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Alaska Airlines releases new charts for how many Mileage Plan points you’ll earn when flying on American.
They aren’t too good. This isn’t really that surprising. Alaska Air wouldn’t have been smart to essentially allow American Airlines to generate revenue off of flights and then allow passengers to earn their great currency at the current levels. It’s a currency war peeps! So…here’s a quick look.
Earning up to July 31
And now starting on August 1st
The discount fares have been decimated.
I’m going to do a more in depth analysis of the chart in a later post, but I thought if you’re trying to find fares now that will qualify at the 100% level post August maybe I could be of some service.
Here is a look at how to use the ITA Matrix to search for American Airlines flights from LAX-ORD
As you can see here I clicked on advanced routing codes and added in aa+. This is the ITA advanced routing code for flights that are codeshare with american airlines, or rather, flights that have American flight numbers. I also did the search from August 6th and specified a 1-7 night stay.
This search will yield these results:
Now if we search for American flights that earn 100% miles on Alaska we need to search for specific fare classes or buckets: H,K,L,W,Y
The way you go about doing this and specifying American code shares is shared below.
- specify aa+
- add in / f bc= ( then whichever fare code you want) if you want to search another use | to separate
Now the prices are staggeringly different. Ugh, this doesn’t bode well for earning tons of Alaska Miles and MVP Gold 75 next year.
These options aren’t really that much more expensive than the lowerst fares we saw above.
The big question remains as to whether these changes are going to affect Elite mileage accrual levels.
Alaska miles are intrinsically more valuable because of their redemption options, so earning the same quantity of Alaska as American would put you ahead in value earned.
I spoke to a rep on the phone and she seemed to think that it only relates to Redeemable and not Elite qualifying. That’s good news if true! It’s also unclear how Elite bonuses will be calculated
I spoke with the same rep and asked her how an MVP Gold or Gold 75 would earn miles. She didn’t seem to know and said that they were still sussing it out. I’ll call Mileage Plan tomorrow and ask someone else and see if there are any updates.
In the above scenario we can examine how someone who is Platinum and MVP Gold would earn miles on an AA flight in fare bucket G or V post doomsday… I mean August 1st.
- RDM =8*407 ( or there abouts) = 3256
- EQM = 3490 r/t
- EQD = $407
Alaska = let’s speculate the Elite is based on actual miles and Gold bonus is 100% of RDM.
- RDM = 3490 ( r/t mileage) *0.75 = 2617.5 + MVP bonus of 2617.5 = 5235
- Elite = 3490
There is a clear advantage if the Elite bonus is based off of your earning. You’d be earning nearly 2000 more Alaska miles and Alaska miles are more valuable. It’s worth now searching for fare buckets more aggressively and then making an assessment as to whether paying more money to earn more miles is worth it.
Use ITA Matrix to search for fare classes that earn you more miles. Make an informed choice on your fare. Don’t forget to use BookWithMatrix for an easy booking.
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