Alaska Airlines Launches Double Miles Promotion

Filed Under: Alaska, Alaska Mileage Plan

Nowadays it’s quite rare to see frequent flyer programs actually offer promotions that incentivize flying. A vast majority of promotions nowadays seem to be for non-flying activities.

Personally I’d pose the question if someone should be running a loyalty program if they don’t think they’re capable of offering promotions that move the needle for members. Or at a minimum, should they be running a program if they don’t think it’s worth differentiating a loyalty program from competitors?

That’s why I’m really excited about the promotion that Alaska just launched. I love Alaska Mileage Plan to begin with, since they’re the only major US frequent flyer program to still offer at least one airline mile per mile flown on Alaska (so they don’t have a revenue based program).

Alaska Mileage Plan is offering double miles on select transcontinental routes between April 1 and December 31, 2019. Nine months is a long time to run a promotion, so kudos to Alaska for that.

Registration is required prior to your first eligible flight, and there’s no limit to how many bonus miles you can earn. Double miles will be awarded within 4-6 weeks of completion of eligible travel. The double miles are based on the base miles you earn, and the bonus miles don’t count towards elite status.

Now let’s take a look at the nonstop city pairs that qualify for the promotion.

West Coast departures between:

  • Los Angeles (LAX) and Baltimore (BWI), Boston (BOS), Fort Lauderdale (FLL), New York (JFK), Newark (EWR), Philadelphia (PHL), Washington-Dulles (IAD), or Washington-Reagan (DCA)
  • San Diego (SAN) and Baltimore (BWI), Boston (BOS), Newark (EWR), or Orlando (MCO)
  • San Francisco (SFO) and Baltimore (BWI), Boston (BOS), Fort Lauderdale (FLL), New York (JFK), Newark (EWR), Orlando (MCO), Philadelphia (PHL), Raleigh (RDU), Washington-Dulles (IAD), or Washington-Reagan (DCA)
  • San Jose (SJC) and New York (JFK) or Newark (EWR)

East Coast departures between:

  • New York (JFK) and Los Angeles (LAX), San Francisco (SFO), or San Jose (SJC)
  • Newark (EWR) and Los Angeles (LAX), San Diego (SAN), San Francisco (SFO), or San Jose (SJC)
  • Baltimore (BWI) and Los Angeles (LAX), San Diego (SAN), or San Francisco (SFO)
  • Boston (BOS) and Los Angeles (LAX), San Diego (SAN), or San Francisco (SFO)
  • Fort Lauderdale (FLL) and Los Angeles (LAX) or San Francisco (SFO)
  • Orlando (MCO) and San Diego (SAN) or San Francisco (SFO)
  • Philadelphia (PHL) and Los Angeles (LAX) or San Francisco (SFO)
  • Raleigh (RDU) and San Francisco (SFO)
  • Washington-Dulles (IAD) and Los Angeles (LAX) or San Francisco (SFO)
  • Washington-Reagan (DCA) and Los Angeles (LAX) or San Francisco (SFO)

This isn’t even the only promotion Alaska is offering. Through May 31, 2019, Alaska is also offering their “Coast To Elite” promotion, offering fast tracked status when taking certain transcontinental flights.

The airline really seems to be putting emphasis into their coast to coast routes.

Bottom line

This is an extremely generous promotion from Alaska Airlines. For example, MVP Gold 75K members earn a 125% bonus on travel, and also earn a further 50,000 bonus miles when they requalify. So an MVP Gold 75K member would be earning a minimum of 325% redeemable miles for travel on the above routes, not accounting for the 50,000 mile bonus at the end of the year.

To crunch some basic numbers, a roundtrip transcon flight is often around 5,000 miles, so an MVP Gold 75K member could be earning 16,250 miles, which I value at ~$300. That’s often the same price as a ticket.

VERY nice promotion, Alaska!

Looking for other ways to rack up Alaska miles?

Check out the best-ever bonus on the Alaska Airlines Visa® Business Credit Card, or the latest promotion for buying Alaska miles at a discount!

  1. As someone who flies BOS-PDX and BOS-SEA a fair bit, this incentivizes me to move business from B6 not at all 🙁

  2. Alaska appears to be abandoning their Pacific Northwest customer base in favour of California. Not sure this is a wise decision as the competition in California is fierce so the bottom line will suffer.

    WestJet has done the same thing in Canada by competing only in the Toronto market.

  3. There’s a reason it’s mostly targeted at California customers – theres lots of competition on all those routes, so Alaska figures it needs to do something to entice travelers onto their flights. From Seattle/ Portland, there’s not as much competition and Alaska gets what it wnats on those flights. No need to dilute revenue there.

  4. PDS is correct. AS is not competitive on price or hard product with B6, DL, UA, AA. So they badly need this promo to incentivize travelers to pick AS.

  5. I still think AS missed a huge opportunity to create a unique hard product when they incorporated VX metal. Their new first class is a yawn. How do they expect to compete with all the transcon flat beds? The captive PDX and SEA markets aren’t enough to carry their entire transcon business.

  6. Agree with @Ralf. Who cares about this promo……hard product is not competitive on these routes.

  7. David says:
    April 1, 2019 at 2:29 pm

    PDS is correct. AS is not competitive on price or hard product with B6, DL, UA, AA. So they badly need this promo to incentivize travelers to pick AS.

    AS is competitive on the economy class product and premium economy product. For First Class, it is competitive if you intend to sit upright and not lie down.

  8. does anyone know if you connect from Seattle will the double points count for the leg from California to the east coast

  9. I like be Seattle area. Was thinking of getting Alaska credit/ milage card. Not know. You seem to leave out people right at your home base. Not good Alaska.

  10. One the nose for PDS

    I’ve been considering switching transcontinental business to another carrier and living without 75k (just MVP gold) to be more comfortable on those routes. Now with the added bonus I’ll probably suck it up and take AS Boeing equipment when I have to. If you can get the old airbus in F, I don’t mind that ride at all.

  11. I had a look at the T&Cs, and couldn’t see the answer to this question.

    If I’m flying F (usually earnings 175%), would I earn 350% (175% x 2) or 275% (100% x 2 + 75%) under this promo?

  12. I flew their route from SFO to JFK in FC and it was horrible plus they refused to honor their Priority Club admittance at their JFK club. I won’t forget Alaska. No thanks!

  13. I’m not sure double miles would be worth the five extra hours it takes to connect in SAN or SFO for this girl.

  14. This is awesome! I already took advantage of the previous “Coast to Elite” promotion and became a MVP after two round-trip flights to New York City and Philadelphia from San Francisco. I have two more trips planned, SFO-IAD and SFO-EWR, that are going to give me MVP Gold status. Now with this new promotion, I am going to earn double miles on those two trips! Alaska is treating us Californians well!

  15. I live in Portland and use miles to fly to LA, so this promotion is wonderful for me. I love ALASKA.

  16. Seattle’s HOME TOWN AIRLINE, just screwed their home town.
    I never bought off on that slogan anyway.
    The little airline that thinks they invented First Class.

  17. @shari Rey. The fine print says transcontinental from SFO and LAX. Don’t love AS too much from PDX

    AS First is BA Premium Economy or Qantas crap business.

    Nothing to justify the fares.

  18. It seems this takes effect for flights purchased before registering, so long as the flight is taken after registration.

    I am flying one of these routes next week so will definitely take advantage of this!

  19. Wonderful news for a California parent of a college kid in Maryland. Every incentive helps these days. Alaska is our preferred Airline specifically for the mile perks.

  20. It’s a shame both Alaska and JetBlue completely bypass the middle of the country.

    Kansas City is getting a new terminal, and they’ve been chasing a new hometown airline for years. Too bad neither of these superstars wants a hub in what their passengers mock as “flyover country.” They’d clean up in this very peaceful market.

  21. So I flew AS 326 on 13th October from SFO – JFK, and during the flight they handed out application forms for the Alaska Visa Signature credit card, saying that for that flight only you would receive double the miles bonus – and the announcement made very clear that this meant 84,000 bonus miles (several times) after $2,000 in 90 days. There was an employee reference on the application form, which I’ve submitted. I feel like it must be too good to be true, but they did make it very clear what that meant on the announcement so I guess we’ll see. If it works out, it’ll be quite the bonus to land! Anyone heard of anything similar to this on other Alaska flights?

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