Since Alaska Airlines announced its acquisition of Virgin America in April 2016, a lot of work has been done especially during 2017. I think overall Alaska has done a great job keeping us informed of its integration plan regarding Virgin America. Both airlines are now offering similar inflight service and elite benefits, and a consolidated schedules are starting in April, 2018. The next step is to merge Virgin America Elevate program into Alaska’s own Mileage Plan program.
5 days left to redeem Elevate points
Virgin America website currently shows flights through April 2018. For flights after that, you would have to book on Alaska website directly. This means, you can only redeem Elevate points online for flight through April 2018, and your last day to redeem Elevate points is December 31, 2017, just five days from now.
[See also: Should you book Virgin America flights using Alaska miles or Elevate points?]
Converting Elevate Points to Alaska Mileage Plan Miles
One combined loyalty program will begin on January 1, 2018. Elevate Points will be converted to Mileage Plan miles. You can convert your points to miles now through January 31, 2018. From February 1-7, you won’t be able to access your points while all remaining points in your Elevate account will be automatically converted to Mileage Plan miles. Don’t worry, either way you will get 30% bonus miles. All points will be in your Mileage Plan account by February 8, 2018.
I transfer a load of SPG points to Elevate program before it was dropped as a SPG transfer partner. I was hoping to be able to take advantage of some of the sweet redemptions in the Elevate program. But unfortunately I don’t think I would be able to plan more trips before Virgin schedules ending in April. So I am going to convert all my Elevate points and use my Alaska miles for premium class on Cathay Pacific or Japan Airlines to Asia.
Are you able to make a final Elevate redemption?
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I transferred a ton of Marriott and SPG into Virgin and then Alaska miles and it has worked out well. Just keep in mind that you only have to book the trips before the Alaska/AA devaluation to take advantage of the cheaper rate. Just book something later in 2017 and you can make changes to it later.
I also found that most of the JAL awards wanted to ship me through San Diego on the “not so aweome” less than flat business seats so avoid that route to Japan.