It’s always great to give airlines in Canada a little competition to keep them on their toes. But we need to know who the competitors are so that we can take advantage of lower flight tickets; thus, forcing airlines in Canada to up their game. Alaska Airlines is one of those competitors. This airlines flies within North America only (Canada, Mexico and United States). In Canada, they only offer service to Calgary/Banff, Edmonton, Kelowna, Vancouver, Victoria and Whistler. See the full list of destinations.
The reason I am writing about Alaska Airlines is because they have a Canadian based credit card, the MBNA Alaska Airlines to help you earn points faster. Therefore, Alaska Airlines does want to make some inroads into Canada and I welcome the competition.
Alaska Airline travelers can collect Mileage Plan points, which you can also earn flying with Horizon Air. Alaska Airlines does not belong to any alliances, but they are partners with: Oneworld member airlines (American Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, LAN, and Qantas); SkyTeam member airlines (Aeromexico, Air France, Delta Air Lines, KLM and Korean Air); as well as Air Pacific, Emirates, Era Alaska, Mokulele Airlines, and PenAir. There are definitely lots of options to consider, so Mileage Plan points can be very valuable if leveraged carefully.
Having the credit card is a great way to keep your Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan account active because you need to keep your account active once every 2 years. Furthermore, you need to earn some points within the first 9 months of opening an account. So only open an account when you know that you will be earning some points in the near future. Though there are many other ways to keep your account active anyway, without the credit card.
If you frequently fly within North America and you reside in one of the Canadian hubs that offer flights from Alaska Airlines, then I would strongly consider this airlines as an alternative. At the very least you can compare prices to get the best deal. The best way for an airline to improve their products is to go with their competitors until they get their act together and at least get up to par with its competitors.