Award Redemption Increases Between Select Regions in Business Class by Alaska Airlines
In response to the upcoming changes pertaining to the Flying Blue frequent flier loyalty program of Air France and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines — which were announced recently and were supposedly set to be effective as of “early” June 2013 — Alaska Airlines recently announced that the redemption of Mileage Plan frequent flier loyalty program miles will increase by up to 25 percent for an award seat in the business class cabin on routes between North America and Europe; North America and Africa; and within Europe to better synchronize with the award redemption structure of the Flying Blue frequent flier loyalty program.
The original date for these changes was originally set for June 11, 2013 — but the changes will most likely become effective at a later date, according to FlyerTalk member missydarlin, who is employed by Alaska Airlines.
The redemption of Mileage Plan frequent flier loyalty program miles for an award seat in the economy class cabin will remain unchanged.
The following chart shows the changes for redeeming Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan frequent flier loyalty program miles for round-trip award travel from Europe in business class:
Between North America and Europe
Between North America and Africa
5,000 or 11.11%
25,000 or 25.00%
20,000 or 16.67%
FlyerTalk member CDKing prophesied: “I sure hope its just an AF/KLM thing and not coming to other carriers.”
I would not bet on that. Look for this change to eventually affect the award redemption charts of the frequent flier loyalty programs of airlines which are members of the SkyTeam alliance.
In completely unrelated news, Alaska Airlines has announced that Icelandair will no longer be a partner of the Mileage Plan frequent flier loyalty program effective as of June 1, 2013. Tickets purchased on or before May 31, 2013 will continue to earn miles for travel through February 28, 2014. Existing award travel and award travel booked by May 31, 2013 will be honored for travel through February 28, 2014. Award travel on Icelandair cannot be booked or changed after May 31, 2013. This news comes after the severance of the partnership with Kenmore Air, which ended effective as of April 1, 2013.
My advice is if you are a member of the Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan frequent flier loyalty program and are already planning to redeem your miles for an award trip in the business class cabin of the routes shown in the chart above, book your award trip as soon as possible before the changes take effect — but I personally would not hastily redeem the miles solely because of the increase.