Alaska Airlines Credit Cards
40,000 Alaska points ($2,000 initial spend) plus $100 statement credit, initial companion certificate has normal $99 fee. Offer Link.Business card offer is 40,000 miles and a first-year companion certificate, plus 2,000 miles for an employee card, but no $100 credit. Offer Link.
30,000 Alaska miles, plus a companion certificate (without the normal $99 fee).
$1,000 initial spend
($680 net value, .68/$)Signup Bonus Chart
3x Alaska Purchases
1x Everything Else
No Foreign Transaction Fee
If you live in Alaska Airlines territory, this is a "must-have" card. The annual companion certificate alone is worth hundreds of dollars. In addition, a solid signup bonus, free checked bags, and some other benefits.
Even if you don't live near one of Alaska's hubs, the signup offer is still valuable. You can use the points to fly on Alaska, American, or another one of Alaska's many other partners.
Because it is hard to use credit card travel benefits during the pandemic, Alaska has made some temporary changes to their cards.
- You earn 2x Alaska miles on restaurant spending during June and July.
- You earn 2,500 elite qualifying miles for every $5,000 spent on the card from June to September, up to a maximum of 10,000 qualifying miles (per cardholder).
Alaska Airlines Credit Card Options
Alaska Airlines offers a personal and a business version of their credit card. Both versions have identical features and benefits. However, the signup bonuses usually differ and the small business version isn't subject to all of Bank of America's signup limitations. Business Signup Bonus Chart.
Collecting the Signup Bonus
- It is worth signing up for this card just to collect the signup bonus. The typical signup bonus is 30,000. Even if you can't easily use the miles on Alaska, you can still use them on American Airlines or one of Alaska's many other partners.
- You can frequently get an extra $100 statement credit. This better offer is often presented during the Alaska checkout process and can be available using a promotional offer link.
- You may be able to earn the signup bonuses from both the personal and business version of the card. If you have any kind of side business, you are entitled to apply for business cards. If so, you can earn the signups from either or both versions. Unlock Extra Reward Points with Business Credit Cards.
- You aren't eligible to get the personal version of the card if you've had the card in the last 24 months. To earn another signup bonus, you need to cancel the card, wait two years, and then reapply.
In addition, you'll receive your first year's Alaska Airlines companion certificate as part of the signup bonus. Because the companion doesn't need to pay the normal $99 fee, we value the certificate at about $350, but it can easily be worth considerably more.
After subtracting the annual fee and the opportunity cost of using the card for $1,000 of spending, the calculated net value for the initial year is $680 (68 cents per dollar spent). Your value may be higher or lower, depending on how much you value Alaska miles and the companion certificate. How Much are Points Worth?.
- You'll receive an Alaska Airlines companion certificate every year you have your Alaska Airlines Card.
- The Alaska Airlines companion certificate is the only airfare companion certificate that simply just works—without any restrictions or drawbacks. You can travel anywhere that Alaska or Virgin America flies, including Hawaii, Mexico, and Central America. It works whenever there are any seats available and you can book the initial ticket using any economy fare class. The companion even earns miles from the flight and you can use the certificates for multi-city itineraries. Companions usually pay $99, plus taxes, but you can sometimes get a certificate (as part of the signup bonus) that waives the $99 fee. Guide to the Alaska Airlines Companion Certificate
- You can no longer apply for multiple copies of the personal version of the card. So, if you want to earn multiple certificates per year, you'll need to be able to take advantage of the business card as well.
If you live in Alaska Airlines territory, or you are planning a trip to Hawaii or the west coast of Mexico, this certificate provides great value.
Other Notable Benefits
- Free checked bags. The first checked bag is free for up to 7 passengers. Authorized cardholders also receive this benefit. Get Free Checked Bags with Airline Credit Cards.
- 25% discount on inflight purchases. Including internet access.
- 50% discount on Alaska Lounge passes. $25 per person, rather then $50.
- Access to the Visa Signature Luxury Hotel Collection. As with all Visa Signature cards, you'll get access to Visa's luxury hotel program. Whenever you book one of the 900+ participating hotels, you'll receive a set of valuable benefits, including free breakfast, late check-out, and a $25 food and beverage credit. The Visa program has slightly weaker benefits than the other luxury hotel programs, but includes a larger number of more affordable hotel options and a best price guarantee. Take Advantage of Luxury Hotel Programs for Valuable Extra Perks.
- Access to Visa Signature Offers. Your card entitles you to a set of special offers available from Visa.
- Free museum entry. As with all Bank of America credit cards, you'll get free admission to hundreds of museums on the first weekend of every month. Admission is for the cardholder only. Guests are not included, nor are any special exhibitions and other ticketed shows. Museums on Us.
- BankAmeriDeals. Bank of America has a shopping discount program that works like Amex Offers. To get each discount, you'll need to "activate" it through their website. Once activated, discounts are automatically applied when you use your card for the corresponding purchase. Most deals are cash-back based (typically 10%). BankAmeriDeals.
- You are probably slightly better off making your Alaska purchases with a card that earns one of the very highest reward rates on all your airfare purchases.. 3x Alaska miles are more valuable than the rewards from most cards, but not quite as good (for most people) as what is valuable from the very best cards for airfare purchases. However, if you highly value Alaska miles, you can't get them via the other rewards programs, so you may prefer to still make these purchases with your Alaska card. Best Credit Cards for Travel Spending.
- You don't want to use these cards for your everyday spending. You'll earn higher rewards from a good general-purpose reward card. Get a Great General Purpose Reward Card and Use It for All of Your Spending.
Getting Rid of the Card
- You can cancel without worrying about losing your Alaska miles. Once you earn them, they are treated like any other miles in your Alaska Airlines account. Any unused companion certificates will also continue to be available in your account.
- If you cancel your card, you may not be able to easily get it back. Bank of America limits your ability to get more than 4 cards every 24 months and 3 cards every 12 months. And you can't get one of their cards if you've gotten more than 3 personal credit cards from any bank in the last 12 months (7 cards for BOA banking customers). If you are signing up for bunch of new credit cards, you won't be able to get new Bank of America cards.
- If you decide to cancel, you may want to change to the Cash Rewards Card instead. The Cash Rewards Card earns a base rate of 3% on your choice of categories, including online shopping. With Platinum Honors status, the reward rate is boosted to 5.25%. Since bonus rewards are capped for each quarter, it can be helpful to have multiple copies of the card. But the only way to currently get multiple copies is to convert from other Bank of America cards.
- If you want to cancel your Alaska Airlines Card, it is best to do so before you are charged your annual fee. Bank of America may refund the fee if you cancel shortly afterwards, but they may not.
- You might be able to receive a retention offer to keep your card. It could be enough to make it worthwhile to keep the card.
Furthermore, you explicitly can't sign up for the Alaska Airlines Card if you've had it during the past 24 months.
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