What is Alaska miles? Why do I value it more than Krisflyer? How to accumulate them? How to use them?

Photo: The Kachet Life

Photo: The Kachet Life

What is Alaska miles?

Alaska Airlines is an airline based in, you guessed it, Alaska, USA. Its Frequent Flyer Program is called Mileage Plan. Alaska Airlines is not a part of any alliance but it is partners with some of the best airlines in the world like Emirates, Singapore Airlines & Cathay Pacific. These airlines are so well-spread out all over the globe that you can fly to almost any region you can think of by redeeming your Alaska miles on any of these partners.

Alaska Airlines’ Partners

Alaska Airlines’ Partners

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What does it mean to be partners with other airlines?

Being partners means:

  1. You can credit your flights to Alaska Airlines while flying with any of its partners.

  2. You can redeem your Alaska miles for seats in any of its partners.

Why do I value Alaska miles 30% more than Singapore Airlines’ Krisflyer?

If you are new to this, you’d probably be wondering, “why don’t I just credit all my flights to Singapore Airlines? I can’t even transfer my Singapore credit card miles to Alaska Airlines anyway”. I value Alaska miles at US$0.016 each, substantially more that Krisflyer miles at $0.017.

Here’s why:

  1. Alaska miles do not expire as long as you earn or redeem at least 1 mile within a 2 years period. This is extremely easy to achieve. You can simply donate your miles for a worthy cause or shop for something small at Mileage Plan Shopping Portal. In comparison, Singapore Airlines’ Krisflyer miles expire after 3 years. People often end up with thousands of miles that is too little to be able to redeem for anything and these ‘orphan’ miles just disappear after its expiration date.

  2. Crediting your flights to Alaska, often give you more miles than with other programs. For example, flying Business with fare class ‘D’ on Singapore Airlines would give me 200% of the the distance covered in miles if I credit the flight to Alaska. If I credit that same flight to Singapore Airlines’ Krisflyer, I would only receive 125%. Yes, I credit all my Singapore Airlines flights to Alaska.

  3. It is more rewarding to be loyal to Alaska. By crediting a number of partner flights to Alaska this year, I achieved Gold membership level, without ever flying on Alaska Airlines. This means that I would receive a whopping 300% of the miles in point number 2! In contrast, being a Gold member with Singapore Airlines will still give me a measly 125%. Sad, isn’t it?

  4. You need less Alaska miles to redeem for most destinations. I wrote an article on which Frequent Flyer miles I use for each region. For example, redeeming round trip Business Class from Singapore to New York requires 198,000 Krisflyer Miles but only 100,000 Alaska miles!

  5. You get free stopover on your way to your final destination. For example, if you are redeeming your miles for Japan Airlines to USA, you are allowed to spend days, weeks or months in Japan before continuing your journey to USA.

How to accumulate Alaska miles?

I am still waiting the the day we can transfer a Singapore credit card miles to Alaska. Until then, here’s how you can accumulate precious Alaska miles:

  1. Credit your flights to Alaska wherever possible.

  2. Use RocketMiles or Kaligo to book your hotel stays. You’ll get an easy 1,000 miles each by using my referral links.

  3. Shop via Alaska’s Mileage Plan Shopping Portal.

  4. Buy Alaska miles.

  5. Transfer your hotel points to Alaska.

How to redeem Alaska miles?

If you follow Suitesmile on Instagram, you would have seen stories about my First Class flight on Singapore Airlines from Hong Kong to Singapore a couple of days ago. That flight was redeemed using my Alaska miles. To find out how to search and book award flights with Alaska miles, head to this page. Like Singapore Airlines, Alaska does not impose fuel surcharges (except on British Airways) on award bookings.

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5 thoughts on “What is Alaska miles? Why do I value it more than Krisflyer? How to accumulate them? How to use them?”

  1. Hi, I saw on Alaska website, that to get MVP status, a minimum of 2 flights are needed on Alaska Airlines itself. Is this a new requirement?

  2. Fai,
    am sold on Alaska FFP.
    is there any referral from you to sign up their FFP? or any promo for new signups?

    btw, if i am aiming for SIN> LAX.. biz for 2 pax.
    is there a max miles that i can buy?
    is it more worth while to just buy rather than accumulating?

    • Hey,

      There isn’t any referral program right now, but thanks for asking!

      Alaska miles go on sale frequently all year. I expect to see another sale before the end of the year.

      Refer to this link to purchase them and to see historical offer types: https://suitesmile.com/buy-alaska-airlines-mileage-plan-miles-at-a-discount/

      A normal member can buy about 220,000 Alaska miles per year. In general, buy miles only when you have short-term plans to use them.

      Hope that helped!


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