Unlock Up To 50% Off Partner Awards: New Alaska Airlines Feature Discounts Global Beach Destinations

When Alaska Airlines announced their new distance-based award charts back in November, they teased that there would be regular discounts not just on Alaska Airlines travel but also on airline partner travel as well.

Now that we’re a couple of weeks into the roll out of these new charts, the Mileage Plan program has its first award sale promising “savings of up to 50% on award redemptions to select international destinations with us and our global partners.”

  • Redeem in April
  • Travel September through November
  • Limited to economy and premium economy (and business class without lie flat seats is considered premium economy)
Discounted Regular Price
Destination Coach Coach % Off
Papeete (Tahiti) 20000 30000 33%
Nadi, Fiji 20000 37500 47%
Nassau, Bahamas 15000 17500 14%
Zanzibar, Tanzania 30000 42500 29%
Male, Maldives 30000 42500 29%
Bali, Indonesia 30000 42500 29%


Evening cocktail at Park Hyatt Maldives

Fiji and the Bahamas offer economy redemption discounts only, since the relevant means of getting there won’t involve a premium economy product.

Discounted pricing for premium economy is as follows:

  • Tahiti: 30,000
  • Zanzibar: 40,000
  • Maldives: 40,000
  • Bali: 40,000


Main pool at Conrad Bora Bora

Discounts are limited to travel to and from the U.S. only. We can expect to see new promotional offers quarterly, and they’ll continue to ‘theme’ the offers. This one is ‘exotic sunny beach escapes.’

Now, something struck me about the pricing here. They were promoting coach offers, which had a maximum discount of 47% off of standard redemption cost (Fiji), but were actually trumpeting up to 50% savings, so I asked for a bit of an explanation. In fact, I was told, that “some discounts are higher (even more than 50%) given that we are also putting some enhanced inventory on sale to ensure adequate availability.” So awards you might pay substantially more for to get additional availability may be offered at the promotional pricing.

Unfortunately from my perspective this focuses only on coach and premium economy. And that appears to be what they’re sticking with for future offers, too. Alaska explains it as follows,

The plan is to focus on coach & premium economy, mostly because there is a lot more inventory available in these classes and we want to make these offers broad so we don’t run out of award inventory and limit frustration if customers can’t book desired flights.

I certainly get the concern, but the possibility of getting truly outsized value is something that I think members will be excited about as well.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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Comments

  1. It’s so nice to have 4500k short haul redemptions again (I miss those from back in the old BA days). I booked PHL TO Portland Maine (PWM) on AA for 4500k miles (with great flight times too). These tickets can be very expensive, so I was getting 5.5 cents/mile. I normally wouldn’t use AS Miles like that but with the new BILT transfer it makes it much easier.

  2. @ Gary — Why won’t any bloggers speak the truth about Alaska’s changes? They are a MASSIVE devaluation. This sale to fly in torture class is a joke.

  3. This is a joke.

    AS has gutted their rewards program. I am noticing today, if you have a domestic connecting flight to your international itinerary, AS now adds the miles it would charge for that domestic itinerary.

    So if the US-Europe itinerary was 55K and domestic positioning J was 30K, previously it would cost only 55K. Now it costs 85K. So its not just devaluing miles. Its complete change in how they charge you for any itinerary and it is not to your advantage.

  4. A complete waste of time and miles. No sane person will travel halfway around the world in torture class, if they are into the points and miles game.

  5. Fiji’s extra legroom coach seats in the A350 are worth the cash payment.

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