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Is Flying Alaska Airlines Getting Expensive?

Is Flying Alaska Airlines Getting Expensive?

Old Jan 27, 2014, 4:17 pm
  #16  
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Originally Posted by erika33
Been shopping around a lot recently for flights out of Seattle. Longtime loyalty member with Alaska but very disappointed recently. Most of the searches I've done lately have put other airlines ahead of Alaska on both price and flight duration.

Anybody else notice this or is it just me, my dates, and destination.

Honestly considering switching loyalty programs.
It's just you as far as I am concerned, AS is usually matching or beating DL/WN/UA/VX on my routes (SEA based, mostly up and down the coast, a smattering of other routes too though). Haven't noticed OMGWTHBBQCIA prices. That being said, AS is usually one of multiple options on my most common routes, not the only option or one of two, and DL making a big push in SEA (LAS, LAX, and so on) is definitely helping that.
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Old Jan 27, 2014, 8:53 pm
  #17  
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I would say AS is "selectively" more expensive...it's true, on the "bread and butter" west coast flights, they will nearly always match everyone else and their fares are sometimes *very* cheap....like the standard $138 RT PDX-LGB fares or that great $49 one way cyber Monday special between PDX and SFO.

As for flights to/from/within AS, they have little to no competition so that's no big surprise that their fares are quite high in those markets.

It's when you look at the west coast to anywhere else where you see prices that don't quite match up with the others--it's been especially noticeable when you see discount fares to Florida (like FLL or MCO) on AA or DL but no noticeable match from AS and the frequent PHL fare sales on UA seem to rarely get matched by AS. PDX-MCI is frequently in the $125 one way fare range on AA/DL/UA, but the AS fare is typically $25-$50 more expensive than the others (and it still requires a connection just like the others so you can't say you're paying a "premium" for the non-stop).

The other thing I've noticed is that the routing rules can be quite limiting when AS does offer a special fare...for example, they may have $119 one way fares from PDX-BOS but try routing PDX-SEA-BOS (like you could on the other airlines) and the fare really jumps up.

Honestly, I'm a forced transfer from UA so as long as AS doesn't jump on the revenue requirement bandwagon like UA and DL, they can charge a little more if they want, even if it is annoying...
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Old Jan 27, 2014, 10:56 pm
  #18  
 
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Originally Posted by PDXPremier
I would say AS is "selectively" more expensive.

It's when you look at the west coast to anywhere else where you see prices that don't quite match up with the others--it's been especially noticeable when you see discount fares to Florida (like FLL or MCO) on AA or DL but no noticeable match from AS and the frequent PHL fare sales on UA seem to rarely get matched by AS. PDX-MCI is frequently in the $125 one way fare range on AA/DL/UA, but the AS fare is typically $25-$50 more expensive than the others (and it still requires a connection just like the others so you can't say you're paying a "premium" for the non-stop).
Yes and no. I agree that on transcons and midcons AS is almost always higher than AA or DL, and its true that if you are flying from PDX you will need to make a transfer in SEA (except for DCA, ATL etc.)...BUT......I would much rather make a quick transfer in SEA than try to make a connection in ORD, PHL or ATL. In the winter you get snow and ice delays and in the summer you get the T-storm delays. Paying $50 more for an AS direct flight is worth it to me not to have to be stressed the entire trip about if I am going to miss a connection and spend the night a the airport or standing in a huge line at ORD trying to get rebooked.
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Old Jan 28, 2014, 9:39 am
  #19  
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Originally Posted by jsguyrus
standing in a huge line at ORD trying to get rebooked.
thats what the phone is for
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Old Jan 28, 2014, 3:15 pm
  #20  
 
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Originally Posted by LuckyDenver
Getting more expensive? Try flying to, from or within the state of Alaska. Until you've flown in 31E on a red eye for $685 one way ANC-SEA you don't know expensive.
^ ^
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Old Jan 28, 2014, 9:26 pm
  #21  
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Originally Posted by jsguyrus
Yes and no. I agree that on transcons and midcons AS is almost always higher than AA or DL, and its true that if you are flying from PDX you will need to make a transfer in SEA (except for DCA, ATL etc.)...BUT......I would much rather make a quick transfer in SEA than try to make a connection in ORD, PHL or ATL. In the winter you get snow and ice delays and in the summer you get the T-storm delays. Paying $50 more for an AS direct flight is worth it to me not to have to be stressed the entire trip about if I am going to miss a connection and spend the night a the airport or standing in a huge line at ORD trying to get rebooked.
I don't mind having the transfer in SEA (in fact, I would prefer it to the nonstop since you get an extra 500 EQMs each way)....what I don't like is that you end up paying more than just extra taxes if you want to fly PDX-SEA-ATL instead of PDX-ATL....which is odd since many airlines actually charge MORE for the nonstop. You can go PDX-SEA-SFO on UA (and rack up more miles if you want) and it doesn't dramatically change the fare (just a few more bucks in taxes), but if I try to do that same route on AS (which makes MORE sense given the fact that SEA is their major hub), the fare usually jumps (more than just taxes) which leads me to think Alaska's lower fare classes may have different allowable connection cities than the higher fare classes....just a hypothesis
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Old Jan 29, 2014, 1:39 am
  #22  
 
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Originally Posted by PDXPremier
I don't mind having the transfer in SEA (in fact, I would prefer it to the nonstop since you get an extra 500 EQMs each way)....what I don't like is that you end up paying more than just extra taxes if you want to fly PDX-SEA-ATL instead of PDX-ATL....which is odd since many airlines actually charge MORE for the nonstop. You can go PDX-SEA-SFO on UA (and rack up more miles if you want) and it doesn't dramatically change the fare (just a few more bucks in taxes), but if I try to do that same route on AS (which makes MORE sense given the fact that SEA is their major hub), the fare usually jumps (more than just taxes) which leads me to think Alaska's lower fare classes may have different allowable connection cities than the higher fare classes....just a hypothesis
AS started having the "travel must be nonstop" rule on its lower fares in earnest in the last year or two. It started in routes such as SEA-LAX and SEA-LAS where AS already had lots of nonstop flights. Previously, AS had some very generous routing rules even on the less expensive fares.

While PDX-SEA-ATL may have had a higher base fare than PDX-ATL due to the lower fare having a more restrictive routing, it could also be because the lower fare buckets were already sold out on SEA-ATL, which is a very popular flight.
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Old Jan 29, 2014, 10:29 am
  #23  
 
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Originally Posted by ANC
thats what the phone is for
OMG, have you ever tried calling AA during major travel disruptions?
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Old Jan 29, 2014, 10:54 am
  #24  
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Originally Posted by jsguyrus
OMG, have you ever tried calling AA during major travel disruptions?
not during major disruptions, no. Thought you meant just a random cancel. And thats always made me wonder why is it an airline cant touch a ticket booked on say 027 and DL cant do anything if you call them for a DL segment. But if there is a disruption on a DL segment they can dive right into that 027 PNR and start changing stuff and if you contact AS they wont go near it

Last edited by ANC; Jan 29, 2014 at 11:00 am
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Old Jan 29, 2014, 2:37 pm
  #25  
 
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Originally Posted by ANC
not during major disruptions, no. Thought you meant just a random cancel. And thats always made me wonder why is it an airline cant touch a ticket booked on say 027 and DL cant do anything if you call them for a DL segment. But if there is a disruption on a DL segment they can dive right into that 027 PNR and start changing stuff and if you contact AS they wont go near it
You seemed to have answered your own question. The operating airline can modify tickets when there are any flight delays/cancellations on the day of departure. The ticketing airline cannot make such changes unless one of their flights is affected. The one exception I know of is that airlines which can "take control' of tickets for travel on other airlines can switch their travel to their airline. NW/DL did this with its BUMP (Bring Us More Passengers) program.
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Old Jan 29, 2014, 11:19 pm
  #26  
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Thank you OP for posting. . .I thought it was my

imagination with prices. I have to fly SEA-PHX every month for a week. I've been doing it since last July. The prices have gone up tremendously. Tried booking for this next trip and it's coming up $391 one-way! Not sure what's going on here - guess it is because it's winter but it's not spring break plus I'm flexible with my dates as well. Definitely has gone up quite a bit in the last few months.
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Old Jan 30, 2014, 12:26 pm
  #27  
 
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Originally Posted by ANC
not during major disruptions, no. Thought you meant just a random cancel. And thats always made me wonder why is it an airline cant touch a ticket booked on say 027 and DL cant do anything if you call them for a DL segment. But if there is a disruption on a DL segment they can dive right into that 027 PNR and start changing stuff and if you contact AS they wont go near it
I do have to give credit where credit is due. I have had fantastic luck with AS booked tickets on AA metal when there are disruptions etc. I have been getting auto rebooked without taking any action. I just keep an eye on the AS app and low and behold a new flight pops up and I am already rebooked on it. I have even had it pop up with multiple flight options if one of the first options may be a dicey connection.
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Old Feb 1, 2014, 3:41 pm
  #28  
 
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Originally Posted by ldsant
imagination with prices. I have to fly SEA-PHX every month for a week. I've been doing it since last July. The prices have gone up tremendously. Tried booking for this next trip and it's coming up $391 one-way! Not sure what's going on here - guess it is because it's winter but it's not spring break plus I'm flexible with my dates as well. Definitely has gone up quite a bit in the last few months.
Might not be spring break, but consider Spring Training, when that area becomes a desired destination. Supply and demand I would guess
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Old Feb 1, 2014, 10:58 pm
  #29  
 
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Sometimes AS prices out much higher, but I have found that if you can be flexible or book a few weeks out, AS can have some great fares. I'm flying ANC-PDX-SEA-LAX for $150 in late June and the non-stop daytime flight LAX-ANC for $200 5 days later. $350 all in is a great summertime fare IMHO.
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Old Feb 2, 2014, 11:38 am
  #30  
 
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Originally Posted by BOB W
Sometimes AS prices out much higher, but I have found that if you can be flexible or book a few weeks out, AS can have some great fares. I'm flying ANC-PDX-SEA-LAX for $150 in late June and the non-stop daytime flight LAX-ANC for $200 5 days later. $350 all in is a great summertime fare IMHO.
You can thank jetBlue for getting that fare on AS.
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