If there’s one trend we’ve seen from Seattle-based Alaska Airlines over the past year, it’s that they’ve been scaling back their relationship with Delta, and improving their relationship with American.
This all stems from the battle going on between Alaska and Delta in Seattle. We’ve seen cut after cut in their relationship, from Alaska cutting elite benefits for Delta SkyMiles members, and Delta reciprocating. Most recently it was announced that the airlines will be cutting reciprocal lounge access in 2016. Heck, Alaska has even pursued partnerships and announced promotions with the clear intend of spiting Delta.
While Alaska and Delta are scaling back their partnership, Alaska and American are strengthening their relationship. For example, they recently announced expanded reciprocal lounge access.
While perhaps a minor improvement, it’s worth noting that American recently increased checked baggage allowances for Alaska’s top tier members.
Alaska Mileage Plan MVP Gold 75K members now receive the first three checked bags free, which is the same benefit that AAdvantage Executive Platinum members and oneworld Emerald members get.
American’s new baggage allowance
Previously American allowed MVP Gold and MVP Gold 75K members to check two bags free of charge.
This is a nice improvement, and one of the few instances where we’ve seen a partner airline differentiate between MVP Gold and MVP Gold 75K when it comes to recognition.
Most importantly, it signifies that Alaska and American are working on improving their relationship even further. I’m curious if we’ll see reciprocal upgrades next, or any other policies which make the travel experience between the two airlines more seamless.
(Tip of the hat to beckoa on FlyerTalk)