Alaska Airlines

Alaska Airlines executives sounded upbeat after their first meeting with antitrust regulators about Alaska's proposed acquisition of rival Virgin America.

"So far, so good" was Alaska Air General Counsel Kyle Levine's summary of how the initial meeting with the U.S. Department of Justice went.

Alaska Airlines management is expressing confidence about integrating its rival Virgin America, whose pending acquisition was announced Monday. Any airline merger poses challenges and this one is no exception.

Alaska Air outbid rival JetBlue Airways to acquire Virgin America in what Alaska Air CEO Brad Tilden described as "a hard fought competition." Alaska Air won the bidding war with a $2.6 billion all-cash offer that was announced Monday.

You may remember the good old days when a domestic airline seat came with free checked bags and a meal. Now just about all coach passengers have to pay for those things. Next year, Seattle-based Alaska Airlines will join competitors in offering a "premium economy" class with more legroom for a fee.

Seattle-based Alaska Airlines has fallen to worst among the U.S. mainline carriers for mishandled bags. Fortunately for Northwest travelers, the unhappy distinction may be short-lived.

The parent company of Alaska Airlines reported the highest quarterly profit in its history Thursday despite stiff competition in the Northwest skies.

Starting next month, Alaska Airlines will explore charging extra for main cabin seats with more legroom and creature comforts.

The steep drop in oil prices is helping to pad the bottom line of Seattle-based Alaska Airlines. But don't expect lower fares on the horizon.

Tom Banse / Northwest News Network

Delta Air Lines CEO Richard Anderson said his company wants to nearly double its footprint at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. That implies an even stronger challenge than was already in the works to hometown carrier Alaska Airlines.

Anderson visited Seattle last week to discuss expansion plans with airport officials and corporate customers. Afterwards, he recorded a message for his employees. Anderson said he wants to acquire 30 gates to operate a global hub. Delta currently uses about 16 airport gates at Sea-Tac.

Aero Icarus / Flickr

Seattle-based Alaska Airlines plans to launch five more jets Friday to evacuate American vacationers from Los Cabos, Mexico. A hurricane slammed the resort area at the beginning of this week. Since then, there have been reports of looting, no water and electricity, and food shortages. Airlifts to get stranded tourists out of there started Wednesday and ramped up Thursday. Alaska Airlines spokeswoman Halley Knigge greeted the first wave of arrivals in Los Angeles.

Alaska Airlines

Seattle-based Alaska Airlines is dispatching jets today to evacuate American vacationers from Los Cabos, Mexico. Baja California is still reeling from the direct hit by Hurricane Odile at the beginning of this week.

InSapphoWeTrust / Flickr

The intensifying competition between Alaska Airlines and rival Delta Air Lines in the Western skies does not seem to be hurting the bottom line of either company. Seattle-based Alaska Air posted a record second quarter profit Thursday. This, a day after Delta toasted its own high revenues. Alaska executives are still concerned about a flood of new seats on its home turf. 

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

In the airline industry, we've gone through a period of mergers, consolidation and downsizing. Because of all this, some airlines have had to disappoint cities. They've stopped using them as hubs, which brings us something unusual at Seattle-Tocoma International Airport. The Northwest News Network's Tom Banse reports that Delta Air Lines has made it its newest hub.

Port of Seattle

Pacific Northwest travelers will get ringside seats to see if two airlines can be partners and rivals at the same time. One of those "frenemies" - if you will - is Seattle-based Alaska Airlines. And in the other corner is Delta Air Lines. The two are long-term contractual allies. But the relationship is being tested.

Kentaro Iemoto / Wikimedia

Delta Airlines is celebrating a new nonstop service to Hong Kong at SeaTac Airport today. The new route is another building block for a global gateway Delta is developing in Seattle.

Sylvester Pittman / Airlineguys.com

The parent company of Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air announced strong earnings for the first quarter of the year on Friday. The airline group's CEO said he expects good results for the rest of 2014 as well, notwithstanding growing competition from Delta Air Lines on Alaska's home turf.

You've probably heard this phrase before when discussing a messy relationship: "It's complicated." Those are the words the president of Alaska and Horizon airlines used Thursday to describe the state of the alliance between the Seattle-based carriers and Delta Air Lines.

Alaska Airlines Installing Power Outlets In New Seats

Apr 30, 2013

Alaska Airlines is installing passenger power outlets on many of its planes. It’s part of a switch to a new, slimmer seat allowing the Seattle-based airline to fit more people onto its jets.

Alaska Airlines Tries Do-It-Yourself Luggage Tagging

May 25, 2012
Alaska Airlines

Alaska Airlines is trying out a new luggage-tagging system at SeaTac Airport. It relies on customers using new kiosks to weigh their own bags and print out and attach labels. Travelers still must drop off luggage with agents and show I.D. But airline spokeswoman Bobbie Egan says the change should save some time. She says Alaska and its sister carrier Horizon tried out the system last year in Bend.

Photo courtesy Alaska Airlines

Alaska Airlines and its subsidiary Horizon Air continue to make money despite sharply higher fuel prices. Executives with the Seattle based airline group Thursday reported a twelfth consecutive quarterly profit. CEO elect Brad Tilden says the 28 million dollar net profit in this year's first quarter is "marginally" smaller than the same quarter last year.

Brad Tilden: "Given this quarter's solid results and the current demand environment, we're cautiously optimistic about 2012. The biggest headwind is high fuel prices and their impact both on our cost structure and on the pocketbooks of our customers."