Emirates and Alaska Airlines are launching a new frequent-flyer program partnership that will offer travelers the opportunity to accrue Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan miles when they fly to any of Emirates’ 118 destinations worldwide, including points across Africa, India and the Middle East.
Members of Emirates’ Skywards frequent-flyer program can accrue miles across the Alaska Airlines network in the United States (including Alaska and Hawaii), Canada and Mexico.
“As part of our commitment to Seattle, we are launching our service by partnering with Seattle’s hometown airline to offer customers the convenience of a frequent-flier partnership as well as one-stop check-in and through checked baggage,” said Nigel Page, Emirates’ senior vice president of commercial operations for the Americas.
Emirates, the world’s largest operator of Boeing 777 aircraft, will operate a daily non-stop flight from Seattle-Tacoma International Airport to Dubai with Boeing 777-300ERs from March 1. Seattle will join the airline’s existing U.S. gateways in New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Houston and Dallas/Fort Worth (to which Emirates is due to begin service on February 2).
Under the new partnership, travelers connecting between any point on Alaska Airlines’ and Emirates’ networks will be able to check in for their flights at either carrier’s counter, receive their boarding passes and check their bags to their final destination.
“Alaska Airlines is delighted to welcome Emirates as our newest Mileage Plan partner,” said Caroline Boren, Alaska’s managing director, loyalty marketing and customer advocacy. “Our customers will be able to earn and redeem miles on Emirates – a carrier admired for its service and quality and with a route network that gives our members even more access to global destinations.”
Miles flown on Emirates will count toward qualification for Alaska’s MVP elite-level program.
To mark the new partnership, both airlines are offering double miles on each others’ flights from March 1 through May 31, 2012. To earn double miles, members must register their Skywards number at www.skywards.com or Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan number at www.alaskaair.com prior to their first qualifying flight.
Alaska Airlines also announced it will increase its schedule this summer from Portland International Airport in Oregon, with new flights operated by sister regional carrier Horizon Air and regional-franchise partner SkyWest Airlines.
Through the regional carriers, Alaska Airlines is launching new seasonal service from Portland to Santa Barbara in California and will resume its summer flights to Bellingham in Washington.
Alaska Airlines will also begin seasonal flying on its network between Portland and Bozeman, Montana, and is resuming seasonal service from Portland International Airport to the Montana cities of Missoula and Billings.
All of the services will begin on June 4 or June 5 and will operate through August 25, 2012.
Horizon Air will operate the Portland flights to Bellingham, Bozeman, Billings and Missoula with 76-seat Bombardier Q400 turboprops. SkyWest Airlines will operate the Portland-Santa Barbara flights for Alaska Airlines using 70-seat Bombardier CRJ700 regional jets.