drinks2 With Black Friday and Cyber Monday flight deals, flyers want to escape somewhere warm, alone

Cheers to being a savvy flight shopper.

After a long weekend traditionally spent with family, people are ready to escape by the time Black Friday and Cyber Monday roll around.

Starting Nov. 24, check alaskaair.com for Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales and score our best deals of the year on flights.

Based on last year’s stats from alaskaair.com, we found that the majority of Cyber Monday shoppers are looking to book travel to a warm destination — without anybody else.

Here’s what we learned:

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12 square Weekend Wanderer: San Diego to AlbuquerqueBy Katie Dillion, La Jolla Mom

If Albuquerque isn’t on your sightseeing to-do list, it should be.

The largest city in New Mexico is a neat fusion of multiple cultures and influences from Native American pueblos to Route 66 to computers and rocketry.  As a result of this and its location, Albuquerque is home to a very unique and mouthwatering food culture.

It also has, in addition to some surprisingly-excellent museums, a lot of outdoor activities beyond hot air ballooning.

Book your flight to Albuquerque.

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Alaska Airlines is excited to announce additional flights between Pullman-Moscow Regional Airport and Seattle-Tacoma International Airport for those times when Cougars want them most.

In partnership with Washington State University, Alaska is adding flights during the school’s start to the spring semester in early January, and during dates around WSU’s spring break in March.

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As turkeys are basted and gifts are wrapped, airline employees are making holiday preparations of a different sort.

Every year, the week of Thanksgiving and the last two weeks of December are typically airlines’ busiest travel periods.

Bonus tip: You can bring gravy in your carry-on bag, but make sure it’s less than 3.4 ounces, per TSA.

At Alaska Airlines, the Sunday and Monday after Thanksgiving are the busiest travel days of the year. According to Airlines for America, 28.5 million people will be traveling on U.S. airlines during the Thanksgiving travel period, which begins Friday, Nov. 17 and runs through Nov. 28. That’s up 3 percent over last year.

To kick off the busy holiday season, Alaska’s airport employees offer five tips for making your journey as smooth as possible.

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Among the most popular benefits of the Alaska Airlines Visa Signature® card is the annual companion fare. This is a discounted fare from $121 ($99 plus taxes and fees from $22) that can be used on just about any Alaska Airlines or Virgin America itinerary. Cardholders also enjoy a free checked bag for themselves and up to six other passengers (so a total of seven) in their reservation, triple miles on Alaska purchases, and one mile for every dollar spent on everyday purchases.

There are many ways to maximize the value of the companion fare and potentially save hundreds of dollars on air travel each year.

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Two aviation geeks met up last week to fly an old plane.

That usually wouldn’t be noteworthy, except the pilots just happened to be Alaska Airlines CEO Brad Tilden and Hawaiian Airlines CEO Mark Dunkerley.

brad tilden 1 CEOs of Alaska Airlines, Hawaiian Airlines fly 1929 plane that has historical ties to both companiesAnd this exact aircraft – a 1929 Bellanca CH-300 Pacemaker, tail number NC251M – has historical ties to both airlines.

Nearly 90 years ago, this was the first aircraft in Hawaiian’s fleet. A few years after that, the plane was brought to state of Alaska and served in the fleet that would become Alaska Airlines.

It’s a special connection between two pioneering airlines named for states that are uniquely reliant on air travel. And it made for a fun flight for a couple of guys who are crazy about airplanes.

“This was the first airplane that Hawaiian carried customers in, and one of the first airplanes that Alaska carried customers in,” Tilden said. “I could not have been more honored to fly the airplane alongside Mark.”

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21 ‘Honor Flights’ take veterans to D.C. war memorials

Veterans return from Washington, D.C., to a welcome home ceremony at Sea-Tac Airport. Photo by Steve Mahler.

Some arrived in wheelchairs. Others were aided by walkers or canes. Some came on the arm of a guardian.

The veterans of World War II, the Korean War and Vietnam were boarding an Honor Flight on their way to Washington, D.C., to visit the monuments and memorials that honor their service and sacrifice.

Alaska Airlines has flown more than 1,500 veterans on 31 Honor Flights since 2012.

Both Alaska and Virgin America provide free travel for the veterans, and discounted travel for their guardians, in partnership with the Honor Flight Network.

“These brave men and women made great sacrifices for our country,” said Marilyn Romano, Alaska Airlines regional vice president in the state of Alaska. “It is an honor to help them fulfill a dream to see the memorials dedicated to all that have served.”

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To celebrate 10 years of flying to the Islands, Alaska Airlines has given $100,000 to 10 nonprofits in Hawaii – $10,000 each.

“Hawaii has a special relationship with Alaska Airlines. During the Great Recession, the airline provided a U.S. West Coast connection and a much-needed boost to our economy,” said Hawaii Gov. David Ige. “Ten years later, it’s the number one carrier from that market, and its passengers contribute over $2 billion to the state’s economy each year. But the bond goes beyond the economic impact. Alaska Airlines is part of our ohana and our shared values. We look forward to a long and productive future together.”

The Alaska Airlines Foundation provided the $10,000 grants to the 10 organizations during a community reception Monday at The Royal Hawaiian in Waikiki. See the list of nonprofits below.

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Ah, mezcal – tequila’s smoky sister.

Mezcal is derived from various types of agave and is known for its smoky flavor. It’s just something you must drink when you visit Mexico City.

You’ll find extensive mezcal collections and incredible mezcal cocktails throughout the bars here, and I enjoyed drinking my way through as many of them as I could on a recent visit. You dont want to miss these mezcal cocktails when you’re in Mexico City!

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Wintry weather is expected to continue with forecasts showing snow beginning early Sunday morning and continuing through midday.

In anticipation of this weather event, Alaska Airlines has canceled 25 flights in and out of Seattle between 6 a.m. and noon Sunday, Nov. 5.

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