(EXPIRED) Alaska Airlines offering status match to draw disappointed Delta frequent flyers

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If Delta’s elite status changes have you down, Alaska Airlines would like to turn that frown around: Alaska Mileage Plan is offering a very generous elite status match through October 31, 2023 whereby you may even level up if you meet the right set of requirements.

Alaska Airlines Companion Fare

The Deal

  • Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan is offering a status match for Delta elite members. Whether you receive a match or a challenge depends on whether or not you have an Alaska Airlines Visa card (if you don’t, you should consider getting one before you match). The following chart has the full matching path (keep in mind that MVP Gold is oneworld Sapphire and MVP Gold 75K is oneworld Emerald):
  • Direct link to this deal

Key Terms

  • A member may only receive one status match for the lifetime of their account.
  • Offer valid for new status match requests from Delta Air Lines elite status to Alaska Airlines status made via this registration page by October 31, 2023.
  • A status match is only offered to members who have achieved elite status through actual flight miles or segments.
  • Status granted based on credit card activity, transferred points, or any other promotional offer is not eligible for a status match.
  • Gold Guest Upgrades, Lounge Day Passes, and MVP Gold 75K MVP nominations will be available after the member has met the flight requirement during the initial 90-day period for the respective elite status.
  • Members who receive MVP Gold 75K status as part of this offer are not eligible for the 50,000 bonus miles or American Airlines System-Wide Upgrades associated with qualifying for MVP Gold 75K status.
  • Please allow up to 4 weeks for verification and approval of your status match request. You will receive a welcome email once the status match is approved, or you can also check your status in your account at alaskaair.com.
  • Offer valid only for legal residents of the United States and Canada.
  • In order to keep your status after the initial 90-day period, you’ll need to fly the designated number of miles or more on flights marketed by Alaska Airlines and operated by Alaska Airlines, Horizon or SkyWest during that initial 90-day period. Codeshare flights operated by other airlines, flights on Alaska Global Partners, award travel, and bonus miles do not count toward keeping your status. In order to keep MVP status, you must fly 5,000 miles; in order to keep MVP Gold status, you must fly 10,000 miles; and in order to keep MVP Gold 75K status, you must fly 20,000 miles.
  • Members approved for a status match via the above offer that have an open Alaska Airlines Visa credit card by December 31, 2023 will have their matched elite status extended for the 2024 program year (January 1, 2024 through December 31, 2024).
  • Cardholders with a matched status end date of December 31, 2024, will also be awarded one tier higher than their matched status for the 2024 program year. For example, if you are awarded a status match to MVP Gold via the above offer, and your equivalent Delta Gold Medallion status has an end date of December 31, 2024, and you have an open Alaska Airlines Visa credit card as of December 31, 2023, you’ll be upgraded to MVP Gold 75K status starting January 1, 2024 through December 31, 2024, as long as you continue to hold an open Alaska Airlines Visa card through December 31, 2024.
  • For new accounts, please allow 2-3 weeks after card approval for your status to be upgraded to the next tier.
  • See promotion page for full details

Quick Thoughts

This is a very generous match. It looks a little complicated on the surface, but it boils down to this:

  • If you do not have an Alaska Airlines Visa, you will receive a 90-day status challenge whereby you need to earn the following miles to keep your matched status:
    • MVP: 5,000 miles flown on Alaska
    • MVP Gold: 10,000 miles flown on Alaska
    • MVP Gold 75K: 20,000 miles flown on Alaska
  • If you have an Alaska Airlines Visa, you will receive a straight match through the end of 2024 with no flying requirement.
  • If you have an Alaska Airlines Visa and have already qualified for 2024 status, you’ll actually level up in status by matching to a tier higher than you currently have all the way up to MVP Gold 100K for Delta Platinum and above.

As briefly noted above, if you have Delta elite status and this match interests you, it is probably worth getting an Alaska Airlines Visa unless you are very confident that you can meet the required miles on Alaska metal within 90 days. That said, the FAQs indicate that even if you initially match for 90 days and then later get the Alaska Airlines Visa, Alaska will take you out of the 90-day challenge and extend status through the end of 2024, which is really smart on their part.

This is an especially great deal for Delta Platinum elite members who have qualified for status through December 31, 2024 since it provides the opportunity to get top tier Alaska Mileage Plan elite status through the end of 2024.

Keep in mind that Alaska is a member of oneworld alliance. MVP Gold is oneworld Sapphire and MVP Gold 75K is oneworld Emerald. Among the oneworld benefits you would enjoy are access to oneworld business class lounges with Sapphire status and first class lounges with Emerald status (though keep in mind that you’ll only get American Airlines Admirals Club access when flying internationally on a oneworld carrier or on one of AA’s premium transcon routes like JFK, Boston, or Miami to/from Los Angeles or JFK to/from San Francisco or Orange County (SNA); you will not get Admirals Club on other domestic itineraries). You won’t get Alaska Mileage Plan perks like AA systemwide upgrades, bonus miles, or choice benefits that require earning status, but you’ll get things like priority access, additional luggage allowances, and preferred seating on oneworld carriers (including American Airlines on domestic itineraries).

Given that Alaska members still earn miles based on distance flown, it can be a great program to which to credit paid oneworld flights. That is particularly true for some carriers — for instance, paid premium cabins on British Airways earn a lot of Alaska miles. I have sometimes used points at a value of ~1.5cpp to buy a British Airways cash fare for about the same number of points as a business class award ticket and earned a lot of Alaska redeemable miles in the process.

I imagine that those who earned Alaska Mileage Plan elite status the hard way will be displeased with Alaska handing out free status to Delta frequent flyers, but this nonetheless seems like a really smart promotion on Alaska’s part. This both allows Alaska to showcase a key program feature (tickets still earn miles based on distance flown) and encourages customers to get the Alaska Airlines Visa card. It also provides an interesting alternative to the American Airlines Loyalty Points games since this provides an even easier path to elite status for the time being. This seems like a great move on Alaska’s part and I imagine that there will be at least quite a few Delta elites making this switch.

H/T: One Mile at a Time

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