Mileage Plan

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Mileage Plan is a customer loyalty scheme, also known as a frequent-flyer program, of United States based airline, Alaska Airlines.


In 1981, American Airlines began AAdvantage, a customer loyalty scheme popularly known as frequent flyer programs. Soon afterwards, other large airlines in the United States launched similar programs. In June, 1983, Alaska Airlines began their frequent flyer program named Gold Coast Travel.

Alaska Airlines acquired Jet America Airlines in 1987. Jet America's frequent flyer program was discontinued. Jet America's frequent flyer program credited flights by segments (number of flights taken), which differed from Gold Coast Travel, where members earned credits based on the mileage of flights taken. Participants of Jet America's frequent flyer program were enrolled in Alaska Airlines' Gold Coast Travel and credited miles instead of flight segments that they previously held.

In September 1989, Gold Coast Travel was renamed Mileage Plan.

Miles that participants held in Mileage Plan previously did not have expiration dates. Later, Mileage Plan cancelled balances if there were no activity in terms of additions or withdrawals after 24 months.

In 2015 and 2016, major airlines in the United States switched to a revenue based mileage accumulation scheme were miles were credited based on the fare paid. For passengers flying economy class, this change resulted in fewer miles accumulated compared with the distance based scheme. Alaska Airlines did not adopt this common revenue based mileage accumulation scheme.

Membership tiers[edit]

MVP, MVP Gold and MVP Gold 75K are Mileage Plan's elite tiers for frequent travelers. Members in the elite tiers receive additional benefits compared to cattle or non-elite members.

MVP is achieved when the member flies 20,000 miles on Alaska Airlines or Horizon Air or 25,000 miles on Alaska Airlines or certain partner airlines. To qualify, miles must be earned by flights, not by bonuses from rental cars, credit cards or other methods.

Partner airlines[edit]

Alaska Airlines' Mileage Plan credits flights taken on several partner airlines, including wholly owned Horizon Airlines, as well as Oneworld alliance member airlines (American Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, LAN and Qantas), SkyTeam member airlines (Delta, Aeromexico, Air France, KLM and Korean Air); as well as Fiji Airways, Emirates, Era Alaska, Mokulele Airlines, PenAir and Hainan Airlines.

There are exceptions, such as American Airlines codeshare flights on British Airways (flights ticketed with an American Airlines flight number but operated by British Airways), are not given mileage credit.

Award redemptions[edit]

On March 21, 2016, Alaska Airlines a promotional award where Mileage Plus members can redeem 10,000 miles to cover the $85 cost of a PreCheck screening application charged by the Transportation Security Administration.

Unlike nearly any other loyalty program, Alaska charges different mileage prices depending which airline you fly. This results in the ability to redeem fewer mileages for an award depending on the airline used.

Mileage Plan is the recipient of the U.S. News & World Report 2015-16 Best Travel Rewards Programs based on an airline's overall score on the ease of earning miles or points and the ease of award redemptions as well ways to earn points other than flights, additional membership perks, whether miles expire, award flight availability and other criteria.[1]


  1. ^ Baskas, Harriet (August 4, 2015). "Alaska Airlines' Mileage Plan lands top spot in loyalty program rankings". USA Today. Retrieved May 2, 2016.