Alaska Airlines have made this announcement:
Chasing the Northern Lights is now within reach. Starting Jan. 13, flyers will have the opportunity to escape to the winter wonderland of Alaska for snowshoeing, cross-country skiing and, yes, a chance to see the Northern Lights.
Using the University of Alaska Fairbanks Geophysical Institute’s aurora forecast, Alaska Airlines is offering up to 35% off airfare for travel between the Lower 48 and Fairbanks and Anchorage through Feb. 12. The more intense the Northern Lights forecast, the more flyers will save on flights.
The deal taps into a growing trend among U.S. travelers seeking more spontaneous, experience-based trips while also incorporating science into the adventure. It also comes at a popular time for travel planning – with people making their travel plans for the new year, January is one of the airline’s top months for bookings.
Fares will be discounted daily up to 35% depending on the Kp-index forecast during the travel time period. Scientists use the Kp-index to help predict how visible the Northern Lights might be. Alaska will discount fares based on aurora intensity:
- 0 to 3 Kp = 15% off
- 4 to 5 Kp = 20% off
- 6 to 7 Kp = 25% off
- 8 to 9 Kp = 35% off
Its northern latitude makes Fairbanks the perfect location for greater night sky visibility – far away from bustling cities and their light pollution. Travelers who keep an eye on the aurora and weather forecast and spend a few long winter nights aurora hunting have a good chance of experiencing the dazzling display.
Alaska offers the most flights of any airline to the state of Alaska, with 68 daily flights to 19 destinations including Fairbanks, Anchorage and Juneau. Travelers can fly nonstop from Seattle to Fairbanks on four daily flights and connect easily from 25 West Coast cities.