Where were the most miles spent in 2018?

Before heading into the New Year, we’re pausing to celebrate.

Mileage Plan members went the distance in 2018. A whopping 19 million flights were flown on Alaska, Horizon and our Global Partner airlines – all earning miles for our members. This includes the 338,480 miles racked up by one traveler (thanks, Richard).

Whether you’re an MVP Gold or still working toward elite status, it’s fun to see where fellow members traveled using their hard-earned miles.

This year, award travel to Phoenix, Las Vegas and San Diego led the way. Portland, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Orange County and Juneau rounded out the top-eight destinations.

“We’re thankful to our loyal members for choosing Alaska Airlines again and again,” said Ryan Butz, Alaska Airlines’ managing director of loyalty. “We love rewarding our members with miles based on how far they fly – not just how much they spend – and easy-to-earn elite benefits. 2018 was a phenomenal year and we’re excited for what the next 12 months have in store.”

Fun fact: Nearly 5 million checked bags flew free this year for our elites and guests with the Alaska Airlines Visa Signature® card. That’s a lot of luggage getting VIP treatment!

If you’re feeling a little FOMO, it’s not too late to join Mileage Plan. Someone joins every 30 seconds!

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  1. God answered a few prayers with the opening of another Seattle-Area airport up in Everett in February. And, thankfully, Alaska has a stake in the ground there! Thank you ALASKA for making this happen. I am sure it was a battle with local neighbors but, in the end, it will be worth the effort for everyone to avoid Sea-Tac whenever possible!!! Can I get an Amen?!?!?

  2. We have not flown any airline but Alaska since our trip to Europe in 2010. We adore the service, convenience and fares from our home in Seattle. We’ve used our companion passes to Cabo and Kona and we always hope for fares that are low enough to avoid using our miles. We fly mostly on the west coast, but love the nonstops to NOLA and Chicago as well. Sadly, I fell just 1100 miles short of my first MVP in 2018, so I intend to pay more attention in 2019.

  3. What is FOMO?

    1. Fear of missing out. 🙂

  4. How about adding Mesa-gateway. Phoenix area is to big for just one airport.

  5. The past 31 years, I have been a Seattleite, with the past 14+ years equally splitting my time between Seattle & LA. Been a million-miler with Alaska Airlines for many years now. In 2018, I permanently made LA my one and only home. With all of Alaska’s expansions the past couple years, and LA becoming one of Alaska’s hubs, I’d like to see a greater selection of non-stop service from LA to the Midwest and East Coast cities.

  6. Happy to see California get recognized. We seemed to get little recognition because Seattle has been the main focuse for so long. I hope to see more routes out of San Diego.

  7. Would love to see more routes out of PHX! Seeing that it was in the top flown destinations ! Not only for our employees but for our passengers! I understand that AA has a huge presence here but apparently the need is there! 🙂

  8. Hurray for LAS. Maybe we should increase more destinations To/From Vegas. (Hint, Hint)

  9. Interesting information regarding top destinations. I would be interested in finding out what the originating cities are for different destinations. From what I can see, most of the smaller stations where Alaska has presence only have flights to Portland or Seattle with connections from there to anywhere in the world. With technology today, people can work from almost anywhere and make a living. Consider the frequent travelers such as the Million Miler, Gold 75K, Gold, and MVP mileage plan members. What destinations are popular to these rural area folks?

  10. We’d love a direct Santa Rosa to Lihue! Even once a month 🙂

  11. Chicago is my best bet. Always fly there to visit family & flts are always full but luckily always we get on.:)

  12. Would love service to more places
    In New England like Manchester NH or Portland, Maine!
    Please and thank you!

    1. Providence RI too. The more America (and Canada) sees the great service in Alaska Airlines the better.

  13. Who are the global partners and do accumulated miles usable on those lines?

    1. Hi Ricardo. You can see all our Global Partners and the mileage earn rates for each partner here: https://www.alaskaair.com/content/mileage-plan/how-to-earn-miles/airline-partners

  14. Love these kinds of updates… want to additionally put a plug in for adding direct service between Boise, Idaho and Bozeman, Montana!

  15. All my flights were to PV Mexico (22,000) never a bad trip

  16. Great information and thank you for sharing! If Phoenix is one of the top destinations… can you please increase service so that we can get to connections on Alaska to the rest of the country! A couple of daily non stops to SFO and a little enhancement to PDX and SEA would make staying loyal a lot more viable. I made MVP Gold this year…but also flew over 54K miles on a competitor that were to SFO, ORD and PDX from Phoenix… all of which I could have and would have flown on Alaska if you had the flights. Even if I had to connect to do it. Right now, it is impossible without the PHX service being adequate.

    1. I am in the air upwards of 5x per week. I have mvp gold75k, and also have elite status on two additional airlines. I’d much rather devote my “air time” to Alaska. My trips to the west coast from Dallas are never an issue. It’s my trips to PHX, DEN, ABQ, ELP, and LAS that I end up on other airlines. Love Alaska’s customer service, but the routes have me limited.

    2. Thank you for sharing Doug. There is something to be said about making MVP Gold AND flying over 54K on Alaska competitors? Friends have mentioned similar experiences to me. I do believe Alaska is very conscientious about building its brand and taking feedback into consideration.

      1. Yes…Alaska is a great airline and I will hopefully make my 1 Million miles still. I do think as you evolve you need to think about the hub and spoke model so that you can bring passengers to your hubs effectively. I cannot get from PHX to LAX to connect with the Alaska Flights to Mexico or Costa Rica, I cannot get to SFO from PHX to connect to the transcontinental and Hawaii flights. Just a few thoughtful additions could make a huge difference.

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