Delta and Alaska were once close partners. In fact, at one point it was expected that their partnership could grow to exclude American (which also partners with Alaska).
Instead Delta has built up a hub operation in Seattle — first for transpacific flights, and then feeding those flights with its own domestic route network rather than transferring passengers on its partner Alaska.
The two airlines have been competing brutally. A couple of years ago there much much speculation that Delta was trying to force Alaska into a merger, or to beat down their financial performance to the point that a merger was less expensive. I wrote instead that I thought they were just playing hardball, which they do even with partners (Cf. Korean Air). Alaska has competed well.
- They’ve grown their schedule, including into cities traditionally served by Delta in order to compete rather than cooperate. And they’ve done this while generating some of the best financial returns in the industry and operating an ‘on-time machine’ that ” target=_blank>rivals and outperforms Delta’s.
- They’ve leveraged their mileage program and checked bag fee pain points. (They see their frequent flyer program as an advantage of Delta.)
- The back and forth between the carriers even spawned this bad joke.
The airline’s CEO was ‘shocked’ when their Delta partnership unraveled. And Alaska now describes Delta as ‘technically still a partner at this point’.
This hard core competition from Delta in Seattle may be one reason why Alaska needed to buy a San Francisco hub.
All of this has been great for consumers, we’ve seen an intense competition in Seattle for the past several years that we’ve only recently begun to see in airfares this year. For instance, Seattle-area residents got a 100,000 mile signup bonus for Delta’s co-brand credit card three years ago.
Delta’s got another crazy deal for Washington State residents.
New SkyMiles members who join get 5000 miles after first Delta trip by November 30.
They’ll also earn double miles on all Delta qualifying flights.
And two qualifying roundtrips during the promotion period earns Gold Medallion status through January 31.
Qualifying flights are roundtrips originating in Seattle, and Basic Economy fares are excluded.
Terms and conditions:
Eligibility: Only residents in the state of Washington who are not currently SkyMiles members and sign up for the SkyMiles program via this promotion are eligible for this offer. This offer is non-transferable. To participate in this offer, eligible customers must travel with Delta Air Lines between June 30, 2016 and November 30, 2016. You must first enroll online for participation in the offer via the promotional enrollment page by November 30, 2016 (ending 11:59:59 PM, U.S. PST on 11/30/2016) and then fly by November 30, 2016. Flights flown prior to enrollment do not qualify for this promotion.
Qualifying Flight Activity: SkyMiles enrollment must take place through the promotional enrollment page to qualify for offer. Qualifying round trips may be purchased at any time, but must commence between June 27, 2016 and November 30, 2016. Only round trips departing from and returning to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport are eligible for the promotion. Only round-trip Delta and Delta Connection® operated flights flown after promotional enrollment will qualify for this offer. Tickets with E Fare Class are excluded from this offer. Flights eligible for bonus miles and or Medallion status must conclude by November 30, 2016. Only those round-trip flights purchased with a published fare that earns SkyMiles mileage accrual are eligible. Award, Miles + Cash, free, barter, pass travel and certain tickets, including but not limited to bulk, consolidator, cruise, vacation packages, inclusive tour and other tickets where the fare is not disclosed, are not eligible for this promotion. 5,000
Bonus Miles Offer: Upon completion of the first qualifying round trip out of Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, 5,000 bonus miles will be deposited into the respective SkyMiles account. Round-trip activity must conclude on or before November 30, 2016.
Double Miles Bonus Offer: Mileage accrual is doubled for all qualifying round trip flights. Double miles are awarded from the respective Medallion status multiplier but not on any bonus miles. Round trip activity must conclude on or before November 30, 2016.
Medallion® Status Offer: If you meet the criteria to participate, you will receive: complimentary Gold Medallion status through January 31, 2017 upon completing 2 Qualifying roundtrip flights. The complimentary Medallion status is effective the day following your completion of required flight activity. Complimentary status is not combinable with existing Medallion status and will not extend any current or future Medallion status earned. Your complimentary Medallion status will return to the applicable Medallion status you qualified for during the Medallion year after your complimentary status ends. During the complimentary period, you will not have access to the following
(HT: No Mas Coach)