Prices are going up for economy class award redemptions on Icelandair using Alaska Airlines’ miles. Put another way, a poor value will become an even poorer value.
Alaska has many superb partners in its Mileage Plan program. It also has excellent sweet spots for redemptions with carriers including Cathay Pacific, JAL, and Qantas. And even Emirates redemptions once again represent a fair deal now that JAL Mileage Bank has slightly raised prices and added steep fuel surcharges to its Emirates redemptions.
But then there is Icelandair, the flag carrier of Iceland. In many ways, Icelandair is a budget airline. You pay extra for meals and baggage when you buy the cheapest fares. But the carrier also offers generally competitive rates on paid tickets.
Meanwhile, if you redeem Alaska miles for travel on Icelandair you pay miles plus a fuel surcharge of $100-150 in each direction for economy class. That’s rarely a good deal and is about to get worse.
Starting on April 15, 2019, Alaska Mileage Plan one-way redemptions on Icelandair will increase in price by 7,500 miles each way.
You can see the current and new pricing below:
This represents a 33% increase. Wow!
And by wow, I am not just expressing surprise, but alluding to a convenient coincidence. After the collapse of WOW Air last week, Icelandair once again finds itself as Iceland’s sole longhaul international carrier (Air Iceland Connect does not compete on routes to Continental Europe or North America).
There are instances where mileage redemptions may make sense….say a one-way journey with a free stopover in Iceland…but ALWAYS check paid fares before redeeming miles. This is one Alaska partner that is decidedly not a good value.
(H/T: One Mile at a Time)