

What does Alaska gain with this promotion?

Reimbursement between airlines for having miles issued is complicated, so I do wonder how exactly the economics of this work. Generally airlines have some sort of an agreed upon rate for reimbursing one another for crediting miles.

My guess would be that in this case Alaska is picking up most (or maybe even all) of the cost associated with the promotion. That’s because the promotion is with virtually all partner airlines.

Presumably they’re doing this to get people crediting miles to Alaska Mileage, so think of it as a marketing expense on Alaska’s end.

Other ways to earn Alaska miles

If you’re looking to earn Alaska miles aside from this promotion, Alaska offers two credit cards that can help you rack up points quickly:

Both offer welcome bonuses after completing a moderate minimum spend, along with Alaska’s famous Companion Fare, which lets you “buy one, get one for cheap” for economy flights on Alaska. This is one of the easiest companion tickets to use, and the main reason I keep the cards year after year.

Bottom line

I love the creativity of this promotion. While other loyalty programs increasingly move towards a revenue based model where only those on high fares are being rewarded, it’s nice to see a program offering a promotion that others can benefit from as well.

If you have any discounted long haul tickets coming up that wouldn’t earn a lot of miles with other programs, be sure to consider Alaska Mileage Plan.

Do you plan on taking advantage of this Alaska Mileage Plan promotion?

(Tip of the hat to Cariverga)

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Comments
  1. wait isn’t that unfair to the elites who fly the most? A MVPG will receive double the miles originally, so the bonus for the elite would be way less than a normal flier? Or is it their intention of getting more economy flyers who are new in the program? I am quite confused to the goal of this promotion.

  2. I am a little confused about how this will work. Do I just need to put my AS FF number in the reservation? I have a one way CMB-IAD on CX coming up next month (hopefully).

  3. This sounds like they are trying to appease their partners. Given that they have been rather generous on the burning side, I guess their partners are a bit annoyed. In fact, I feel like there is a genre of frequent flyer discussion in which members of EK bash members of AS (and I think EK feel the same way, given the shabby treatment they give AS members for J award booking). By making earning more attractive, AS is trying to encourage their members to fly rev more on partners.

  4. Does this will work for one way from HKG-JFK? Because it’s from outside North America TO North America.

    I’m planning that route with Cathay.

    Thanks

  5. How is this bonus calculated? Do premium class flyers miss out? Let’s say you’re flying roundtrip from US to SE Asia (say 18,000 miles) on JAL or SQ premium economy. Do you get any bonus w/ this promotion?

  6. Does all fares qualify? For example basic economy flights on British Airways?

    Kudos to Alaska Airlines for still being generous compared to the Big 3.

  7. Hey Lucky, first off, I want to thank you for publishing OMAAT, I’m a fellow JHS alumn and I read about it in our alumni newsletter. Anyways, do you think these points count towards EQM? because that would be an easy way to get alaska status with 2.5 flights out of MIA to central america on AA.

  8. My take is that the minimum miles earned (RDM) ia 5,000 per flight on eligible flights. I do not agree that elite bonuses would also be included in this calculation. Historically, elite bonuses have always been added AFTER all promotional bonuses based on fare class.

  9. Now that you live in Miami I have a hard time picturing you using your companion fare (for coach alone no less) 1x per year… care to share your tricks?

  10. @davistev From the fine print from the page Lucky linked:

    “*Earn a minimum of 5,000 total miles each way on Aer Lingus, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Condor, EL AL Israel Airlines, Emirates, Fiji Airways, Finnair, Hainan Airlines, Icelandair, Japan Airlines, Korean Air, LATAM Airlines, Qantas and Singapore Airlines flights between North America and a non-North America destination between March 1 and December 31, 2020. North America is defined as the United States, Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean. Any bonus miles added to reach the 5,000 mile minimum do not count toward elite status qualification. Please allow four to six weeks for miles to be credited to your Mileage Plan account.”

    Key part is “Any bonus miles added to reach the 5,000 mile minimum.” That reads to me like if you would’ve earned below 5k you earn 5k. If you would’ve earned more than 5k you earn whatever you would’ve earned. So, those who would’ve earned the least amount of miles benefit the most. It is possible (based on fare and length) that some elites won’t earn any additional miles from this.

  11. But a cheap-ass BE fare, pay a little bit for a better seat upgrade. As long as your under what the $ would have been for a Y fare, you win 🙂

  12. So…in theory you could fly something like Miami to Cali on AA and grab 10k miles with AS?
    If they’re PQM then that’s a great deal!

  13. Booked on Icelandair in P class. P class isn’t eligible for regular Alaska miles earning, so I’m assuming isn’t eligible for this promotion either?

  14. Hmm… I do have an open jaw trip coming up from LAX to LHR, then CDG to LAX on British Airways in Premium Economy. I booked directly with BA though – so will my trip be eligible? I already have my AS number on the reservation.

  15. So is this a benefit only if you book in economy? I’m flying LHR-IAD on BA in business later this year. Wouldn’t I already be earning 10k-ish anyway?

  16. This will give AS data about customers who fly internationally at least a bit or maybe even a lot but may not credit flights to AS. That would provide AS some marketing clout with the partner airlines as it shows that AS can drive business toward its global partners. It also provides AS with information about its programs relatively wealthier customers, which can in turn be used for additional marketing purposes by even partners. It also may help AS get more people to more frequently use AS’s program than other airline programs.

    I almost never have credited my international flights to my AS account, but this promo may get me to do just that.

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