Alaska Airlines Launches Elite Status Match to Woo Delta Elites Alaska Airlines Launches Elite Status Match to Woo Delta Elites

Alaska Airlines Launches Elite Status Match to Woo Delta Elites

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In mid-September 2023, Delta announced massive changes to how you'll earn Delta Medallion elite status. While Delta wants to focus on the positives — like only having one elite status qualification metric — most Delta elites are laser-focused on the significant increase in spending requirements. To earn Delta Diamond elite status in 2024, a SkyMiles member needs to earn a whopping 35,000 Medallion Qualifying Dollars.

Are you a Delta Medallion elite who's ready to bail on SkyMiles after these changes? If so, Alaska is ready to welcome you with a Mileage Plan elite status match. And, if you play your cards right (pun intended), you can score even higher elite status with Alaska than you currently have with Delta.

Key Terms of Alaska's Status Match for Delta Elites

  • This Alaska status match is only available to current Delta Medallion elites.
  • Must submit your request and proof here by October 31, 2023.
  • Applicants will get Alaska Mileage Plan elite status for at least a 90-day challenge period.
  • If you have a Alaska Airlines Visa® credit card (or get one by December 31, 2023), your elite status will be extended through December 31, 2024.
  • Your Delta elite status must have been earned through “actual flight miles or segments” — not “credit card activity, transferred points, or any other promotional offer.”
  • Only one status match is allowed for the lifetime of your Mileage Plan account.
  • Verification and approval of your status match request can take up to four weeks.
  • Offer valid only for legal residents of the United States and Canada.

Not a current Delta elite? Here's how you can match your elite status to Alaska Airlines from other airlines.

What Alaska Mileage Plan Status Delta Elites Will Receive

The elite status match table for this offer is rather convoluted. The elite status you'll get depends on two factors: How long your Delta Medallion elite status is good for and whether or not you're an Alaska Visa Card holder by December 31, 2023.

No card route

If you aren't a Alaska Visa Card holder — and don't get one before December 31, 2023 — you'll get the following Alaska elite status for a 90-day challenge period:

  • Silver Medallion => MVP
  • Gold Medallion => MVP Gold
  • Platinum Medallion => MVP Gold 75K
  • Diamond Medallion => MVP Gold 75K

To extend that status through December 31, 2024, you'll need to complete the following flying challenge in the 90 days after your request is approved:

  • MVP status: Fly 5,000 miles on Alaska
  • MVP Gold status: Fly 10,000 miles on Alaska
  • MVP Gold 75K status: Fly 20,000 miles on Alaska

Note that only flights on Alaska Airlines count toward this status challenge. That means you won't be able to shortcut it with long-haul flights on Alaska's partners like Qantas or Qatar.

Alaska Visa Card shortcut

Thankfully, there's a much easier way to extend your Alaska elite status through December 31, 2024. Just by having or getting a Alaska Visa Card, you won't have to complete a status challenge. Even better, you may get an even higher tier of Alaska elite status. The trick: Your matched status depends on how long your current Medallion elite status is valid.

Current Delta Elite Status... if valid through
December 31, 2023, you'll get
... if valid through
December 31, 2024, you'll get
Silver MedallionMVPMVP Gold
Gold MedallionMVP GoldMVP Gold 75K
Platinum MedallionMVP Gold 75KMVP Gold 100K
Diamond MedallionMVP Gold 75KMVP Gold 100K

Don't have an Alaska Visa Card yet? No worries. You can apply for an Alaska status match now without a card. You'll automatically be enrolled for the status challenge when you do so. But, once you apply for and are approved for a Alaska Visa Card, Alaska will cancel your challenge and extend your elite status through December 31, 2024.

Alaska Airlines Visa® credit card
Alaska Airlines Visa® credit card
Annual Fee$95
Welcome Bonus LIMITED TIME ONLINE OFFER - 60,000 Bonus Miles! Get 60,000 bonus miles plus Alaska's Famous Companion Fare™ ($99 fare plus taxes and fees from $23) with this offer. To qualify, make $3,000 or more in purchases within the first 90 days of opening your account.
  • Earn unlimited 3 miles for every $1 spent on eligible Alaska Airlines purchases
  • Earn unlimited 2 miles for every $1 spent on eligible gas, EV charging stations, cable, streaming services and local transit (including ride share) purchases
  • Earn unlimited 1 mile for every $1 spent on all other purchases

Should You Requalify for Delta Elite Status Before Applying?

Ironically, Alaska structured this promotion in a way that incentivizes current Delta flyers to (re)qualify for Medallion elite status before applying.

Say you're currently a Delta Gold Medallion but haven't requalified yet for 2024. If you complete the status match now, you'll only get MVP Gold status. However, if you wait until after you requalify for Delta Gold and make sure to have an Alaska Visa Card, you'll get MVP Gold 75K.

If you aren't familiar with Alaska elite status tiers, the difference between “MVP Gold” and “MVP Gold 75K” may not sound like much. However, MVP Gold 75K offers significantly better perks — including:

  • 125% bonus miles (vs. 100% bonus miles)
  • Premium class upgrades at boarding, except on saver fares (vs. having to book more expensive fares to get this perk)
  • First-class upgrades up to 120 hours before departure (vs. 72 hours)
  • Three free checked bags (vs. two)
  • Four Alaska lounge day passes (vs. none)

Perhaps the biggest difference is found when flying internationally. MVP Gold gets Oneworld Sapphire elites status vs. Oneworld Emerald elite status for MVP Gold 75K. Where Oneworld Sapphire elites get access to business-class lounges, Oneworld Emerald elites get first-class lounge access — even if you booked economy. If you're flying internationally through Los Angeles, London, Tokyo, Hong Kong, or other Oneworld hubs, the difference between these lounges is noteworthy.

Final Thoughts

If you're ready to bail on Delta, Alaska is ready to welcome you with open arms — particularly if you're willing to get an Alaska Visa Card.

Don't overlook the restriction that Alaska only allows one status match for the lifetime of a Mileage Plan account. Since this is such a generous status match, this is a great time to use that once-per-lifetime allowance — as long as you're actually going to switch to Alaska. I wouldn't recommend wasting your one Alaska status match if you aren't actually planning to fly Alaska Airlines.

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