How to Book LATAM flights with Alaska Airlines miles
Maybe you’ve been stashing away miles you earned by flying all those business trips your company sends you on, or you applied for the Alaska Airlines credit card and boosted your miles with its bonus. You’ve been dreaming of that South American vacation but you aren’t sure how to make it happen? Fear not! Here’s how.
Alaska partners with LATAM, which is one of only two partners that can get us from the US to beautiful South America, from Argentina and Chile way in the south to Colombia and Ecuador in the north.
If you ended up in this post, it’s because you have already noticed that Alaska’s website does not display award space for LATAM and therefore one cannot book these awards online. All you have to do is call up Alaska and they will be more than happy to help you do just that. It always helps, though, to feed call center agents exact flights and dates to make their lives (and ours) easier.
Cool. But how do I find availability?
Easy. All you have to do is find out which flights you’re interested in booking, segment by segment, and what better place to do that than LATAM’s website? Once we’ve figured that out, we’ll go to British Airways’ website and use their search engine to find those same flights there and determine whether they’re available for award redemption on the dates you’re looking to secure.
As you’re going down the list of flights that strike your fancy, ensure that they’re all operated by LAN (flight numbers LA) and not TAM (flight numbers JJ). Why is that? LAN was Alaska’s original partner, and after its merger with Brazil’s TAM, they became LATAM. However, since they to this day continue to operate as individual airlines, Alaska does not have access to the TAM side of the LATAM inventory for you to book flights on. Beware of codeshare flights! Similarly, I have been unsuccessful in booking flights on the Argentinian subsidiary of LAN with flight numbers 4M, with very confusing multiple responses from Alaska Airlines’ agents on the phone.
You’ll need just 25K Mileage Plan miles plus taxes and fees for a one-way Off-Peak Coach ticket (March 15th through June 15th and August, October and November), and 30K for a one-way Peak Coach ticket (January 1st through March 14th and July, September and December).
For awards on LATAM’s Premium Business, you will need just 45K Mileage Plan miles each way.
Is it worth it?
Well… for reference, it costs 25K (non-refundable) or 60K (refundable) Mileage Plan miles to redeem a First Class ticket on Alaska Airlines from Seattle to Fort Lauderdale, so you tell me.
Now that you know how to book your flights on LATAM using your Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan, where will your next booking take you?