Alaska Airlines has made huge improvements to their Mileage Plan program this year on the award redemption front. At the beginning of the year Emirates was added as a Mileage Plan redemption partner. Then earlier this year Mileage Plan added one-way awards, starting with American and then British Airways.
Then in June they added several more partners on which you could redeem Mileage Plan miles for on one-way redemptions. Quite possibly the biggest news regarding the ability to redeem miles for one-way awards was that Alaska was actually allowing stopovers on one-way awards, which is very rare. That means if you book a roundtrip as two one-ways you could really have two stopovers on an award ticket.
Anyway, the only three partners remaining on which you couldn’t redeem miles through alaskaair.com were Cathay Pacific, Korean Air, and LAN, and as of yesterday Korean Air awards are now bookable online.
As a reminder, here’s Alaska’s award chart for Mileage Plan redemptions on Korean Air, along with the corresponding blackout dates:
This isn’t just exciting news for those looking to redeem Alaska Mileage Plan miles, but also for those trying to redeem Delta SkyMiles. While Delta’s website began displaying Korean Air award space late last year, delta.com is quite possibly the least user friendly website for searching award space on the internet. The Korean Air coach and business class award space that Alaska and Delta have access to should generally be the same, so ultimately you’ll be better off searching for Korean Air award space on alaskaair.com.
Kudos to Alaska for all the user friendly changes they’ve made to the Mileage Plan program this year (and here’s to hoping it doesn’t result in a devaluation next year).
(Tip of the hat to Mike)