maui sun lover 100 resized Maui: The island for sun loversWhen someone says Hawaii, you think: laying on the beach all day with a cold beer or cider, jumping in the water for a swim, and then back to the shore for a nap or some light reading. You’re not here for an adventure — you’re here for a vacation.

Well, Maui’s your spot! This island is the perfect balance of Oahu’s energetic pace and Kauai’s quiet serenity. There are plenty of activities for those who want to explore a little, but Maui is the place to relax and enjoy the sun.
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It’s a privilege to be recognized as “Best Airline” any time of year –– but twice in one week? We’re thankful to flyers for choosing Alaska, over and over again.   

Today, Condé Nast Traveler named us “Best U.S. Airline” in their 31st annual 2018 Readers’ Choice Awards. The award is especially significant because it’s based on the feedback of more than 429,000 readers who shared millions of ratings about their recent travel experiences on Alaska Airlines to help create a winning list of favorites.

We’re building on the legacy that Virgin America created by pushing ourselves to be better. Remaining at the top means staying focused on giving you what you want: low fares for better value, including free texting and movies, seatback power, assigned seating, bigger overhead bins, a fresh new West Coast-inspired menu, generous, affordable Premium Class service and our award-winning loyalty program.
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Having spent a summer studying in Ireland many moons ago where I got a taste of authentic Irish hospitality and hearty traditional food, I wasn’t surprised to find that same level of warmth and delicious Irish fare flying Aer Lingus from Seattle to Dublin. As an Alaska Airlines Global Partner letting Mileage Plan members earn miles, Aer Lingus is an ideal choice when flying to Ireland. From the friendly and attentive cabin crew, to the excellent meal and drink options and, above all else, the comfortable and spacious business class seats that convert to lie-flat beds, it’s clear why Aer Lingus is a leader in business class travel.

Here are just a few reasons why I consider Aer Lingus business class to be one of my best air travel experiences to-date.
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Guests enjoy catching up on the latest movies and TV shows when traveling. The popularity of our streaming and tablet entertainment systems is proof.

For a limited time, we’re taking it a step further by creating a movie theater-like experience at 35,000 ft.

We’ve partnered with innovative French company SkyLights to pioneer a new immersive virtual reality (VR) headset. Wearing the headset is comparable to having a personal movie screen in front of you. When paired with noise-cancelling headphones, it’s easy to feel like you’re at the movie theater instead of flying.

From Sept. 23-27, First Class guests onboard 10 flights between Boston and Seattle and Boston and San Diego will have a chance to experience it for themselves and offer feedback.

With this trial, Alaska becomes the first airline in North America to trial virtual reality headsets as an inflight entertainment device.
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Hundreds of middle schoolers screamed in delight last Friday when Kevin Durant’s 6-foot 9-inch frame emerged onstage at Willie Brown Middle School in San Francisco.

In partnership with Alaska Airlines, the San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD) and the San Francisco Police Department (SFPD), Durant’s surprise visit was a collective effort to support the students as they start a new school year, and remind them that back-to-school is an opportunity for new beginnings.

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Mention to most people that you’re traveling to Helsinki, Finland and you’re likely to receive one of three reactions: a blank stare, a confused “Where?” or a puzzled “Why Helsinki?”

It’s true that Helsinki, and Finland in general, is relatively unknown compared to its Nordic neighbors. Mention Sweden to most people, and Swedish meatballs, Abba and Ikea immediately come to mind. Meanwhile, Norway evokes images of Vikings, Norse mythology and impressive fjords. Denmark is likely to elicit at least a passing reference to Danish fairytale writer Hans Christian Andersen. But Finland doesn’t seem to inspire that type of recognition, nor is Helsinki on the average tourist’s radar.

“Helsinki is the quiet capital that people often overlook for the more buzzing neighboring capitals,” says my friend, Nora, a Helsinki resident. I think of how packed the streets of central Stockholm were on my last visit and have to agree.

After a smooth flight on Finnair, an Alaska Airlines Global Partner, I’m ready to explore this hidden gem. Luckily, Helsinki doesn’t disappoint.
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With affordable, nonstop Pittsburgh flights departing Seattle daily, those from the Pacific Northwest can get a feel for why the city is becoming known as one of the country’s most livable.

Pittsburgh has reinvented itself. Gone are the days of factories and pollution; instead, the steel city is a hub of culture and innovation set amidst beautiful hills and rivers.

Whether you’re visiting for a weekend or a week, here’s how to make the most of your trip to Pittsburgh.
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Forget what the playbook says: tailgating starts at the gate.

Seattle football fans flying to the regular season opener in Denver are in for a treat this Friday. Gate C9 at Seattle Tacoma International Airport will be decked out in blue – and a new Russell Wilson plane will be waiting at the end of the jetway.

180903 rwplane 05 resized Dream Big, Fly High: What Russell Wilson’s new plane is all about

The 737-800 features Wilson’s new tagline, “Dream Big. Fly High,” above the aircraft door. Credit: Rochelle Bergstrom

The Boeing 737-800 features Wilson’s tagline, “Dream Big. Fly High.” above the aircraft door. The tagline is a reminder of what our partnership with Seattle’s star quarterback is about – celebrating our hometown football fans and building a strong local community.

“At Alaska, we don’t just care about the laws of physics lifting a plane into the air – though that’s remarkable no matter how old you are or how often you fly. We know are all better off when we can create lift together, across communities,” says Diana Birkett Rakow, Alaska Airlines vice president of external relations. “Our guests and partners, including our Chief Football Officer, inspire us to invest in the next generation – to champion young people, to show kids a path to aviation jobs or whatever their goals and dreams may be.”
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Have you ever been stuck in traffic and thought: “There has got to be a better way to get where I’m going”? Pilots often think the same thing up in the air.

In the hours before takeoff, airline dispatchers specifically plan flights and file flight plans using the best information available at the time. But conditions change: turbulent weather moves in, the airspace suddenly becomes more congested or better flying lanes open up but go undiscovered.

What if pilots – much like drivers – could hop off a busy thoroughfare and jump on a less crowded backroad? Today, it’s not that easy. Soon, it could be.
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By Kachet Jackson-Henderson and Ruthie Ridley

We just came back from a girls’ trip to Los Cabos, and it was an adventure to remember. Both of us had gone before, but this time – as Alaska Airlines’ Weekend Wanderers – we were very intentional about experiencing new things and getting out of our comfort zones.

When we arrived at the Sheraton Grand Los Cabos Hacienda del Mar, we knew we were in for a treat. The AAA Four-Diamond resort has five pools, eight restaurants and entertainment. But, arriving at an amazing resort is just the start of an epic girls’ trip – it’s about the experience and how you spend your time. Here’s how to make the most of your visit to Los Cabos.
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