Brendan Dorsey shares leaked details of an announcement expected today by Alaska Airlines about the elite benefits that are coming for travel on Virgin America.
Virgin America will ultimately adopt the Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan program, but in the meantime they’re moving the two airlines and programs gradually closer together. You can link Virgin and Alaska accounts, move points, and Virgin America elites get Alaska Airlines status.
Alaska Airlines elites traveling on Virgin America have thus far received only priority check-in and boarding. However what they’re phasing in appears to be as follows:
Coming Spring 2017:
2 free checked bags
Coming Late Summer 2017:
Complimentary access to preferred Main Cabin seating
Eligibility for Main Cabin select upgrades
An advance purchase window to buy first-class upgrades
It’s a move towards having Alaska elites treated similarly to Virgin elites on Virgin metal. Virgin does not offer complimentary upgrades to its own elites. Eventually the paid upgrade model for elites will presumably go away once Virgin America Elevate folds into Mileage Plan.
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