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Today, Alaska Airlines and Hawaiian Airlines announce that they have entered into a merger agreement worth approximately US$1.9 billion. The merger will create a network of 138 destinations served by the two airlines, and over 1,200 destinations through the oneworld alliance.
Hawaiian Airlines will also be fully integrated into the Alaska Mileage Plan frequent flyer program. The merger is expected to take 12 to 18 months to complete.
Alaska Airlines and Hawaiian Airlines - Keeping separate brands
A central aspect of this merger is the commitment to preserve the distinct identities of Alaska Airlines and Hawaiian Airlines. This decision is designed to maintain customer loyalty to these brands while exploiting operational synergies.
his combination is an exciting next step in our collective journey to provide a better travel experience for our guests and expand options for West Coast and Hawai‘i travelers, We have a longstanding and deep respect for Hawaiian Airlines, for their role as a top employer in Hawai‘i, and for how their brand and people carry the warm culture of aloha around the globe.Ben Minicucci, CEO of Alaska Airlines
Alaska Airlines and Hawaiian Airlines - Network expansion
Numerous short- and long-haul routes will be added to the combined network of the two airlines. These can be booked with Alaska Mileage Plan miles, which promises to be a great way to visit Hawaii and the Pacific at low cost.
For example, here are details of the flights served by Hawaiian Airlines from Honolulu International Airport (HNL):
And destinations from Seattle-Tacoma (SEA) by Alaska Airlines:
As the Alaska Mileage Plan program offers a free stopover when booking award flights, it’s the perfect opportunity to combine two trips in one.
Add a stopover in Honolulu to your trip to Japan, Korea, French Polynesia, New Zealand, Australia, the Cook Islands or even American Samoa.
A range of exotic new destinations to add to your bucket list !
What’s more, Hawaiian Airlines’ domestic network makes it possible to visit Hawaii in depth for little money, since distances are short. With the upcoming changes to the Alaska Mileage Plan program in 2024, a flight of less than 700 miles in distance would be just 5,000 Alaska miles in economy class.
For example, you could visit O’ahu and Maui in one trip, or add a third island (Big Island or Kaua’i) to your itinerary if you have enough time.
Alaska Airlines and Hawaiian Airlines - Honolulu hub
After Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA), Honolulu International Airport (HNL) will become Alaska Airlines‘ second hub.
Hawaii ‘s strategic position in relation to the American continent will enable the network to expand into Asia and the Pacific. With the merger of the two airlines, a combined fleet of 365 aircraft will serve 138 destinations.
Alaska Airlines will become the fifth largest airline in the United States.
Alaska Airlines and Hawaiian Airlines - What will happen to the frequent flyer program?
Alaska Airlines has confirmed that Hawaiian Airlines‘ loyalty program, HawaiianMiles, will merge with Alaska Mileage Plan.
Points and status held with Hawaiian Airlines will be transferred to Alaska Airlines, but there are no details yet on when the merger will take place.
The press release states that the transaction is expected to take between 12 and 18 months to complete, subject to the necessary regulatory approvals.
A few weeks ago, Alaska Airlines announced upcoming changes to its Alaska Mileage Plan frequent flyer program. These changes are probably linked to the future merger with Hawaiian Airlines.
Collect Alaska Mileage Plan miles in Canada
With credit cards
Since September 2023, MBNA credit cards affiliated with Alaska Airlines have been completely withdrawn from the Canadian market. Former Alaska Airlines cards have been converted to MBNA Rewards cards.
However, it will soon be possible to convert MBNA Rewards points to the Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan at a rate of 1:1. There’s no date yet set for the launch of the partnership, but we’ll keep you informed of developments.
MBNA has confirmed that this possibility of converting MBNA Rewards points to Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan will be open to all cardholders of the MBNA Rewards World Elite® Mastercard® cardholders or the MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus® Mastercard®once an agreement has been reached between the two companies.
This means that MBNA Rewards World Elite® Mastercard® cardholders will be able to earn up to 5.5 Alaska Miles per dollar spent – taking into account the 10% annual bonus – (and holders of the MBNA Rewards Platinum Plus® Mastercard® can earn up to 2 Alaska miles per dollar spent)!
With transfer partners
Finally, it’s also possible to buy Alaska Mileage Plan miles directly, at a cost of US$0.032 (3.2 US cents) per mile. Promotions are frequent, so stay tuned if you’re considering buying miles in the future.
This merger promises to be very positive for points and miles hunters. The addition of routes served by Hawaiian Airlines to the Alaska Mileage Plan program is an excellent opportunity to visit Hawaii and the Pacific with points.
This program is starting to become attractive again for Canadian travelers, especially when MBNA Rewards points can be converted into Alaska Mileage Plan points. Stay tuned !
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