Sadly, the partnership between Alaska Airlines and Air France/KLM will be ending on April 30, 2018. (HT to Single Flyer) This comes shortly after Air France is expected to launch new service to Seattle with flights beginning March 25. In other words, you have about a month to enjoy that flight as a Mileage Plan member, whether earning or redeeming Alaska miles.
After that, expect to be stuck with Delta’s SkyMiles program or the newly devalued Air France/KLM Flying Blue when you want to fly on Air France. Both are one step away from being revenue based and are, in my view, significantly less rewarding to the customer.
It’s not entirely surprising since Alaska already severed its relationship with Delta. I still pushed back on the idea — originally suggested by Single Flyer — because I just don’t think that everything needs to go Delta’s way. I guess I was wrong.
Sadly, I wasn’t wrong. Alaska and KLM+AirFrance ending partnership. https://t.co/8tZgTYyhfT
— Alan – SingleFlyer (@single_flyer) December 6, 2017
Although Alaska is continuing to add new partners, my impression is that it is increasingly surrounded by oneworld Alliance members (including American Airlines, British Airways, and Cathay Pacific), and several minor players in the European market, such as Condor and Icelandair. At least they recognized the gap in making their announcement. Plus, the American Airlines partnership is being slowly wound down to exclude much of the domestic market.
I’m not throwing up my hands yet. I travel more often to Asia than to Europe, and being on the West Coast the Alaska Airlines network remains more valuable to me than any of the other major U.S. carriers. But it is sad to see one more important partner leave Mileage Plan.