medical-teams-international

By Shaunta Hyde, Managing Director of Community Relations, Alaska Airlines

As we all take time to celebrate the holiday season with friends and family, I wanted to say thank you to our Mileage Plan members who consistently donate their miles to help support the communities we serve. Your generosity, commitment and support for organizations like Angel Flight West, Children’s Hospital, the Make-A-Wish Foundation, and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Foundation and our other charitable partners raised approximately 43 million miles in 2013, and we are well on our way to reaching this goal in 2014. This is just plain amazing!

It is with that spirit in mind that Alaska Airlines is making a donation of one million Mileage Plan miles to Medical Teams International (MTI) on behalf of our frequent fliers as a small way to say thank you and happy holidays.

If you’d like to help, you can make a donation of your own through our Charity Miles program.

MTI provides critical help to people who are suffering all over the world through humanitarian and medical aid. MTI provides medical and dental care, disaster relief and development assistance in many of the world’s most at-risk communities. Just this week, they have teams working to provide mobile dental clinics in Oregon and Washington, a community impact team working in Guatemala and medical and physical therapy teams serving in Haiti.

For 35 years, MTI has responded to disasters around the world—and here at home—by sending teams of volunteer medical professionals and medical supplies to care for the sick and injured. And sustainability is central to MTI’s mission. They mobilize long-term, health promotion initiatives and collaborate with established partners in the communities they serve to ensure their work continues to have impact.

Helping people is what the holidays are all about. That’s why we’re proud to make this gift that will increase the efficiency and expediency of MTI relief teams. One million miles will enable MTI to reduce travel costs and focus the organization’s resources on programs that directly support communities in need, like providing clean drinking water and medical services.

Supporting organizations like MTI, especially on behalf of our Mileage Plan members, is just one of the ways we are giving back to the communities we serve.

Thank you for flying with us and for helping us help those in need.

Happy holidays!

alaska-holiday-punch-cocktail

Flying this week? Try your hand at inflight bartending with our drink cart cocktail recipes and you might even make a friend or two along the way.

Erik Chapman, barman and distiller at Seattle’s Sun Liquor, which produces the premium gin, rum and vodka served onboard Alaska Airlines flights, suggests this make-your-own holiday punch.

“When you say ‘holiday cocktail,’ I immediately think rum and cranberry with ginger,” says Chapman. “And you can top it off with a squeeze of lime.”

Next time you’re onboard, ask for cranberry juice and ginger ale with your Sun Liquor Sun Rum – and don’t forget the lime garnish.

Not in the mood for rum? Chapman offers a gin- (Ginger Sunrise) or vodka-based (Moscow Mule) alternative.

Flying today? Follow these holiday travel tips for a stress-free holiday.

kendalls-gift-seattle-childrens

Sometimes big things do come in small packages. And sometimes, even bigger things come when inspired by the season of giving and a simple idea.

Take for instance the tenacity of 8-year old Kendall Wills, a Fairbanks, Alaska resident who has spent a fair amount of time in Seattle – not by choice but for medical necessities.

Kendall was diagnosed at age four with a kidney disease and has spent a good portion of her young life at Seattle Children’s Hospital. While she has never had to spend the holidays at the hospital, for a number of patients at Seattle Children’s Hospital, it’s just not possible to be home for Christmas. This sobering fact resonated with Kendall.

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gadget-the-elf-airplane-window

This month, Alaska Airlines partnered with Macy’s to help fly Gadget the Elf to the “North Pole” to deliver the world’s longest wish list to Santa, as part of a special campaign for Make-A-Wish. Saturday Gadget flew from Chicago to Anchorage, Alaska on Alaska Airlines on his  way to the North Pole, and shares this blog about his adventures.

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fantasy-flight-alaska-airlines

The skies were clear and the sun was setting Saturday as Alaska Airlines flight 1225 took off, fueled by a force more powerful than jet fuel. The magic of 64 children and Santa’s elves helped propel the Boeing 737 on its annual pilgrimage from Spokane International Airport to the “North Pole.”

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Imagine you’re at dinner in Seattle, enjoying a delicious meal at one of Tom Douglas’ landmark dining spots.  The next morning you’re booked on an Alaska Airlines flight and the idea of feasting on another  would be the perfect end to your Seattle vacation or mark the beginning of your journey to one of the more than 100 destinations Alaska serves.

Travelers can reserve their favorite meals with ease on Alaska’s iOS and Android apps, as well as its mobile website up to 12 hours before their flight and pay when the flight attendant delivers the meal onboard.

menu preorder Alaska launches mobile ordering, letting travelers reserve meals before flights

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Introducing Alaska Beyond

alaska-beyond-flight-experience

By Halle Hutchison, Managing Director of Brand Marketing

I am proud and excited to introduce our new, improved Alaska flight experience: Alaska Beyond.

We share our customers’ love of discovery, and with every flight you take we are thrilled to bring you our latest finds, from indie hit movies direct to your own tablet, laptop or smart phone, to exciting food products sourced locally from the amazing places we fly.

Start exploring at 30,000 feet. Your journey becomes part of the adventure as you watch free entertainment, snack on artisan food and beverages, relax in our custom, leather, power-equipped seats, and enjoy our award-winning service. It’s all part of Alaska Beyond – a new flight experience designed to go above and beyond your expectations.

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foodie-gift-guide

At Alaska, we pride ourselves on knowing our food. Our food and beverage team scours our hometown of Seattle as well as the cities we fly for culinary inspiration, and offers this holiday shopping guide for the food-lover in your life.

We think your out-of-town relatives will be particularly impressed with all the Pacific Northwest has to offer.

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recycled leather bag

Reclaimed leather from replaced airplane seats will fly again as carry-on bags, thanks to a collaboration between Alaska Airlines and an innovative design team.

Alaska’s discarded leather found new life in the hands of Mariclaro, which makes bags and accessories from sustainable materials.

Bags made from Alaska Airlines leather: The Atlas Collection

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make-and-takes-at-disneyland

By Marie LeBaron, Make and Takes

Marie LeBaron is the editor of Make and Takes, a popular parenting site featuring kids’ crafts, home projects, recipes, parenting tips and more. She lives in Seattle with her family, and loves to travel.

Hey, it’s Marie from Make and Takes here and I’m happy to be sharing a fun idea today for families who love to travel!

We’re a big traveling family ­- we love to explore everywhere we can. You can usually find us at Disneyland, the beach, skiing in Utah or camping in the mountains. Our family is pretty good when it comes to flying. We’ve got our routine down to keep things as calm as possible, as my children’s energy is usually pretty high and excited when we fly. As we get all packed up, I make sure to have a variety of items all ready. Their backpacks are filled with things to play with on the airplane like a book or two, some coloring, and a few small toys that will fit in their pack.

With upcoming holiday travel, I thought it would be fun to come up with a new game for kids to play, a little something extra during the flight with this Airplane Scavenger Hunt printable – designed by Juliann Law. With this scavenger hunt, kids can get excited about arriving at the airport, waiting to board the plane, and flying as they search for all the items on the list!

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