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Rundown of Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan for Canadians (updated August 18, 2019)

It has been over a year since I last posted about Alaska Airlines’ Mileage Plan frequent flyer program. A few changes warrants an update.

Expiry Policy

Alaska Mileage Plan miles do not expire as long as you earn or redeem at least one mile every 24 months. If miles are deleted, you have up to 1 year to reinstate them for a fee by calling customer care.

However, as a Canadian, we do have options to keep our accounts active.

Earning Miles

Codeshare Partners

Aside from flying directly with Alaska Airlines, you can also earn miles with its codeshare partners. Even if an airline is not a member of a major airline alliance, they can still have individual partnerships with specific airlines:

  • Aer Lingus
  • American Airlines
  • British Airways
  • Cathay Pacific
  • Condor
  • EL AL Israel Airlines
  • Emirates
  • Fiji Airways
  • Finnair
  • Hainan Airlines
  • Icelandair
  • Japan Airlines
  • Korean Air
  • LATAM Airlines
  • PenAir
  • Qantas
  • Ravn Alaska
  • Singapore Airlines

Car Partners

When it comes to renting a car, you can bank your rewards towards Mileage Plan rather than earning car rental points. It becomes even more lucrative when there are bonus miles opportunities, so watch for them.

Below is a list of car rental companies Alaska Airlines partners with and the earning potential:

  • Alaska Airlines Car Rental – earn 250 miles per rental
  • Alamo – earn 50 miles per day on qualifying rentals
  • Avis – earn 50 miles per rental day on rentals 1 – 4 days or 500 miles per rental on rentals of 5 days or more
  • Budget – earn 50 miles per rental day on rentals 1 – 4 days or 500 miles per rental on rentals of 5 days or more
  • Dollar – earn 50 miles per day on qualifying rentals
  • Hertz – earn 50 miles per rental day on rentals of 1 to 4 days, or 500 miles per rental on rentals of 5 or more days
  • National – earn 50 miles per day on qualifying rentals
  • Thrifty – earn 50 miles per rental day on rentals of 1 to 2 days, or 150 miles per day on rentals of 3 or more days

Hotel Partners

Similar to car parents above, you can also earn Mileage Plan miles instead of hotel points during your stays. Personally, I like my hotel points, but there are cases where I would earn airline miles directly instead, especially where there is a bonus points opportunity or it is a chain that I do not stay with very often.

Below is a list of hotel chains that Alaska Airlines partners with and the earning potential:

  • Alaska Airlines Hotels – earn 500 to 10,000 miles per night
  • Best Western – earn 250 miles per stay on qualifying rates
  • Choice Hotels – earn 250 total miles per eligible stay
  • Coast Hotels and Resorts – earn 500 miles per qualifying stay
  • IHG Rewards Club – earn 1 or 2 miles for every $1 USD spent in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Latin America, and the Caribbean; or earn 500 miles per qualifying stay everywhere else in the world
  • Marriott Bonvoy – earn 1 or 2 miles for every $1 USD spent
  • Rocketmiles – earn 500 to 10,000 miles per night
  • Westmark Hotels – earn 2 miles for every $1 USD spent on accommodations at a qualified rate and earn 1 mile for $1 USD spent on food and beverage purchases (excluding alcohol)

Credit Card Partner

In Canada, we are fortunate enough to have a very competitive co-branded Alaska Airlines credit cards, even comparatively speaking to the United States. If you do any sort of travel with Alaska Airlines (or live in the West Coast), I highly recommend having one of these two cards in your wallet.

MBNA Alaska Airlines Platinum Plus MasterCard

  • $75 annual fee
  • Earn 20,000 sign up bonus miles after spending $1,000 in the first 90 days
  • Earn 3 miles for every $1 spent on Alaska Airlines tickets, vacation packages, cargo and inflight purchases
  • Earn 1 mile for every $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Receive an annual companion fare (from $121 USD)
  • No minimum personal or household income required

MBNA Alaska Airlines World Elite MasterCard

  • $99 annual fee
  • Earn 30,000 sign up bonus miles after spending $1,000 in the first 90 days
  • Earn 3 miles for every $1 spent on Alaska Airlines tickets, vacation packages, cargo and inflight purchases
  • Earn 1 mile for every $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Receive 1 complimentary checked bag per passenger on the same qualifying reservation (up to a maximum of 6 passengers)
  • Receive an annual companion fare (from $121 USD)
  • Have at least $80,000 in personal annual income or $150,000 household income

You can get a $60 cash back by signing up for either of the credit cards through GreatCanadianRebates (if you are creating a new account, you can support us by sending us message in the “contact us” box below, so that I can provide you with my personal referral email. 

List of Destinations Departing from Canadian Airports

Last time’s list had a bit of a shake up, as Alaska airlines stop using Horizon Air and SkyWest Airlines in favour of the Alaska Airlines banner instead.

Below is a list of direct flights departing from Canadian based airports. There are actually no changes from last time on this list.

Vancouver International Airport (YVR)

  • Alaska Airlines: Portland (OR), Seattle/Tacoma

Calgary International Airport (YYC)

  • Alaska Airlines: Seattle/Tacoma

Edmonton International Airport (YEG)

  • Alaska Airlines: Seattle/Tacoma

Victoria International Airport (YYJ)

  • Alaska Airlines: Seattle/Tacoma

Kelowna International Airport (YLW)

  • Alaska Airlines: Seattle/Tacoma

Going Forward

Two things jump to mind when forward thinking. I really hope that MBNA keeps a strong relationship with Alaska Airlines and continue to offers its competitive co-branded card. I really like how they have 2 options to cover a bigger market share. If I had to nitpick, I would like to see them offer a no annual fee version of the card. That card would have to give up the companion benefit, but I think it would be a nice additional option to have.

Secondly, I really hope to see more destinations departing from Canadian airports. Did you ever wonder, how is it called Alaska Airlines, but we have no direct flights to Alaska from Canada? Guess there is not enough traffic.

What would you like to see changed or added? Please let us know in the comment section below.

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Pointshogger aims to provide analysis and updates on earning loyalty reward points and maximizing the value of your points. We hope to inspire our readers to experience the joy of travel and make the most out of what they've already got!

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