Category Archives: Alaska Airlines

Alaska Airlines named Official Airline of the San Francisco Giants, A321 theme jet coming

Alaska Airlines named Official Airline of the San Francisco Giants (PRNewsfoto/Alaska Airlines)

Alaska Airlines has announced the company has signed an agreement to become the official airline of the San Francisco Giants for the next seven years, extending the partnership that Virgin America established with the organization in 2008. To celebrate this partnership and Alaska’s commitment to the Bay Area, the company unveiled the design for an Airbus 321 featuring the Giants logo and team colors that will begin flying early next year.

 

The extended partnership features several cobranded elements which will be introduced over the next several months leading into the 2018 season. They include:

  • An Alaska Airlines customized suite located in AT&T Park’s right field with views of McCovey Cove;
  • The naming rights to the AT&T Park Club Level which will be called the “Alaska Airlines Club Level” and be updated to combine the look and feel of the airline with the premium level experiences Giants fans have appreciated on this level of the ballpark; and
  • The new Giants-themed Airbus 321, operated by Virgin America, will feature the iconic Golden Gate bridge in orange across the fuselage with the orange and black Giants logo above the wing and a large black “SF” on the back section of the fuselage.

The Alaska/Giants partnership will also feature many fan-friendly components including:

  • Alaska in-flight Giants offers;
  • Special vacation packages for Giants fans through the Giants Vacations program;
  • Alaska serving as the presenting partner for the Giant Races, which are a series of foot races that include events such as a Half Marathon, 10k, 5k and Kids Race/Family Relay, held in Scottsdale, Sacramento, San Jose and San Francisco and benefit local community groups;
  • Continuation of the highly popular “Two-For-One” Flight Voucher event for the first 40,000 Giants fans attending a Giants home game each season. The first “Two-For-One” event will be this coming Sunday, Sept. 17; and
  • Alaska will launch a seasonal, twice daily flight from San Francisco to Phoenix, Arizona for Giants fans to attend Spring Training in 2018. The flight schedule is being finalized and tickets will go on sale later this year.

Another important element of this partnership will be the collaboration and support of both Alaska Airlines and the Giants on important community initiatives and programs focused on youth and education throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.

Image: Alaska Airlines.

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Alaska Airlines salutes the Seattle Mariners on their 40th Anniversary

Alaska introduces the Seattle Mariners 40th anniversary plane. (PRNewsfoto/Alaska Airlines)

Alaska Airlines on June 28, 2017 relesed this statement and photo:

As a symbol of the long-standing partnership between Alaska Airlines and the Seattle Mariners, today Alaska officially unveiled a specially-marked Boeing 737-800, featuring the Seattle Mariners logo and the 40th anniversary design across the fuselage. The official hashtag of the Mariners-Alaska partnership, #MyOhMariners, appears next to the boarding door. Guests seated over the wings will be able to see the hashtag on the plane’s winglets.

Both organizations are dedicated to helping communities both in Seattle and around the world. For every home run hit by a Mariners player during the 2017 season, as part of the Mariners Care program, Alaskawill donate 10,000 airline miles to the United Negro College Fund (UNCF) – Seattle Chapter to help worthy students succeed in education. Miles donated supplement a 1-million-mile seed gift from Alaska Airlines and will help students fly to college tours, travel back and forth between school and home, and participate in a variety of leadership development programs and other programming offered by UNCF. This year there have been 73 home runs to-date and the total is expected to reach the goal of 100 by the close of the season.

Since 2016, Alaska has donated more than 8 million miles to charities and community projects through the Mariners Care program. Alaska also supports Robinson Canó’s RC22 Foundation, that has a mission to help build schools in the Dominican Republic. In November 2015, RC22 opened its first school in Canó’s hometown of San Pedro de Macorís, Dominican Republic.

Photo: Alaska Airlines.

Alaska Airlines to offer nine daily departures from Paine Field in 2018

Alaska Airlines has issued this statement:

Air travel will get a lot easier for flyers living in Snohomish County and North King County, Washington, next year when Alaska Airlines introduces commercial service from Paine Field – Snohomish County Airport. Subject to government approvals, starting by fall of 2018, more than a million North Sound travelers will enjoy shorter commutes to the airport and up to nine daily departures.

Alaska Airlines plans to operate nine daily departures from Paine Field using a fuel-efficient fleet of Boeing 737 and Embraer 175 aircraft.

Groundbreaking on the new terminal is expected in early June, with full details of Alaska’s routes as well as ticket sale information to be announced in early 2018.

Image: Alaska Airlines.

Alaska to retire the Virgin America brand in 2019 but will adopt many brand elements

Virgin America Airbus A320-214 N844VA (msn 4851) SEA (Michael B. Ing). Image: 928791.

Alaska Airlines and Virgin America on March 22, 2017 shared their vision for the future of the combined carrier, as the company solidifies its status as the West Coast’s premier airline.

The group continued:

After careful consideration, the combined company will adopt Alaska’s name and logo, retiring the Virgin America name likely sometime in 2019. However, the combined airline will adopt many of the brand elements that Virgin America enthusiasts love about their favorite airline, including enhanced in-flight entertainment, mood lighting, music and the relentless desire to make flying a different experience for guests. The goal is to create a warm and welcoming West Coast-inspired vibe.

Alaska has been actively growing the airlines’ newly combined networks since closing the merger in December. Earlier this month, the airline announced 21 new markets with 25 new daily departures out of San Francisco, San Diego, Los Angeles and San Jose, California – marking the largest addition of routes in the company’s history.

Alaska Airlines' "More to Love" merger livery

Above Copyright Photo: Alaska Airlines (Alaska + Virgin America) Boeing 737-990 ER SSWL N493AS (msn 41727) (More to Love) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 936924.

In addition to low fares, network growth and award-winning service, Alaska will spend the next few years making major enhancements to its already award-winning guest experience and incorporating favorite elements of the Virgin America experience.

Enhancements include:

  • Modern, warm and welcoming vibe – Guests will start to see some of the new Alaska brand personality come to life throughout 2017, to create a warm and welcoming West Coast vibe throughout the guest journey. Music from fresh new artists will be featured on planes, in airport lobbies and at gates. In 2018, Alaska will debut an entirely redesigned cabin with new seats and amenities, and has already started to retrofit select Boeing aircraft with expressive blue mood lighting. Modern, stylish uniforms by fashion designer Luly Yang will roll out in mid-2019 for flight attendants, customer service agents, pilots, mechanics and ground crew.
  • Satellite connectivity – Alaska’s entire fleet of Boeing 737 passenger aircraft will be equipped with high-speed satellite Wi-Fi beginning in fall 2018, with the remainder of the Airbus fleet to follow. Both fleets are expected to be fully satellite-equipped by the end of 2019.
  • More premium seats – Building on Alaska’s new First Class and Premium Class seating sections that debuted earlier this year, premium seating will be expanded across the Airbus fleet beginning in the fourth quarter of 2018. The number of First Class seats will increase by 50 percent (going from eight seats in the Airbus First Class cabin to 12) and are customized for enhanced comfort, featuring 41 inches of pitch, improved seatback storage pockets, cup holders, footrests and personal power outlets throughout the cabin. The redesigned Airbus cabins will also feature 18 new Premium Class seats with 35 inches of pitch and complimentary beer, wine and cocktails.
  • The country’s top-ranked frequent flier program – In 2018, Alaska Mileage Plan will become the sole loyalty program for both airlines, offering guests more rewards, an expansive global partner network and the only major airline loyalty program that still rewards a mile flown with a mile earned on Alaska and Virgin America flights. Members of Alaska Mileage Plan enjoy some of the most generous benefits in the industry including complimentary upgrades, award travel starting at 5,000 miles one-way (plus taxes and fees) and a faster path to elite status compared to other airlines. With Alaska and Alaska Global Partners, members can earn and redeem miles to more than 900 destinations worldwide.
  • Complimentary upgrades – With 50 percent more premium seats being introduced to the Airbus fleet, elite loyalty members will enjoy the most generous complimentary upgrades in the industry. Mileage Plan MVP Golds and above are upgraded to First Class or Premium Class 75 percent of the time (based on average historic system wide rates of upgrade) on Alaska Airlines flights. Complimentary upgrades on Airbus aircraft will debut for the first time ever in late 2018.
  • Free movies – In January, Alaska launched a temporary promotion offering its entire catalog of more than 200 movies and TV shows for free. Starting now, free entertainment on guests’ own devices will be a permanent feature on its Boeing fleet and the same free library of movies and TV shows will expand to Airbus aircraft via Red entertainment system in August 2017. Guests on Airbus aircraft will continue to enjoy access to early release movies for purchase.
  • Free Chat™ – In January 2017, Alaska became the first and only U.S. airline to offer Free Chat onboard and will expand Free Chat to Airbus-operated flights in August 2017. Guests can stay connected to friends and family on the ground via Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp and iMessage.
  • West Coast-inspired food and beverage – Alaska and Virgin America continue to enhance their fresh, healthy, West Coast-inspired onboard food and beverage menus. Guests of both airlines enjoy craft brews, premium wines and delicious food options. By June 2017, Alaska First Class passengers will be able to pre-select meals before they fly, and by early 2018, Alaska’s Main Cabin passengers will be able to pre-pay for their meals before they fly. Food pre-ordering will be extended to Airbus flights sometime in the future.
  • Lounge expansion – By early 2019, guests will be able to relax in refreshed and expanded airport lounges in Seattle, Portland and Los Angeles, as well as new lounges in San Francisco and at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport. The expansion plans will double the square footage of Alaska’s airport lounges. Members also currently enjoy access to more than 60 partner lounges throughout the United States and around the world.

Alaska Airlines and Virgin America along with their regional partners, fly 40 million customers a year to 118 destinations with an average of 1,200 daily flights across the United States and to Mexico, Canada, Costa Rica and Cuba.

Top Copyright Photo: Virgin America Airbus A320-214 N844VA (msn 4851) SEA (Michael B. Ing). Image: 928791 (all others by Alaska Airlines).

Alaska Airlines aircraft slide show:

Virgin America aircraft slide show:

Alaska Airlines announces 13 new nonstop routes from the Bay Area

Virgin America Airbus A320-214 WL N365VA (msn 7207) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 936380.

Alaska Airlines has made this announcement:

Three months after its acquisition of Virgin America, Alaska Airlines is growing its Bay Area footprint, adding 13 new nonstop markets from San Francisco International Airport and Mineta San Jose International Airport. The routes mark the single largest new market announcement in Alaska Airlines history. With the additional flights, Alaska Airlines and Virgin America will offer guests 125 daily nonstop flights to 42 destinations from the three major Bay Area airports.

 

The new flights build on previously announced Bay Area routes scheduled to begin in the coming months, which include San Jose-Newark, San Jose-Burbank, San Francisco-Orlando, San Francisco-Orange County, San Francisco-Minneapolis and San Francisco-Mexico City.

With these new routes being flown by Virgin America Airbus A320s, will they be rebranded as Alaska Airlines? Alaska Airlines has not yet made the branding decision.

Schedule of new daily service:

Top Copyright Photo: Virgin America Airbus A320-214 WL N365VA (msn 7207) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 936380.

Virgin America aircraft slide show:

Alaska Airlines unveils its “More to Love” special livery on N493AS

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Alaska Airlines today (December 14, 2016) unveiled at San Francisco (the home of Virgin America) a special Alaska Airlines + Virgin America “More to Love” livery on the pictured Boeing 737-990 ER 493AS (msn 41727). Here are the first photos from the unveiling ceremony.

Copyright Photos: Mark Durbin.

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Alaska Air Group announces the closing of the acquisition of Virgin America, no decision on the Virgin America brand

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Alaska Air Group Inc. on December 14, 2016 announced it has closed its acquisition of Virgin America. The definitive merger agreement, which was signed in April and approved by Virgin America shareholders in July, brings together two of the country’s favorite airlines into a unified force that will provide an attractive alternative to the “Big 4” airlines that currently control 84 percent of the domestic market.

Alaska Airlines and Virgin America will spend the next year working to secure Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certification to allow the two airlines to operate as a single carrier (with regional sister carrier Horizon Air remaining on its own separate operating certificate).

Today, Alaska Air Group boasts nearly 1,200 daily flights to 118 destinations, the most seats on flights from the West Coast and more than $7 billion annual revenues. Alaska Air Group will continue to provide customers the low fares, unmatched reliability and award-winning service they’ve come to enjoy, while offering a convenient schedule of flights to even more of the places they want to fly. Soon Virgin America customers will have access to a route network that offers six times more daily flights than before.

The combination expands service and provides more frequent connections to international airline partners in thriving technology markets in the Bay Area, Los Angeles and Seattle/Tacoma.

Together, the airlines offer 289 daily flights to 52 destinations from California, including 113 daily nonstop flights to 32 destinations from three Bay Area airports and 105 daily nonstop flights to 37 destinations from four Los Angeles area airports.

In addition, the combination opens up growth opportunities in important East Coast business markets by increasing Alaska Air Group’s access to high-demand airports like Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport and the three primary New York City-area airports: John F. Kennedy International Airport, LaGuardia Airport and Newark Liberty International Airport.

The company also announced new flights from its San Francisco hub to Orlando (daily), Minneapolis/St. Paul (twice daily) and Orange County, California (four times daily) beginning in the summer of 2017.

The combination expands service and provides more frequent connections to international airline partners in thriving technology markets in the Bay Area, Los Angeles and Seattle. Together, the airlines offer 289 daily flights to 52 destinations from California, including 113 daily nonstop flights to 32 destinations from three Bay Area airports and 105 daily nonstop flights to 37 destinations from four Los Angeles area airports.

In addition, the combination opens up growth opportunities in important East Coast business markets by increasing Alaska Air Group’s access to high-demand airports like Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport and the three primary New York City-area airports: John F. Kennedy International Airport, LaGuardia Airport and Newark Liberty International Airport.

The company also announced new flights from its San Francisco hub to Orlando (daily), Minneapolis (twice daily) and Orange County, California (four times daily) beginning in the summer of 2017.

To celebrate the merger of two beloved West Coast airlines, Alaska leaders will join employees from Virgin America, Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air on December 14, 2016 at San Francisco International Airport for the unveiling of a co-branded Boeing 737 featuring a special, one-time livery painted in shimmering red, purple and blue. The aircraft features the slogan “More to love” and will fly throughout Alaska Airlines’ route network starting the same day, in celebration of the increased customer benefits of the combination.

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