News

Get to know our CFO Russell Wilson—whose game keeps getting higher

We couldn’t PASS up the chance to show off our favorite quarterback! This special aircraft takes “Love, Respect & Care” to new heights and celebrates the values that Russ shares with Alaska. It will fly throughout Alaska’s network, including taking fans to away games throughout the football season.

Recently, we unveiled our latest special aircraft in honor of our Chief Football Officer (CFO) Russell Wilson, who’s the best at showing up for his hometown and team—including our own.

Wilson has been part of Alaska since 2013, after his rookie year playing professional football. We value his nonstop spirit, dedication to community & ability to always go above and beyond.

“When we can celebrate Russell Wilson in the stands and in the skies, that’s a win-win,” says Sangita Woerner, SVP of marketing and guest experience. “We’re proud to honor the passion and dedication of our Chief Football Officer with this special aircraft, and we’re excited to see him fly high all season long.” 

This is the fourth livery we have done in celebration of Russ. The 737-900 jet recently rolled up to the gate in Seattle to the delight guests who were headed to Indianapolis—where Russ kicked off his first game this season.

Learn more about our CFO’s favorite places to fly and where he’s looking forward to flying next below. 👇🏼

10 things to know about our CFO, feat. Russell Wilson:

Favorite place to fly?

Cabo, Mexico.

Where to next, why?

Belize because I have never been there, and I can’t wait to go and explore the culture, food, and the sights.

Why fly Alaska?

The best commercial airline in the world. The hospitality is top notch, and the inflight service is the best! 

Favorite thing about being our CFO?

Impacting those in my community, people I encounter, and people around the world to Dream BIG.

Go-to onboard meal/drink?

Fruit and Cheese plate.

A must-have carryon item?

My Microsoft surface so I can watch football film and stream inflight movies and TV shows.

Favorite on-board movie or TV show?

Yellowstone.

If he were to have any job at Alaska, what would it be & why?

I love being the Chief Football Officer! I would love to be a Chief Pilot!

His travel tip: Be patient, as plans can change at any time! 

Help us cheer on our Chief Football Officer in style—and in flight!

All season long, if you’re flying out of Seattle or Everett and wearing a Russell Wilson #3 jersey, you board early!

Watch the decal application process in action:

5 ways to malama (care for) Hawaii

There are plenty of reasons to visit Hawaii, from beaches to marine life, food and hiking—but what truly makes it special is the Aloha spirit—the presence and sharing of the essence of Hawaiian life. As visitors to Hawaii, it is our kuleana (responsibility) to honor the Aloha spirit by respecting and exercising malama (care) while you’re in the islands.  

Here are 5 ways you can practice malama, each with a short video by the Hawaii Tourism Authority:  

1. Embrace the culture. 

The next time you visit, try honoring Hawaiian culture by: Learning the language. Olelo Hawaii means Hawaiian language. A native people’s language is the key to unlocking unique systems of knowledge and understanding. Try out a new common phrase or two the next time you’re in the islands. 

2. Safety first — especially hiking trails!

The Hawaiian Islands are known for its natural beauty and it’s important to be mindful of the aina (land), when planning your next visit: Stay on track. When admiring scenic views on public trails, it’s key to stay on the designated path and avoid any edges that could lead to a collapse. Please do not hike on illegal trails—they’re blocked off for your safety and the safety of others.  

3. Save the ocean one spray & sip at a time. 

Gorgeous for photo ops, and even better for swimming in—the ocean is a vast place full of awe and wonder. That’s why, with many travelers visiting each year, it’s important that we each do our part to leave the ocean as healthy as we left it: Use reef-safe sunscreen & reduce plastics.

Seemingly small actions like switching out your sunscreen for a reef-safe option and reducing single-use plastics can add up, which can have a large impact on the ocean by protecting the living reef ecosystem and prevent microplastics from building up in the sea.  

4. Watch the water and weather. 

With its warm blankets of sand, glistening waves and swaying trees above, it’s obvious why Hawaiian beaches are the most sought-out experience when visiting. However, we must remember that the ocean is subject to winds of change so: Keep a close eye on conditions.

Even if the water may look calm, it’s important to look for any hazardous signs that may suggest a change in the rip current, like shore or wave breaks, and be aware of safe places to enter and exit the water.  

5. Look, but don’t touch the sea critters. 

The Hawaiian Islands thrive with sea life, and is home to countless marine creatures like turtles and reefs. It’s critical we protect them by keeping them safe: Look, but don’t touch.

Sea + land critters may be cute, but please don’t try to pick them up for an Instagram photo or for any reason. Marine animals like monk seals are amazing to admire from afar. Getting too close or attempting to touch a creature is not only unkind to disturbing them and their homes, but it is also illegal in Hawaii.  

What malama means & why it matters to Alaska employees:


Alaska PIA Leaders Lucy, Jill and Lindsay.

Throughout September as part of Native Hawaiian History Month, Alaska’s Pacific Islander Alliance (P.I.A.) employee resource group hosted & supported weekly sessions about Hawaiian culture, history, music & dance, language, the land and more. Attendees walked away from the series with a deeper understanding not just of what malama means, but why it matters.  

When I think about what it means to malama Hawaii, I think of the warm embrace and unconditional aloha I receive when I am home. It’s the reason why we care, protect, serve, respect one another, and our aina. It’s that value of kindness that encompasses all. We have been in this restoration period in Hawaii where the earth’s preservation and natural resources are extremely important to us. When we care for our aina and its creatures, it will take care of us. Conveying this message through education and community involvement is a great foundation to awareness. 

– Jill, Pacific Islander Alliance leader 

I think of malama as a rallying call for both visitors and kamaaina (Hawaii native) to be active participants in caring for Hawaii.  I was fortunate to have experiences in Hawaii during my youth that included volunteering at a loi (taro patch), to visiting patients at Shriner’s, to cleaning up around family burial plots at old cemeteries. As an adult now living out of state, the best way I can malama is to share Hawaii’s story by being one of its proud kamaaina voices that lives elsewhere, encouraging us all to treat the places we visit like an extension of our own home. 

– Lucy, Pacific Islander Alliance leader 

To me, malama makes me think of a thriving land that is full of people with gratitude and respect for one another and our space. To care is at the core of who we are as humans and it is a beautiful and essential act that we get to express towards one another.  A lot of what we do in P.I.A. is rooted in malama: hosting events to bring our employees the best training, growth opportunities, and space to feel connected to each other, to the land as we promote positive interaction and insight to how we are culturally connected to our environment and our responsibility to leave a place better than how we found it, and to our communities through volunteering.  

– Lindsay, Pacific Islander Alliance Leader.

Alaska Airlines COO: ‘A mission of mercy and incredible caring.’ How Alaska supported Afghan refugee charter flights.

Left to right are Customer Service Agent (CSA) Aria (interpreter), Flight Attendant Kathleen, Flight Attendant Bev, First Officer John, Flight Attendants Randi, Katherine and Carole, CSA Robin, Charter Operations Don, CSA Reah, Charter Manager Alex, CSA Tatyana, Maintenance Technician Frank and Captain Michael.

Today, I’m writing with gratitude and immense pride to tell you about some truly heroic efforts carried out by our employees and communities.

This is about people coming together in a powerful way and demonstrating the very best of what Alaska is all about: Stepping up when we’re needed, serving our communities, working together as a team, and providing remarkable care for people. This really is an example of Alaska at our very best.

Recently, Alaska Airlines employees answered the call to provide domestic charter assistance to the U.S. government to transport Afghan refugees fleeing their country and seeking safety in ours.

Within a matter of hours of receiving our initial instructions from U.S. Transportation Command, we had employees signing up—flight attendants and pilots, customer service agents, catering coordinators, charter coordinators and a maintenance technician—all wanting to help.

It was a mission of mercy and incredible caring by our employees, who represent the best of who we are at Alaska.

Flight Attendants Kathleen, Katherine, Bev, Randi and Carole. 

Although we cannot provide flight details (per Department of Defense rules for the safety of refugees), I can share that Alaska served proudly.

The aircraft we used for these charter flights was one of our “Honoring Those Who Serve” planes. Distinct in its military livery, the aircraft was greeted upon landing with a full military honor guard. As a veteran, I am truly touched by this.

This is the same aircraft that we use for our Honor Flights – we’ve flown more than 4,000 veterans on more than 80 Honor Flights over the past eight years – to visit the D.C. memorials that are dedicated to those who served, and those who sacrificed their lives.

It’s that same spirit that inspired so many Alaska employees to voluntarily step up to work these flights for the Afghan refugees.

Some of our employees who helped with the recent charter flights.

Here are a few of our crew’s powerful stories from the efforts:

For Captain Kevin, the media images of the evacuation in Kabul were intensely personal. Having served as a C-17 pilot in the military for 20 years, including flying into Afghanistan after 9/11, he had a deep appreciation for the military nature of this operation. “I was thankful to help the Afghan people again and happy to help Alaska support a humanitarian crisis,” said Kevin.

Before Flight Attendant Carole began the trip, her husband went to the dollar store and bought all the stuffed animals and Matchbox cars that he could buy. She said that while the adults onboard were visibly exhausted, the children warmed to the crew quickly and wanted to play—up and down the aisles they went, bouncing in their chairs, running from the lavs delighted and scared by the whooshing flush of the toilets. “We opened up the galley and gave them whatever they wanted. Our catering team did an incredible job seeing that we had treats for the kids and extra items.” Carole said the experience was completely different from anything she had ever done, which is significant as she is Alaska’s #1 seniority flight attendant with 54 years. “It was important that we did all we could to help them,” she said. “I am very proud of our company and crew.”

Flight Attendant Katherine admitted she was a bit trepidatious before the flight. “As a mother I was worried that my heart would just shatter if I saw children traveling without their parents, that I would want to scoop them up and take them home.” But the children were indeed accompanied by their families – some parents and children, some grandparents and grandchildren and several infants. The community relations team had boarded bottles, formula, diapers, wipes and each family with an infant received a packet. They were so appreciative of everything – especially the food, with fresh apples, juice, and hot tea with lots of cream and sugar being favorites. Kaye entertained the younger children showing photos of her kids and her Corgi back home. She and fellow crew members introduced them to M&Ms, which they had never had. “It was incredible. I have so much pride right now for my airline and my country,” said Katherine.

Seattle CSA Aria, who speaks the Afghan Persian language served as an interpreter helping the refugees and being a go-between for the crew. Guests were gracious and kind, thanking crews through the language barrier by putting their hands over their hearts.

First Officer Patrick said, “I was honored to be part of this, and I will hold the memories close forever. They had nothing. No luggage, just hope.” He praised his co-workers. “The flight attendants were absolutely amazing. They handled the cultural differences with grace and respect. They went far and above their regular duties – nothing but admiration and praise for them.”

Although much of the crew was picked on seniority, Captain Michael was just in the right place at the right time. “I was called off reserve and felt very fortunate to have been able to participate and help out in the operation in what is for those people, was an unbelievably life changing event.” He said that seeing the kids being kids onboard made him smile. “Smiles are universal in any language.”

Although we cannot share much more than this, I can say that we plan to be available for more of these charters in the future, if we are needed, and we’ll ask other employees to answer the call.

If you know our company’s history, there are moments when our employees stepped up and cared for those who desperately needed a hand. That started 90 years ago when our founders delivered critical supplies and medicine in The Great Land, and it’s continued through the years, such as the Berlin Air Lift in 1948 and in Operation Magic Carpet to evacuate 49,000 Jews from Yemen in 1949-1950. More recently, you saw it in 2014 with our evacuation flights into Cabo San Lucas to rescue stranded travelers after Hurricane Odile.

You see it every day with our people, in moments big and small. And now we have once again stepped up in a big way for people who need us most, and it will be remembered as another proud chapter in our history here at Alaska Airlines.

Thank you to our employees and community partners who helped in this effort, for their service and dedication, for making all of us proud, and for reminding us how far we can go when we come together.

Sincerely,

Constance von Muehlen


Constance von Muehlen serves as executive vice president and chief operating officer of Alaska Airlines, overseeing the day-to-day operations on the ground and in the air.

A 30-year aviation veteran who received her leadership training flying Black Hawk helicopters as a captain in the U.S. Army, Constance brings a proven track record of safety and operational excellence to the role. With a reputation for valuing people and doing the right thing, she approaches her work emphasizing safety, data analysis and continuous improvement in service to our guests and the frontline employee team.

Constance most recently served as Alaska’s senior vice president of maintenance and engineering, where she led all safety, compliance and operational performance of the airline’s mainline Boeing and Airbus fleet.

She previously served as chief operating officer at Alaska Air Group’s regional carrier Horizon Air from 2018 to 2019. Constance joined Alaska Airlines in 2011, and spent her initial years in various maintenance leadership roles, including as managing director of airframe, engine and component maintenance. Concurrently, she oversaw the Virgin America technical operations team, and was responsible for all aspects of Airbus fleet maintenance.

Before joining Alaska, Constance spent 20 years in aviation maintenance, time at Pratt and Whitney Canada, and as director of airframe maintenance at Air Canada.

Constance began her career as an aviation officer in the U.S. Army, flying helicopters and leading flight operations throughout the world. She holds an FAA Commercial Instrument Helicopter Pilot’s License, graduated with a Bachelor’s degree from Johns Hopkins University and is a certified Six Sigma Black Belt. Most recently, Constance graduated from the Executive MBA program at the Foster School of Business at the University of Washington. Constance serves on the FAA’s Women in Aviation advisory board as well as on the San Jose Public Library Foundation board.

A speedy way to save time & skip stress through airport security at SEA is here to stay

Learn more about SEA Spot Saver.

We’ve got good news about a new way to save time at Sea-Tac International Airport that we first told you about this past spring. SEA Spot Saver allows Alaska Airlines guests flying out of Seattle to make online appointments to get through general screening security checkpoints faster. It has been such a hit with flyers, it’s now a permanent fixture.

From early May (when the pilot program began) through the end of August, more than 125,000 Alaska guests took advantage of SEA Spot Saver on their departing flights from Sea-Tac. Interesting tidbit: The most reservations during that time were on Alaska flights between Seattle and Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Columbus and San Diego.

When we launched the new system with the Port of Seattle, our easy-to-use reservation process proved to be so popular we’ve now extended how far out you can book an appointment – from 24 hours before departure to 72 hours.

Here are a few comments we received from guests who used the program:

“I have artificial hips and knees that are titanium. I am always a nervous wreck. This service was comforting to me and the staff was very helpful. It was very organized as well. Thank you…will always use this when available.”

“I have an unvaccinated child, under 12. I am so nervous about flying with her. This service eased my mind. I’d love to use it again for our flight in October!”

“I wish all airports would use this system. I didn’t have to leave for the airport nearly as early as I would have if I didn’t have a security checkpoint appointment.” 

“We’re thrilled so many of our guests are giving SEA Spot Saver great reviews and embracing like we are, new innovations and ideas to make traveling more convenient and less stressful,” said Charu Jain, Alaska’s senior vice president of merchandising and innovation. “Anything we can do to make the airport experience easier is always a win for our guests.”

If you’d like to give SEA Spot Saver a try on your next trip out of Sea-Tac (securing a slot is free and no membership is required), follow these pointers:

  • Sign up online for an appointment. Again, you can do it as early as 72 hours before your departure. Just type in your date of travel, destination, flight number and how many are traveling in your party. 
  • With your entire family listed on your reservation, everyone gets through security together. Super convenient. 
  • You’ll receive an email with a designated 15-minute window of time – say 9-9:15 a.m. – to pass through an expedited security screening line at Checkpoints 3 or 5 on the day you’re flying out.
  • Slots are issued every day between 4 a.m. to noon Pacific Time – the prime morning hours when the airport is busiest.
  • If you have TSA PreCheck or CLEAR, you can still take advantage of SEA Spot Saver, but you won’t receive the benefits of those trusted traveler programs such as not having to remove your shoes and electronics. You’ll need to choose which program you want to use.

Guests can also take advantage of the program once they get to the airport by scanning the QR code on SEA Spot Saver signs around the terminal — the code will take you to the website to sign up.

With hygiene and safety concerns top of mind as many of us return to air travel, we’ve focused additional innovation efforts on making it easy for your journey to be almost entirely touch-free:

  • Use the Alaska mobile app to do it all, from buying a ticket to checking in for your flight to paying for any bags you want to check.
  • At our airport kiosks, you can scan your mobile boarding pass to print bag tags – without even touching the screen.
  • If you need to check in with one of our agents, no need for handing over a paper trail: they can text you your boarding pass and email your receipts.
  • During boarding, your boarding pass can now be scanned from up to six feet away to help maintain physical distance.
  • Onboard your flight, enjoy the food and beverage you pre-ordered and paid for using a credit card stored in your Mileage Plan account. If you purchase a Signature Fruit and Cheese Platter and a glass of wine on the flight, our flight attendants can still use your stored credit card – no need to reach out and hand over a card.

Celebrating 40 years of flying in the Pacific Northwest with Horizon Air

Today is one for the history books! On this day, 40 years ago, Horizon Air, our sister airline in the Pacific Northwest, flew its first flight between Seattle and Yakima, Washington. 

If you’re from the PNW there’s a strong chance you’ve flown with Horizon. They’re the regional airline for Alaska Airlines and help connect our guests in the West with the world. 

“Horizon connects us all to the Pacific Northwest’s incredible outdoor communities and amazing small cities and enables our connection to the country and world. Horizon Air employees make travel feel personal and bring incredible heart and care to every guest,” said Ben Minicucci, Alaska CEO. 

Meet Travion Smith, a ground service agent in Seattle who stays “grounded” through kindness and awareness. Read more

Did you know? 

  • Horizon flies to more than 50 destinations in our route network. 
  • First airline to serve Starbucks coffee in the sky.   
  • Are always looking for great new team members. Check out current job openings
  • Known for delivering performance with excellence and developing industry leading innovations to create safe, incomparable flying experiences. 
  • Flies 32 Bombardier Q400 aircraft—perfectly suited for serving smaller communities in the PNW—and 30 Embraer E175 aircraft.  
  • Well known for offering FREE beer + wine to guests 21 years young on Q400 flights!  

To commemorate Horizon’s momentous day, a special flight will fly the same route that started it all on Sept 1, 1981. This time, it will be flown on Horizon’s “Meatball” plane, a custom-painted retro-themed aircraft, which will fly some of its beloved employees and guests from Seattle to Yakima. 

“We’re flying our meatball livery on the same route Horizon flew 40 years ago,” said Capt. Perry Solmonson, 40th Anniversary Committee Chair. “This is a huge milestone for us and this anniversary flight recognizes not only the hard and successful work accomplished to date, but also celebrate our up-and-coming team members of the future.” 

40 years of history 

Founded in 1981 by entrepreneur Milt Kuolt and a group of venture capitalists in Seattle, Horizon had fewer than 100 employees at that time and operated a fleet of two F-27 propjets. 

Kuolt believed that every guest deserved more than just a ride from point A to B, which turned into the superior service that Horizon is still known for today. 

“Service began with complimentary wine then blossomed into other little but much-appreciated amenities such as free newspapers handed out at the gate, complimentary coffee, and baskets on board filled with munching snacks that included all kinds of goodies,” wrote Robert J. Serling in the chapter on Horizon Air in the book, Character & Characters: The Spirit of Alaska Airlines. 

The service created a culture, a way of life and a state of mind that was “firmly embedded in the work ethic and attitude of every Horizon employee,” wrote Serling. 

Today, Horizon has more than 3,500 employees and operates a fleet of 62 aircraft. 

Reaching 40 years is a huge milestone. Despite the ups and downs of the industry, it’s been the people of Horizon who have carried the company forward. Our 40th anniversary is all about our people. 

First Officer Perry Solmonson waves from the cockpit.

“What I love most about Horizon is our family unit. I have never seen a group of people come together more for the good of a company or each other as I have witnesses during my time with QX. The commitment to our values, the love and respect we show each other and the service to our guests across all work groups is unmatched. I look forward to seeing my colleagues who I consider extended family.” – Natalie Razor, Flight Attendant. SEA

“I love the opportunities to travel around the world on behalf of Horizon Air. I love the opportunities I’ve had to mentor the next generations of Maintenance Technicians. I love the opportunities to travel through the system and assist in new station openings. I love the dynamics of the business, always learning the new aircraft, working through the highs and lows, (9-11, the pandemic). Raising my family.” – Willard Clark, lead technician, GEG

“Being a part of the Horizon family is exactly that. Like any family, we have our ups and downs, highs and lows. We support our Horizon family members and help each other overcome our problems. Some say you can’t pick your family; Horizon is the exception.” – Bill Bowling, Q400 Captain, PDX 

“Growing up in the tiny town of Connell, WA; Horizon Air was the airline I trusted to get me to the nearest major airport. It is always the airline I flew on my voyage outside of home and back to my home. Now I am living in Seattle and Horizon still connects me to my parents in my hometown that I love flying to! I am proud to be part of the airline that keeps us connected through the years. #PSC” – Jaime Chavez, passenger service agent, SEA

“I love the loyalty and dedication the employees have and flying with a regional airline I see that same loyalty with our customers. In the short 10 months I have already seen several of our elites on a regular basis and it feels good to be able to build that relationship with them.” – Catherine Alder, Flight Attendant, PDX  

New San Francisco Lounge celebrates local flavor and flair

Photos by Ingrid Barrentine.

Sip and savor your way through the iconic flavors of San Francisco at our newest Alaska Lounge, opening Aug. 31 at San Francisco International Airport (SFO). 

Our lounge, conveniently located in Terminal 2 just past security, offers more than 9,000 square feet of relaxing space where guests can enjoy classic bites like San Francisco sourdough bread and a pint of the city’s famed Anchor Brewing Crisp Pilsner while taking in art inspired by the Bay Area. The lounge is a complete renovation of the former American Airlines Admirals Club and will be open 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. 

SFO is the second-largest lounge in our network and has some fun features including: 

  • Trained baristas who will serve Starbucks coffee. 
  • A sourdough cart and candy bar with delicious bites.
  • California beers and wines for smooth sips.
  • Local art from artists in the Bay Area to brighten your day.
  • Room for kids to play, inspired by the San Francisco Giants. 

“We’re thrilled to give our guests a place to work, relax, unwind and enjoy some of the best of what the Golden City has to offer when they travel through SFO on Alaska or a oneworld partner,” says Sangita Woerner, senior vice president of marketing and guest experience at Alaska Airlines. 

The Sourdough Cart

Sourdough bread – a part of San Francisco’s food scene since Gold Rush days – will be the highlight of our vintage-style cart featuring local bakeries like Acme Bread Company. Acme is known for its San Francisco Ferry Building location and the Bay Area restaurants it supplies, including Berkeley’s celebrated Chez Panisse. Available at lunch and dinner meal times, the sourdough cart will also offer a variety of sweet and savory toppings, such as ricotta with figs and honey, and burrata with pesto.

The Candy Bar

Just past the Lounge reception desk, a nook beckons with jars of jewel-toned Jelly Belly jelly beans and sweet squares of Ghirardelli chocolate. Ghirardelli’s roots in San Francisco stretch back to 1849, and Jelly Belly candies have called Northern California home for more than three decades.

Guests can also seek their sweet fortunes in custom travel-themed cookies from Oakland’s Fortune Cookie Factory, a third-generation family business that has been baking fortune cookies in the Bay Area for more than 60 years.

California beers and wines

Unwind with a taste of one of Northern California’s finest brews; along with Anchor Brewing, we’ll be pouring Lagunitas IPA, Calicraft Brewing’s Tiki Time tropical wheat ale and Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. We’ll also offer a rotating selection of California wines, and our bartenders will mix up a new craft cocktail each month.

Guests can also enjoy an all-day buffet featuring steel-cut oatmeal, fresh salads and hearty soups – along with our famous pancake printer

Art with a purpose

In addition to art by local artists sourced by San Francisco’s Minted, our new Lounge will showcase a piece called “Offshore” by American painter and printmaker Anne Neely, who is inspired by Alaska’s commitment to reduce our climate impact. “The artist saw the efforts we have been making in sustainability, and she gifted the art to support those efforts and add to the conversation,” says Jordan Womack, Alaska Lounge product manager.

Fans will have a ball

Young San Francisco Giants fans can cheer for the home team in the play area featuring baseball-themed games and art celebrating mascot Lou Seal.

The Alaska Lounge value

Alaska Lounge membership costs nearly 60 percent less than other airline lounge programs. “Hands down, Alaska offers the single best value of any airport lounge membership in the country,” Woerner says. “Our eight lounges redefine the guest experience and offer a calm oasis for every type of traveler.” 

And like SFO, each lounge lets guests explore its region through its unique food and drinks. For example, here are some of the local beers featured:

Anchorage (ANC): Alaskan Amber, King Street Brewing

Los Angeles (LAX): Boomtown IPA

New York (JFK): Greenport IPA, Bronx Brewery Summer Ale

Portland (PDX): Deschutes Mirror Pond

Seattle (SEA): Airways Preflight Pilsner, Georgetown Bodhizafa IPA

How to visit Alaska Lounges

Guests can visit Alaska Lounges by becoming a lounge member, flying First Class with us or purchasing a day pass. Pro tip: Guests can enjoy 50% off a lounge day pass when they pay with their Alaska Airlines Visa Signature® credit card*. 

Giving you more options

Beginning Oct. 1, we’re updating our membership structure to give you more options and flexibility.

We’ll now offer two tiers of lounge memberships:

Alaska Lounge: Members will receive access to all Alaska Lounges when flying on any airline.

Alaska Lounge+: Members will receive access to all Alaska Lounges and an extended network of more than 90 partner airline lounges across the country, including all American Airlines Admirals Clubs.

Pricing will update to the following:

  • Alaska Lounge membership: $450 annually ($350 for Alaska Airlines MVP, MVP Gold and MVP Gold 75k members)
  • Alaska Lounge+ membership: $600 annually ($500 for Alaska Airlines MVP, MVP Gold and MVP Gold 75k members)
  • New Lounge membership enrollments and renewals made before Alaska’s two-tier structure goes into effect in October will be grandfathered into an Alaska Lounge+ membership for the duration of the membership period.

Keep up with our Lounges on alaskaair.com.

Pre-game the Alaska way with all things PRE

Whether you’re catching a flight or the tail end of Russell Wilson’s PRE-season, we’ve got you covered on all things PRE at Alaska.   

PRE-check yourself through TSA  

We want to make sure you arrive at your gate with plenty of time to catch your flight, despite the extra busy airports. Consider joining trusted traveler programs like TSA Pre-Check®, Global Entry, Nexus, or SENTRI. Membership in these programs gives you access to the faster security screening lanes at participating airports, where you can keep on your shoes, belts, or light jackets and your laptop can stay in your carry-on. 

PRE-order your Signature Fruit & Cheese Platter  

Enjoy ingredients inspired by the West Coast, from snacks to freshly prepared meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  Pre-order your favorites ahead of your trip (from 2 weeks to 20 hours prior to your flight) on our website or mobile app. 

A limited number of fruit & cheese platters are available by pre-order only on trips 1,100+ miles.  

Pre-mium Class gives you more space.  

Treat yourself to 4 inches more legroom with our Premium Class Cabin seats. And, enjoy complimentary beer, wine and cocktails for those 21+!  Premium also means you can board early, access overhead bin space before space fills up and be among the first to deplane when you arrive to your destination. 

Preprint bag tags and check your bags. 

You’ll likely make it through the security line even quicker by reducing your carry-on items. We recommend checking your bags instead. Brush up on our checked baggage policy and then print your own bag tags at home to save even more time at the airport. 

Pre-pack the essentials  

Masks are still required, per federal law. So, please remember to pack your mask! In case you forget yours or lose it, don’t worry we’ve got you covered—simply ask us for a mask.  

Travelers wearing a mask have a .003% or NEAR-ZERO CHANCE of being exposed to the virus, even on a full aircraft (according to a Department of Defense study).

Pre-view the most movies in the sky* – for free. 

Snuggle into your seat and grab some popcorn – we’re bringing the movie theater to you. Choose from over 500 free movies and browse 550+ episodes of more than 80 TV series in our entertainment library. 

Most aircraft feature our streaming entertainment system Alaska Beyond Entertainment, letting you watch free movies and TV shows on your own device. 

Pre-boarding for anyone who needs a little more time 

Alaska Airlines offers pre-boarding for anyone with disabilities who may need help or more time to board, families with children under the age of two. And, active members of the military. 

Photo from 2015 Honor Flight.

Pre-tty hot deals 

Take advantage of our hottest fares to some of your favorite Alaska Airlines destinations. See our flight deals happening now. 

PREpare for takeoff 

Whether it’s a business trip or the ultimate vacation, when you fly with us, you’ll get Next-Level Care and the best experience in the air. Here are 4 ways to travel with us

Want to see Russ in action on his home turf? Book your next flight to Seattle on alaskaair.com. 

Boeing and Alaska test technology to make flying safer and greener

 

One of the paths in our roadmap to net zero by 2040 is fleet renewal and continuing to test and adopt technology to further improve our fleet’s efficiency. This partnership with Boeing is one way our company invests in research and development and the future of aviation. If these technologies prove particularly valuable, we’ll advocate for those being on future aircraft.

This month, 250 students stopped by our Anchorage hangar to explore the latest technology Boeing and Alaska are testing to make aviation safer and more eco-friendly.

Planemakers like Boeing must test absolutely every thing on a plane before guests ever step on board. The students, part of Alaska’s Native Science and Engineering Program (ANSEP), learned all about our industry and Boeing’s latest developments that will help us reach net zero carbon emissions by 2040.

In its eighth iteration, Boeing and its partners, including the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), using one of our 737-9 aircraft before it is delivered to us in early 2022. Test flights began in late June, flying around the Pacific Northwest, Alaska, California and Montana to test out various technologies.

 

What’s the newest tech?

Low-profile anti-collision light an aircraft body needs to be as streamlined as possible – anything sticking out creates drag and reduces efficiency. Anti-collision lights currently are located on the top and bottom of the fuselage and stick out so they can be easily seen.

A low-profile light is being tested with a new lens so the light doesn’t stick out as far but can still be easily seen. This design also moves the electronics from outside to inside the aircraft, improving the light’s reliability.

Recycled Carbon Fiber Sidewalls – Boeing is testing replacing conventional cabin wall insulation with composite waste material from the construction of a Boeing 777X wing to make sidewalls stronger and lighter. The panels will be tested to ensure they’re as quiet as the ones in service today.

NOAA Greenhouse Gas Measurement – NOAA uses data from commercial airplanes – such as wind and temperature – to improve climate modeling and long-term forecasting.

For better long-term climate modeling, they need to measure the concentrations of existing greenhouse gases (carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, methane, water vapor). Our airplane is helping NOAA determine the best placement on the airplane for air sampling probes, and the agency hopes to add the technology across fleets of commercial plans to crowdsource data in real-time worldwide.

Non-halon fire suppressant – Halon 1301 is an ozone layer-depleting agent that has not been in production in the U.S. since 1994 (and the only places it’s still used is for aviation fire suppression, the oil industry and in military applications). A new fire extinguishing agent, CF3i, is being tested that would be significantly less damaging to the ozone layer.

Additional technologies include wireless sensors and drone inspections to improve maintenance efficiency, new technologies on the flight deck to enhance safety and fly more efficiently and advanced engine nacelle treatments to reduce community noise.

Fun facts:

  • The split wingtips you see on our new 737-9 and other new Boeing aircraft came from a prior ecoDemonstrator aircraft test and increase fuel efficiency by 2%.
  • More than one-third of the technologies tested have advanced into Boeing’s products and services.
  • The ecoDemonstrator plane flies mainly using a 30-50% blend of sustainable aviation fuel and Jet A fuel.
  • There’s a fun surprise on the right side of the aircraft’s design. Can you spot what it is?

Learn more about the ecoDemonstrator.

Flying on an airplane is safer than ‘grocery shopping or eating out,’ says experts

Travelers wearing a mask have a .003% or NEAR-ZERO CHANCE of being exposed to the virus, even on a full aircraft (according to a Department of Defense study).

While doing anything besides staying in your bubble assumes a level of risk, we believe it’s safe to fly—and experts agree. 

According to research, airplanes are the safest indoor environments globally, and flying remains relatively low risk. We love to hear it and hope you enjoy flying with us. 

Air travel is the safest form of transportation thanks to… 

Hospital-grade air filtration 

HEPA filters remove 99.9% of airborne particles, including viruses like COVID-19 and other variants. 

Clean air exchange 

Outside and filtered air in the cabin is exchanged every 2–3 minutes, giving better ventilation than grocery stores and office buildings. 

Top-down air flow 

Air flows from the ceiling to the bottom of your seat, instead of front to back, minimizing particle movement throughout the cabin and reducing contact other guests. 

Wearing Masks — even if you are fully vaccinated. 

Per federal law: A face mask or covering is required through the airport and on board — even if you are fully vaccinated.  

Getting vaccinated — but it is not required. 

Getting fully vaccinated has proven to be the best way to protect yourself & others from the coronavirus and the many variants which continue to lurk around right now. So, while it is not a requirement to fly, we highly encourage you to do so.  

With over 100 ways to keep you safe, our Next-Level Care meets hospital-grade health safety measures and recommendations from experts, including researchers at Harvard University’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health, who found a “layered approach” lowers the spread of viruses on planes. 

“This layered approach, with ventilation gate-to-gate, reduces the risk of SARS-CoV-2 transmission onboard aircraft below that of other routine activities during the pandemic, such as grocery shopping or eating out,” the report says.  

Related:  

Book your next flight with us at alaskaair.com. Mask up. Let’s go! 

Seattle Kraken team takes flight & Alaska Airlines Atrium is on track for season opener

As a founding partner of the Seattle Kraken, we’re excited to see the official roster getting more legendary by the day! And, soon to be the Alaska Atrium to welcome fans to their home arena!

All eyes were on Seattle last week while the Kraken revealed their inaugural roster for the 2021-22 NHL season—and from here, the team is looking fly! 

Alaska was onsite at Gas Works Park with a photobooth and cozy giveaways.

As the official airline of the Kraken, we can’t wait to welcome our community and guests to home games via Alaska Airlines’ Atrium, which will serve as the main entrance for all events at the Climate Pledge Arena. 

The atrium will be a 36,000 square-foot space on the south side of the building and feature stories and images reflecting the Pacific Northwest and the travel opportunities within our region and across the globe. 

“With our headquarters in Seattle, we love giving back to our hometown and connecting Seattle to the world,” says Sangita Woerner, VP of Marketing. “This partnership is no exception as we’ll work closely with the Kraken to create a variety of initiatives that benefit our community, beyond events at the Climate Pledge Arena.” 

The main entrance of the Climate Pledge Arena will be named the Alaska Airlines Atrium.

Welcome to Seattle 

To celebrate the Seattle Kraken drafting new players, we gave away prizes every “period” (20 mins) during a social happy hour on Twitter. The lucky winners who tweeted #AlaskaAirHockey scored air travel, Kraken game tickets and a co-branded air hockey table. 

We can’t wait to cheer on the home team and share some special surprises we have up our wings this season. Follow @alaskaair for your chance to score big in the future!  

Here are some special moments from the expansion draft at Gas Works Park: 

Get to know the newest players in Seattle’s lineup and mark your calendars because the Kraken season schedule is ready for takeoff! 
Looking for your photo? See FULL GALLERY

Continue reading “Seattle Kraken team takes flight & Alaska Airlines Atrium is on track for season opener”

The ultimate guide to visit Boise, Idaho

Photos by Ingrid Barrentine

As the airline with the most flights to & from BOI, we know all the gems you have to see in Boise.

The city is a perfect blend of outdoor adventure, relaxation and nonstop fun. No matter where you go in Idaho, you’re bound to spot stunning mountain peaks, pristine lakes and enjoy fishing, white water rafting, horseback riding, backpacking or unwind with a nice glass of red wine riverside.

And, while some things have changed, the friendly, helpful and welcoming community of Boise has not. Join us on the journey to get there and know it’s safe with our Next-Level Care.

Here’s what you have to do in Boise:

Savor the flavors  

Idaho’s state fruit—Huckleberries—can be found in pastries, milkshakes, syrups and other delightful creations.   

Fry sauce, a combination of ketchup and mayonnaise, is also a must-try. Meat-eaters won’t want to miss out on Idaho’s deep-fried finger steak, which happens to pair perfectly with fry sauce (it’s not just for fries!).  

Taste all the flavors at Stella’s Ice Cream.

Seal the trip with a tour of the Capitol  

Did you know Idaho is the only state with a state seal designed by a woman? Painter and designer Emma Edwards Green’s submission, featuring Lady Justice, a miner and Idaho’s natural resources, was selected for the prestigious placement in 1891. Tour the state capitol building in Boise to learn more about the state seal and the state’s rich history.  

Hit the trails  

Idaho’s attractive landscapes stretch nearly miles from the Nevada-Idaho state line to the Idaho Panhandle at the Canadian border. In between, you will find a wonderland of forests, crystal-clear mountain lakes, cascading rivers, rugged canyons and desert.   

Freddy’s Stack Rock Trail  

The 5,895-foot, pyramid-shaped Stack Rock is about 30 minutes north of Boise. The views are outstanding, especially looking over the furrowed topography stretching miles and miles to the west. In late March through early May, the canyon is at its best when temperatures are mild and wildflowers add color to the green hillsides.   

Ready, set, raft  

Boise is less than an hour from several rafting opportunities. The Main Payette River, just north of Boise, is an easy half-day trip (about three hours on the water) and perfect for first-timers and seasoned paddlers. All levels will enjoy the approachable Class I and II rapids along this fun, leisurely run between May and September.  Learn more about guided tours, rivers and rafting seasons at raftidaho.org.  

Photo by Angga Indratama on Unsplash

Bike rail-to-trail   

Whether you want to rent a bicycle to tred downtown or venture out, Boise has all the stops. The Boise Greenbelt follows 25 miles of the Boise River, connecting Lucky Peak State Park, downtown Boise and many neighborhoods. The paved trail extends on both sides of the river, winding through numerous city parks and passing by restaurants, wineries, public art and points of interest.

Sip back, relax  

If you’re—of age—and want to savor Idaho’s wine country, start in Boise at Telaya Wine Co., which overlooks the Boise River, or check out the chic Coiled Wine Bar in downtown Boise for some fine reds & roses. Throughout the state, there are a plethora of wineries and tasting rooms to choose from. Pro tip: Wine flies free on Alaska; learn more

Croquetas & Chardonnay make a great pair, via the Basque Market, another great spot!

Make some noise!

We’re offering 20% off your next trip when you book by 7/29. Restrictions apply. Book now: https://bit.ly/3f1BV9x.

Do’s & don’ts when returning to air travel

All of us at Alaska are here to bring you the best care in the air—and answer your burning travel questions. Check out these do’s & dont’s so you can travel well and plan those long-awaited trips:

Do: Wear a Mask.

We know wearing a mask for long period of time is not ideal for most people, but per our policy and federal requirements, all travelers (vaccinated or not) must wear a face mask during travel, including while in airports, boarding and deplaning and your entire flight. 

Don’t be the person who’s handed a yellow card for not complying with our mask policy. The card (our formal notice) is a warning to any guest who flagrantly refuses to wear a mask on board our aircraft. Upon review, we could ban guests who refuse to comply with our mask policy for a period of time.

Exceptions apply only to children under the age of two (in alignment with CDC age guidelines). Read more about the FAA’s mask requirement.

Do: Consider getting vaxxed.

Though it’s not a travel requirement, if you’re able to get vaccinated for COVID-19, we highly encourage you to do so. Before you fly with us, you will be asked to fill out a health agreement, which simply confirms you will wear a face covering on board/at the airport and that you have not shown any COVID symptoms in the past 72 hours and have not been in proximity to someone who has tested positive.

Don’t miss out on traveling! We have your safety covered every step of the way with our Next-Level Care—from booking and boarding to day-of travel and beyond. 

Do: Sit back & relax.

While it seems like sitting on a plane with other people could be risky, analysis of air travel shows viruses don’t spread easily on aircraft because of a number of things. One study concluded people wearing masks have a near zero (0.003%) chance of contracting COVID-19—even while seated next to someone.

You’re covered by:

  • High air exchange rates (fresh air every 2-3 min in the cabin)
  • HEPA filtration
  • Forward faced seating
  • High-back seats
  • Mask-wearing *this one is SUPER important*
  • Enhanced cleaning
  • Contactless features (pre order meals, mobile boarding pass)
  • Complimentary sanitizer

Do: Pre-order meals and enjoy snacks/drinks onboard.

More food and beverage options are now available on board! Snack on favorites like the Signature Fruit & Cheese Platter or try our new menu items via pre-order on most flights over two hours. For guests in First Class, delicious hot meals are back on coast-to-coast and Hawaiʻi flights, plus Boxed Water to quench any thirst.  

Don’t forget to pre-order your meal (if applicable) 20 hours before your flight!

Do: Get COVID-tested from trusted partners if necessary.

Some destinations, including Hawaii and Canada, have special travel requirements in place that require visitors/residents to have negative COVID-19 test results taken no more than 72 hours before travel, or they’ll need to comply with a 10-day self-quarantine. Be sure to schedule your test early, as appointments fill up in advance and use a trusted testing partner

Don’t wait until the last minute to get tested and be sure to use a trusted testing partner!

Do: Avoid travel if you’re not feeling healthy.

For your safety and for the safety of others around you, guests who have exhibited COVID-19 symptoms 72 hours before their flight or who have been in close proximity to someone who has tested positive are not allowed to fly with us. This is for the safety of all guests and employees.

Don’t fly if you’re not feeling well. 

Do: Pack your bag(s) & a little grace.

When traveling with us, you’re allowed to bring one carry-on bag plus one personal item, such as a purse, briefcase or laptop computer. At least one of the items should be stowed under the seat in front of you, and you’ll also need to be able to lift your own bag into the overhead bin. You can also check luggage at the airport.

PRO TIP: You’ll likely save time checking bags if you print your own bag tags at home.

While we pride ourselves on our 20-min bag guarantee for all our guests and checked bag perks for our Mileage Plan members, most airports are experiencing higher travel volumes right now. In the instance your bags don’t show within 20 minutes, please reach out to us at our baggage office within 2 hours of your flight’s arrival or speak to a nearby customer service agent at the airport.

Don’t exceed our bag size/weight limits

Do: Enjoy the fresh air.

Our cabin air is clean and safe. We have one of the newest fleets in the country which means our planes have the latest air filtration technology. Our planes are equipped with two hospital-grade HEPA filters that remove 99.95% of airborne particulates. Every 2-3 minutes there is a full exchange of cabin air with outside and HEPA-filtered air and 100% fresh air every 6 minutes. Learn more.

Don’t keep your air vents above your seat closed.

Do: Know high-touch surface areas have been cleaned.

We’ve took cleaning to the next level. Alaska’s enhanced aircraft cleaning procedures were developed/validated with infectious diseases experts at UW Medicine and exceed CDC cleaning guidelines. Between every flight, we’re using high-grade EPA disinfectants and electrostatic disinfectant sprayers to sanitize the most critical areas (overhead bins, armrests, tray tables, seatbelts, lavatories, etc).

At the airport, we’re working closely with airport services to ensure the highest level of cleanliness. We’ve instituted a cleaning program for the check-in lobby counters, kiosks and gate counters where the surfaces are wiped down with a disinfectant more frequently.

Don’t excessively wipe the leather seat with your own cleaning wipe, the leather dye color may come off. This doesn’t mean it’s dirty, it’s the active ingredient that is causing the color to come off on the wipe.

Do: Travel mindfully.

Wherever you’re planning to go, it’s important to protect yourself & others by wearing a mask, avoiding large crowds and washing your hands often. We encourage everyone to be kind and respectful to those helping get you from point A to point B. 

Don’t be unruly with other guests or our employees. Remember we’re all doing our best to make travel as safe, easy-going and accessible as possible. Please stick to travel guidelines and always practice being kind and considerate to the people around you. 

We’re all in this together and can’t wait to travel with you!

Book now at alaskaair.com. Mask up. Let’s go!