This is an unpopular opinion, but I don’t care that much about Alaska Airlines or its Mileage Plan program. There, I said it. Hate me if you want.
That’s why I didn’t pay much attention when it was announced in July that Alaska would be joining the oneworld alliance. Sure, there are plenty of reasons to pay attention to airline alliances as booking an award through a partner airline often unlocks some of the best award redemptions.
I wasn’t sure how much this would improve Alaska’s Mileage Plan program as it already had several partners through which you could get a great value for Alaska miles. Joining oneworld didn’t do much for me since that alliance is primarily focused on trans-Pacific traffic and most of our international flights are across the Atlantic. The major oneworld partner for those flights is British Airways and they charge outlandish “fuel surcharges” on award tickets while offering a substandard product.
It doesn’t matter that this change probably won’t make Alaska miles any more valuable for me. I had difficulty using them before and changing to oneworld won’t make things any easier. I already have a bunch of American Advantage and British Airways Avios that I’m looking to burn and having yet another airline miles from the same alliance isn’t helping me any.
I know that plenty of people are interested in this so I feel obligated to let you know that the date that Alaska is joining oneworld has been set to be March 31, 2021.
Many details about the partnership still are unknown. Will Alaska still offer a different award chart for each of its partners? Will Alaska keep its arrangements with non-oneworld airlines? What oneworld status will be given to Alaska MVP, MVP Gold or MVP Gold 75K members?
I’m sure these details will be hammered out over the next few months and travelers will either be pleased or upset at the decisions made.
I am happy that I don’t have a horse in this race. I’ll follow what happens but I doubt it will affect me at all. For those of you who are hanging on every moment until details are announced.
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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary