I’m always a little leery when I receive notification from an airline or hotel chain or their loyalty programs announcing changes or enhancements, because, more often than not, those improvements are really devaluations.
Today, I received an email from Alaska Airlines titled Something New is in the Air. Although I no longer have status with Alaska Airlines, I really like the airline, so I jumped a little at the communication.
The email began:
A new look.
A lasting commitment.
We’re excited to share our next chapter with you—a refreshed brand that celebrates what’s always mattered most to us. You. And bringing you the best flying experience we can.
I clicked on the SEE WHAT IS NEW button, and scrolled through pictures of the pretty new design, and the airline’s discussions regarding its commitment and pride for its customer service.
Following a number of these feel good messages, I came to the FAQ section.
With trepidation, I clicked on the link that said WHAT IS NEW, AND WHEN WILL I SEE IT? This was the message:
- Aircraft – By the end of 2016, we plan to have 40 aircraft (around 20% of our total fleet) painted with the new design. We expect to have the entire fleet repainted within the next few years. Over the next two years, we’ll also be refreshing the interior of our aircraft.
- Airports – Today, you’ll be able to see our new design at our largest hub, Seattle. Our goal is to update all 100+ of our airports by the end of 2016.
- Mileage PlanTM – Beginning in the spring of 2016, Mileage Plan materials, including elite membership cards and the Mileage Plan section of alaskaair.com, will feature the refreshed brand.
- Credit cards – Credit cards with the new brand design will be available in early summer 2016.
- Uniforms – You’ll notice some subtle changes to our employees’ uniforms over the next two months.
So as best I can tell (unless I’m missing something), and as much as I was waiting for the other shoe to drop, this announcement and the proposed changes are all positive. I really like Alaska Airlines. Oh, how I wish I still had status with them.