Delta is not playing nice with their codeshare partner Alaska Airline and they are proving they are serious about turning Seattle into more than just a gateway to Asia, but instead as a major focal city. Today, Delta announced three new routes from Seattle including flights to Portland, Anchorage, and San Diego. This annoucement is just one of many that came on the heels of new routes to Asia, Europe, and up and down the west coast.
Delta will now compete with Alaska on 6 new North-South West Coast routes, all of which have launched in the last 12 months from Seattle. These include: Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Portland, Anchorage, and San Diego.
Today’s announcement includes the following new routes:
- Four new daily nonstop flights from San Diego beginning June 2, 2014.
- Four new daily nonstop flights from Portland, Ore. beginning Sept. 2, 2014.
- One summer seasonal flight from Anchorage, Alaska beginning June 5, 2014 in addition to returning seasonal service which begins on May 23, 2014.
Delta’s Newly Expanded West Coast Service From Seattle
Delta is sending a clear message to Alaska Airline, telling them that they want to shuttle their own passengers to and from their Seattle International gateway and rely on Alaska less than ever before.
“We have continued to strategically add service from key markets in an effort to support passenger demand for our expanding international destinations,” said Mike Medeiros, Delta’s vice president – Seattle. “Delta’s most recent additions will provide our customers with one-stop access to and from several of the top international and domestic destinations via our growing global gateway in Seattle.”
Once these routes launch, Delta and Alaska will compete on 11 routes from Seattle throughout the United States, while a year ago, Delta and Alaska only competed on 5 routes from Seattle.
Delta’s and Alaska Airlines routes that overlap from Seattle
The fight for passengers has not been limited to Seattle either. In fact, Delta has expanded service in other strong Alaska/Horizon markets including Los Angeles to Portland, San Jose, Puerto Vallarta, and Anchorage.
Delta’s expansion from LAX that overlaps Alaska’s current route map (not including Seattle)
Is Delta trying to expand their presence on the west coast or is there some foul play going on? That will be for you to decide, but remember, in an interview with the The Puget Sound Business Journal in October Delta’s vice president for Seattle, Mike Medeiros said,
Delta and Alaska are “fierce competitors…We’re very committed to Seattle,” he said. “And what that means is we’ll be looking for opportunities on the West Coast — including California — for Delta airplanes.”
Whatever is going on, it is clear that Delta is expanding on the west coast and trying to cut into their reliance on Alaska Airline. How will this affect things in the future? Time will tell. But could Alaska be Delta’s next target buyout (a long term industry expectation) or will this lead to Alaska and American Airline syncing up more closely?
Either way, more flights and planes mean cheaper flights are coming to many west coast markets and there are already promotions such as Alaska’s Double Elite and Redeemable miles on many west coast routes.