Breaking – Alaska Airlines Looking to Join the OneWorld Alliance

In an interesting development, the chief commercial officer of Alaska Airlines dropped that the airline would consider joining the OneWorld alliance (think American, British, Qantas, Iberia, etc) but only as a partner “connect” member.

Delta has Skyteam, United has the Star Alliance, and American is part of OneWorld, but Alaska has always remained a part of their own alliance, choosing airlines such as Emirates, Aer Lingus, Fiji Airways, and Korean Air as their partners. Last year they severed their relationship with the large members of Skyteam (Delta, Air France, and KLM) and strengthened their partnerships with the current OneWorld airlines.

Alaska Partners

Heck, we wrote about British Airlines flights credited to Alaska earn up to a whopping 625%. This would definitely be a way to strengthen their relationship to a new level.

Market Strength

The three major markets for Alaska Airlines are Seattle, Los Angeles, and San Francisco, the former two have a large Delta presence and the latter is United’s hub. Since there are so many partners that fly into those airports, it makes perfect sense for Oneworld to use Alaska as a new “connect” partner and feed connecting traffic to them.

image courtesy of American Airlines

In the same release, Alaska said that they are looking into selling partner tickets (such as British and Qantas) on their website. Currently you can buy American Airlines tickets, but only at the very high full fare class of service, often very cost prohibitive.

While Alaska Airlines has a massive fan base here in Seattle, the people that I’ve talked to could not even name 4 of their partners. It’s a fantastic, diverse, and wide ranging alliance, and this just shows that they’re not getting the word out about the depth of their partnership.

Thoughts?

We’ll keep our eyes on this, but it’s pretty amazing news. What do you think? Is an Alaska / Oneworld partnership a good thing? I think so… but share your thoughts!

Tip of the Hat to Skift.com

Author: Jon Nickel-D'Andrea

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4 Comments

  1. I don’t know if AA would allow that. They were close but I think once they started PHL-LAX and decided to keep those 2 AA gates at Dallas Love Field airport I think that things went downhill from there. But hopefully AA and AS can come to some sort of agreement.

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  2. What does this mean: “strengthened their partnerships with the current OneWorld airlines.” ? They did the opposite! Last year they decimated their partnership with AA, no longer recognizing AA elites. (and vice versa). Here’s a link to another blogger’s summary

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    • Well I won’t be posting his link. But I will say that article talks about AA and there’s a lot more to OneWorld than AA. Look at Finnair and British for examples.

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  3. AA isn’t doing so well at connecting onward pax from West Coast gateways, e.g. LAX, and definitely PHX.
    Alaska being a oneworld funnel for transpacific traffic would divert a lot of alliance traffic to DFW/LAX I’d imagine.

    Also praying to see the SQ relarionship continue!

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