There has been a lot of news surrounding Alaska Airlines’ Mileage Plan loyalty program.
Last week, Alaska announced there would be some changes with partner bookings. While some of the changes sounded positive, we will see Alaska Airlines change partner award pricing on some routes by the end of the year.
The first change went live Oct. 7. Cathay Pacific redemptions are now bookable online through MilegePlan.
Related: Chasing elite status on Alaska Airlines? A flight to California this fall could help
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As of Friday, Alaska Mileage Plan has added online bookings for Oneworld partner Cathay Pacific. Previously, you needed to call Alaska to book any awards with Cathay so this can definitely be seen as a step in the right direction.
Although this is a good thing for some, others argue that award availability tends to be more difficult to find.
Sweet spots for Cathay Pacific redemptions
Historically, using Alaska miles for Cathay Pacific redemptions has been one of the best uses of Alaska miles.
Some of the best Cathay Pacific redemptions with Alaska miles include:
Between the U.S. and Asia for 50,000 miles in business class and 70,000 miles in first class.
Between the U.S. and Australia or New Zealand for 60,000 miles in business class and 80,000 miles in first class.
Between the U.S. and Africa, India, South Asia or the Middle East for 62,500 miles in business class and 70,000 miles in first class.
Alaska also allows you to add free stopovers on international award tickets — including on one-way tickets. This presents an opportunity to get a second destination for no additional miles, allowing you to create some fantastic itineraries.
For example, this means that you could fly all the way to South Africa with a stopover in Hong Kong for only 70,000 Alaska miles in premium cabins. This is my favorite use of Alaska miles.
But book these awards quickly. As discussed, Alaska will change award pricing by the end of the year on some routes. According to the airline, “partner award levels may vary depending on multiple factors including route, distance, or demand.”
Related: How to earn miles with the Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan program
It’s now possible to redeem Alaska Mileage Plan miles for travel on Cathay Pacific online. Although this is generally a step in the right direction, Alaska has said that there will be more changes moving forward regarding partner award pricing.
Using your Alaska miles for Cathay Pacific redemptions has generally been one of the best uses of the Mileage Plan program.