Alaska Airlines announces Oneworld perks for elite members

Dec 10, 2020

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Alaska Airlines is forging ahead with its plans to join the Oneworld frequent flyer alliance.

On Thursday, the Seattle-based carrier unveiled how it plans to reward its most loyal Mileage Plan members with Oneworld perks.

Specifically, in line with expectations for a three-tiered elite-status model, Mileage Plan status will map to the three Oneworld tiers as follows:

  • MVP = Oneworld Ruby
  • MVP Gold = Oneworld Sapphire
  • MVP Gold 75K = Oneworld Emerald

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As a Oneworld elite, Alaska flyers will enjoy a subset of their traditional perks when flying on one of the other 13 member airlines.

While elites won’t be eligible for alliance-wide upgrades (though Oneworld upgrades with miles are coming), they will enjoy a host of day-of-departure perks. Ruby status includes access to business-class check-in, priority seating and priority waitlists and standby.

Sapphire status unlocks business-class lounges, as well as additional baggage allowances, priority handling and more. Finally, Emerald, Oneworld’s highest tier, includes a TPG-favorite: access to first-class check-in and lounges, even when flying in the back in the plane.

As such, Alaska MVP Gold 75K members will enjoy complimentary access to top-notch lounges, like Cathay Pacific’s The Pier and Qantas’ First lounge in Singapore, even when flying in coach on those airlines.

The Oneworld perks, which will take effect when Alaska officially becomes a member on March 31, 2021, are valid on all member airlines. However, Alaska and American Airlines have already unveiled an even deeper integration of their elite status perks.

Related: Alaska frequent flyers have a lot to look forward to in 2021

Once the partnership launches, Alaska’s top-tier MVP Gold 75K members will have access to international long-haul upgrades on AA – though specific details of how that will work have not yet been revealed. Additionally, MVP Gold 75K and Gold members will enjoy complimentary extra-legroom Main Cabin Extra seats for free at the time of booking. (All Alaska elites will be eligible for complimentary Preferred seats positioned at favorable locations within the cabin.)

Thursday’s announcement is the latest move from the Seattle-based carrier in its push to join Oneworld. Earlier this week, the carrier teamed up with Qatar, another Oneworld member, to lay the groundwork for a codeshare partnership.

The two carriers are launching reciprocal mileage earning beginning Dec. 15, though redemptions won’t become available until March 31. As part of the news, Qatar announced that it’ll start flying to Alaska’s largest hub in Seattle.

Featured photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

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