Alaska And Delta Drop Codeshares


DELTA over the weekend of 08MAR14 has revised planned codeshare operation with Alaska Airlines. Based on the latest routine schedule update, DELTA has removed its “DL” code on following Alaska Airlines’ operating routes.

eff 05JUN14
Seattle – Las Vegas
Seattle – Los Angeles
Seattle – San Diego
Seattle – San Francisco
Seattle – San Jose CA
Seattle – Vancouver

eff 01JUL14
Seattle – Anchorage
Seattle – Houston

eff 20DEC14
Seattle – Phoenix

The past year sure has been an interesting one for Alaska and Delta in Seattle. For those of you not familiar with the “battle in Seattle” that has been going on for Alaska and Delta…

It got serious in 2012 when Delta announced huge international expansion out of Seattle, which Alaska was justifiably excited about, since they were being tapped to provide the feed for that international service.

But it seems Delta had a bit of an epiphany, and said “hmm, why should we be outsourcing all this domestic flying to Alaska, when we could do it on our own?” So they’ve announced huge domestic expansion, and at this point are serving almost all of the major routes that Alaska does as well.


To get back at Delta a little bit, Alaska announced additional expansion in Salt Lake City, with additional nonstop service from Salt Lake City to four destinations, including Portland, Los Angeles, San Diego and San Jose. Obviously they’re a much smaller airline so can’t “retaliate” nearly as much.

Meanwhile both airlines have been offering tons of promotions, and Delta is even offering Washington residents double redeemable and Medallion Qualifying Miles for flights out of Seattle for the remainder of the year.

This raises the question, when will their “partnership” stop? I mean, seriously, this would be no different than British Airways and Virgin Atlantic or Qantas and Virgin Australia partnering.

They’re undercutting one another and offering promotions to lure flyers from one another, all while still proudly boasting that they’re partners and offering miles for travel on the other airline. Don’t get me wrong, as a consumer I love this dirty competition, but I almost feel bad…

Admittedly they probably have a contract, but surely they can mutually terminate it, no?

Filed Under: Alaska, Delta
  1. Two things that are bizarre. First is that AS & DL became closer and had better reciprocal benefits than AS has with AA – e.g. upgrades for each other’s elites. Seemed like they wanted to make this the best partnership for the elites.

    Second is that given this level of competition, that they are still partners at all. I get that DL is more than happy to take AS/QX feed for international flights at SEA, but what’s in it for AS?

    The end seems inevitable.

  2. @ Carl — Well I guess what’s in it for them is being able to provide that feed. Some revenue is better than no revenue, I guess.

  3. Delta’s business model is bad for me and this community at large. I don’t care what they try to entice me with, I’m sticking with Alaska.

  4. This is fodder for:

    DL will buy AK to more effectively compete against the #1 (by size) airline, AA.

    AA will buy AK to more effectively compete against the growing giant (in SEA), DL.

    Either way a merger is now a must…you know, for the consumer.

  5. Why the drop of codeshare on SEA-IAH? Every other route I understand because DL is now flying it on their own metal.

    Something special about SEA-IAH? My guess is either Alaska oil traffic (although that probably flies UA) or the new KE ICN-IAH service is killing any previous Skyteam/AS routings via SEA.

  6. @ Sanjeev M — Something tells me we now know the next route Delta will announce out of Seattle. 😉

  7. @David – TOTALLY agreed!

    I could well understand the rational part of that business model, $$$$$-driven. They might have a large groups of economists build the model, evaluting risks and calculating the best target customer group to appeal to, which turn out to be the 2%.
    As a Econ major grad, however, I dont buy their sh*t. No matter how little my contribution is to their profits, my vote will go to AS on the their competing routes. DL doesn’t deserve my respect. (the nice thing is that they don’t care about mine either) Medallion status? burried in the litter bin already

  8. Yikes. I hope the partnership lasts for at least 6 more months so I can get 200% credit on one more bogo f mco-sea-pdx-ogg-oak-sea-mco! Oh well, I can always regain my MVP status instead!

  9. I don’t know why people keep saying that this MUST result in a merger between DL/AS or AA/AS… Alaska’s balance sheet on their 10-K looks pretty good and unless their next quarterly statement shows some sort of radical shift, I don’t see any sort of pressing need for them to change their status quo.

  10. DL will buy AK to more effectively compete against the #1 (by size) airline, AA.
    AA will buy AK to more effectively compete against the growing giant (in SEA), DL.

    I would be very much in favor of DL buying AirAsia (AK) if they left Alaska (AS) alone.


  11. @Delta Points

    you do realize you are the only one who wishes for this, right? your relentless defense of Delta is truly embarrassing…

    Duck Felta!

  12. Why are people even talking about DL buying AS? Literally 0% chance that would ever get through the DOJ, and I’m sure Delta knows that, so even if they wanted to, they won’t.

  13. Here’s the issue. I live in NYC and began crediting all of my American Airlines and Delta flights to Alaska. American doesn’t offer flights to many of my preferred donations or at my preferred times, so I plan on sticking with Delta flights for a lot of my routes.

    Alaska is great because you can achieve status by flying the two major NYC airlines (I consider United a New Jersey airline). However, with Alaska appearing to drop Delta soon, should I start flying exclusively Delta or American and trying to achieve status on one of those airlines?

  14. @ Anthony — How much flying do you do on each airline? Generally it can make sense to credit to each individual airline if you fly enough, for upgrades, lounge access, etc.

  15. I am not a huge flier – 30,000 or so domestic with occasional (once a year or every other year) paid international. I can fly either but have traditionally flown Delta. I was a Delta Silver last year and found the benefits a bit underwhelming, which is why I started to credit to Alaska. I think AA’s lowest level is a bit better, but at Gold, Delta starts to look more interesting….

  16. @ Anthony — In that case I would continue crediting to Alaska for as long as you can. Definitely the best program given your circumstances.

  17. Now whats AS next move on this start flying flights to places like ABQ and kill the code share with DL or do they keep the code share and increase the benefits of there relationship with AA or do they join an alliance say One World

  18. the inevitable is coming. Delta will purchase and subsume Alaska. no matter what nasty comments we have for Delta, its not going to stop them from doing what they want to do. this is an airline so consumed with pleasing their million plus milers that they pick them up in Porsches to shuttle them to their connections. in spite of owing billions…their cash on hand can pretty much purchase alaska and then some. this is the same airline that will subsume virgin atlantic. they are just trying to get alaska’s stocks at their preferred price point and then pounce. i love them and hate them at the same time.

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