Wednesday, 28 March 2018

Alaska Airlines and Aer Lingus tie up


Alaska Airlines and Aer Lingus announced a broad partnership that will provide Mileage Plan members more ways to earn and redeem miles to Europe. The carriers will begin interline availability across their respective networks starting in April. Alaska Mileage Plan members will be able to earn and redeem miles on Aer Lingus flights and Aer Lingus AerClub members will also be able to earn and redeem miles on Alaska, starting at a later date.




Aer Lingus currently serves Dublin from 13 cities in North America, including from Alaska's gateway cities of Los Angeles, San Francisco and – starting May 18 – nonstop from Seattle.

"This new partnership with Aer Lingus is another example of how Alaska is giving our Mileage Plan members more and more ways to travel and earn miles to all corners of the map through our diverse global partners," said Andrew Harrison, Alaska Airlines' executive vice president and chief commercial officer. "Aer Lingus provides our members even more reach for travel within Europe, with seamless service through Dublin to 24 cities in the U.K. and Europe."

"We're pleased to join with Alaska Airlines. It's a meeting of like-minded, service-oriented carriers bringing attractive propositions to their respective travellers," said Greg Kaldahl, Aer Lingus' chief strategy and planning officer. "Our Aer Lingus guests will now be able to connect onwards to a wide range of destinations up and down the West Coast, Alaska and Hawaii; while loyal Alaska flyers will gain the opportunity to fly transatlantic on Ireland's only 4-star airline. We are looking forward to a long and successful partnership."

The capital and largest city in Ireland, Dublin has become a new hub for U.S. technology companies doing business in Europe. The city hosts the annual Dublin Tech Summit each spring, which is attended by influential global companies and innovators.

"The Emerald Isle is a fabulous destination, and we look forward to welcoming new visitors to Seattle and the Northwest," said Port of Seattle Commission President Courtney Gregoire. "Demand for this route was high. Not only does Seattle have strong business ties to Ireland – with Microsoft and Amazon bases there, but the cultural connections span centuries."

Aer Lingus will fly Airbus A330-200 wide-body aircraft on its new route from Seattle to Dublin. Since Dublin airport has its own U.S. Customs and Border Protection facility, passengers and their luggage will be pre-cleared in Ireland before departure, with no need to go through passport control on arrival in Seattle.

Aer Lingus is the national airline of Ireland, founded in 1936. It operates 63 aircraft on more than 100 routes to destinations in the U.K., Europe and North America and carries more than 12 million guests per annum. Aer Lingus is Ireland's only 4-Star airline, awarded by Skytrax, the international air transport rating organization. Its mission is to connect Ireland to the world and to become the leading value carrier operating across the North Atlantic. Its home base is Dublin Airport. Aer Lingus is a member of International Airlines Group (IAG), one of the world's largest airline groups.

Reaction to this agreement has been mixed, many see the benefits for Alaska Airlines members relatively limited compared to those now open to Aer Lingus AerClub members. Various aviation commentators have expressed that Alaska Airlines may end up regretting the decision as the level of customer service is vastly different between the two carriers frequent traveller programmes. Alaska has a six-day response average, AerClub has a six-month average, with many issues still not resolved after sixteen months. 
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