Two noteworthy aspects of Alaska's Mileage Plan include its generous cancellation policy and the ability to earn status with the Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan without ever stepping foot on an Alaska Airlines plane!
Alaska Airlines allows you to credit miles from travel with Delta, American Airlines, British Airways, and other partners to its Mileage Plan. By having Mileage Plan elite status you’ll also get some reciprocal benefits on Delta and American Airlines as well. This is a great way to earn an elite status if you don’t fly on any single airline enough to hit the elite status requirements. Depending on the partner airline the Mileage Plan elite status you have will get you upgrades, priority boarding, and free checked baggage.
This means that you can earn elite status on Alaska Airlines without even flying on Alaska Airlines planes and some of these elite status benefits will cross over to some of Alaska’s partner airlines.
One noteworthy benefit of Mileage Plan is their generous cancellation policy. Even if you don’t have elite status, you won’t pay a fee to cancel or change a ticket more than 60 days prior to departure. If you have MVPGold or MVP Gold 75K elite status you can cancel or change a ticket within the 60 days prior to departure date and not pay fees. Compared to other domestic carriers this is one of the most lenient and customer friendly cancellation rules (many airlines charge ~$150 per change).
The Ultimate Guide to Alaska Airlines Miles Series Index
Part 2 | Earning Alaska Airlines Miles
Part 4 | Alaska Airlines Award Costs & Fees
Part 5 | Mileage Plan Elite Status
Part 9 | Best Ways to Get To Europe
Part 10 | North America Alaska Airlines Awards (Including Canada, Hawaii, and Mexico)
Part 11 | Best Ways to Get to The Caribbean, Central & South America
Part 12 | Best Ways to Get to Australia, New Zealand, & South Pacific
Part 13 | Best Ways to Get to Japan, North Asia & South Asia
Part 14 | Best Ways to Get to Africa, Middle East, and India
Mileage Plan Membership Tiers
Alaska Airlines’ Mileage Plan has three elite status tiers which includes MVP, MVP Gold, and MVP Gold 75K. The easiest way to earn status on each tier is by flying on Alaska Airlines, but you can also earn through travel from Delta Airlines, American Airlines, and a handful of international airlines.
You can earn Mileage Plan elite membership by:
- Fly 20,000 miles on Alaska Airlines.
- Fly 25,000 miles on a combination of Alaska Airline and Elite Qualifying partner airlines.
- Flying 30 segments.
- Fly 40,000 miles on Alaska Airlines.
- Fly 50,000 miles on a combination of Alaska Airline and Elite Qualifying partner airlines.
- Flying 60 segments.
MVP Gold 75K
- Fly 75,000 miles on Alaska Airlines.
- Fly 90,000 miles on a combination of Alaska Airline and Elite Qualifying partner airlines.
- Flying 90 segments.
Learn more about the qualification requirements and benefits of each elite tier.
Elite Bonus Miles
MVP members earn a 50% miles bonus when flying on Alaska Airlines or its elite qualifying partners. Both MVP Gold and MVP Gold 75K members earn a 100% miles bonus on Alaska Airlines and its Elite qualifying partnersincluding American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Korean Air/KLM, Emirates, LAN, Fiji Airways, Qantas, and Aeromexico.
None of the miles earned from Elite Bonus Miles apply towards future Elite Status qualification.
There are a handful of opportunities to get upgrades as a Mileage Plan elite status member. On top of the normal upgrades, MVP Gold and MVP Gold 75K members get companion upgrades and 4 guest upgrades per year that can be used on their own fare or a companion’s.
All upgrades are only available for paid fares and break down like this:
All members of Mileage Plan with status will get upgrades on Delta for travel in the U.S. (excluding Hawaii), Canada, Mexico, and most Caribbean destinations. Since these are day of departure upgrades, they can be hard to come by on the Delta’s busier routes within the US.
Hack My Trip has also mentioned that there is an upgrade loophole when you book an award ticket using British Airways Avios Points. Basically, award tickets booked with Avios remain eligible for upgrades if you have elite status with Mileage Plan.
Other Elite Benefits
All elite status levels get 2 free checked bags, but only MVP Gold and MVP Gold 75K members will get a second checked bag free for a companion.
Alaska Airlines has some of the most generous change and cancellation rules allowing you to change or cancel a ticket for free if the departure date is more than 60 days out. If you have MVP Gold and MVP Gold 75K you won’t pay a fee for any changes even within the 60 day window prior to the travel date.
Another unique perk is when you hit MVP Gold 75K status is you get 50,000 bonus miles and can also nominate a friend or family member to MVP status. On top of that, you’ll also receive four Board Room passes annually as MVP Gold 75K member.
Reciprocal Elite Benefits
By having Mileage Plan elite status you'll also get some reciprocal benefits on Delta and American Airlines. The most generous benefits cross over to Delta and include upgrades on flights with the continental US, priority boarding, and up to 2 free checked bags.
Mileage Plan status reciprocal benefits are not quite as valuable on American Airlines, but you'll still get upgrades to preferred or main cabin extra seating, priority boarding and 2 free checked bags.
Exclusive Benefits for Alaska Residents
Alaska Airlines gives special benefits to Mileage Plan members that are Alaska state residents. Club 49 gives 2 free checked bags, a 30% discounts on Refundable Coach fares to, from and within Alaska and other exclusive sale fares.
If you're an Alaska state resident all you need to do is have a Mileage Plan account and you'll be eligible for these benefits by registering here.
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