Alaska Airlines has one of the hidden gems of value specially for folks staying on the west coast in one of the Alaska hubs to Hawaiian Islands. One value is booking a direct award flight (provided it is available at lowest mileage level) using British Airways Avios. The other better value is flying in "first class" on revenue ticket for Economy class ticket cost or less. This can be best maximized if you have companion travelling with you. Let me explain you this!
You need two different kind of certificates to fly first at the cost of Economy. These are:
So, let me walk you through this with example below:
Flying from SJC (San Jose, CA) to OGG (Maui, Hawaii) in September around Labor day weekend of 2015:
You need to "enable" the "Advance Search" option on Alaska Airlines website as highlighted in red in below screen shot.
On the next page you will see "drop down box" for Upgrade Certificate type and a Discount code field box as shown on screen shot below. Select "MVP Gold Guest Upgrade" from the drop down for now and keep the "Discount code" field empty for now just to see the prices.
As you can see in below picture there is availability with "Upgradable Space" shown. The one where the "U" symbol besides the flight detail is highlighted shows the Upgrade availability is there for instant upgrade. You should look out for "only this kind of upgrade" as it is guaranteed upgrade space.
Let's do the above search again by entering the discount code you would have in your account provided by BofA for your Alaska Airlines companion certificate. The companion ticket costs $99 + taxes & fees only. Below is the new cost with companion discount code being applied.
As you can see from above two snap shots. The initial cost of $485 for the 2nd passenger or the companion passenger has been reduced to mere $146 only. So, essentially you bought the round trip ticket for 2 persons on Alaska Airlines "first class" for just ~$631 in total. As you can see from below snap shot the best bargain you can get using combination of certificates.
So, remember next time you travel on Alaska Airlines you might be actually able to travel in first class for less than Economy/Coach class fare.
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