The battle for Seattle between former marketing partners, Alaska Airlines and Delta, continues to escalate, with separate announcements that both airlines will be adding flights to and from Seattle.
The increased competition should be a plus for travelers, with more choices, lower prices, and more frequent-flyer miles on offer from both carriers.
The subhead of Alaska Airlines’ May 27 news release was clearly directed at Delta’s recent incursions into Alaska’s hometown market and primary hub: “Carrier will fly 280 daily departures out of Seattle — more than any other airline.”
The release goes on to boast that Alaska will increase its Seattle daily flight departures by 11 percent next spring, from 253 to 280. The increase will be a combination of additional frequencies on existing routes, as well as several altogether new routes:
- Seattle – New Orleans: starting June 12
- Seattle – Tampa: starting June 20
- Seattle – Baltimore: starting September 2
- Seattle – Detroit: starting September 4
- Seattle – Albuquerque: starting September 18
- Seattle – Cancun: starting November 6, pending governmental approval
Alaska has already announced double-mile promotions for the New Orleans, Tampa, and Detroit flights (although, perversely, the registration deadline for the first two has already passed). Bonus miles for the other routes are probably in the pipeline.
Delta, which is already second only to Alaska in market share at Seattle airport, released its own new-service announcement on May 27, with the following flights set to launch later this year:
- Seattle – Spokane: starting November 3
- Seattle – Calgary: starting November 3
- Seattle – Maui: starting December 20
- Seattle – Bozeman: starting December 20
- Seattle – Los Cabos: starting December 20
- Seattle – Puerto Vallarta: starting December 20
Delta already operates the most international flights from Seattle, with service to London, Amsterdam, Beijing, Paris, Shanghai, and Tokyo.
Through the end of this year, Delta has a double redeemable- and elite-mile promotion in place for all Seattle flights, but the offer is only applicable to Washington state residents. As competitive pressure from Alaska mounts, that restriction could be relaxed.
Stay tuned for more from both airlines: more flights, and more frequent-flyer miles.
This article originally appeared on FrequentFlier.com.
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