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Yesterday I wrote about how I scored 2 business class lie-flat seats to Peru for my wife and I this summer.  The routings were:

  • IAD-LIM (stopover)-CUZ: 90,000 Alaska Airlines miles + $118.04
  • CUZ-LIM-IAD/DCA-LGA-CVG: 60,000 American Airlines miles + $114.10


Looking at the taxes and fees

The taxes and fees quoted ($118.04 on Alaska and $114.10 on American) are low enough that I could see that neither airline was imposing any kind of ridiculous fuel surcharges or anything, but they still seemed a little high.  High enough that I thought I would check into it.

I could not find anywhere on American’s website where they detailed the fee breakdown on an already purchased ticket (seriously, I looked forever – if you know how I can find it, please leave me a note in the comments).  In the end, I reached out to @AmericanAir on Twitter

(SEE ALSO: List of hotel and airline Twitter contacts)


Alaska Airilnes was a bit easier to find the charges – you can choose “View / Change flights”, enter in your name and record locator, and choose to view fare detail


The $12.50 booking fee is one that Alaska charges no matter what for every partner award (I had to pay it when I used Alaska miles to fly Emirates First Class on my recent first class trip around the world).  But the $15 ticketing fee is a phone booking charge, which shouldn’t apply since LAN awards can not be booked online.

So I called up Alaska Airlines on the phone, and after being on hold for like 30 minutes, explaining my case several times, requesting to talk with a supervisor, they said that was still the policy but as a “one time exception” (laugh), they would waive the $30 and refund my card.

So it’s frustrating that they still tried to charge it (if I had been thinking about it, I should have remembered to bring it up when I was on the phone booking the ticket in the first place).  As a contrast, American did NOT book it – they recently changed their policy so that awards that could not be booked online were not charged the phone booking fee.

So the total taxes and fees for our trip to Peru are approximately $88 / person (though we’ll likely add another $5.60 to book our initial CVG-WAS leg when we do that)

Take THAT Alaska!

Have you ever been charged a phone booking fee using Alaska miles for awards that can’t be booked online?  Share your story in the comments

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