After weeks of confusion over the validity of tickets, Alaska Airlines has canceled all existing flight reservations to and from Unalaska through May 31, 2020.
In a statement released Friday afternoon, the airline said it’s automatically rebooking current ticket-holders through RavnAir Group. But any new reservations will have to go directly through Ravn.
Those announcements came in the wake of a fatal plane crash on Oct. 17 and a roughly month-long suspension of regular air service. Ravn operates Unalaska’s flights to and from Anchorage, while Alaska Airlines has long served as a marketing partner, setting prices and selling tickets for the route.
The airlines’ partnership, however, was specific to the Saab 2000 aircraft, which Ravn chose to suspend until it can perform unspecified safety checks on the plane.
“Ravn Air Group has decided to halt service of the Saab 2000 aircraft pending a full investigation into the circumstances of the incident,” said the statement by Alaska Airlines. “We respect and support that decision and are presently conducting our own assessment. It could be several months before that process is complete. Accordingly, all flights marketed by Alaska Airlines to and from Dutch Harbor through May 31, 2020 have been canceled.”
Ravn resumed regular flights Thursday, Nov. 14 on DeHavilland Dash 8 aircraft. Airline officials have said they’ll fly the smaller, slower plane on a temporary basis until they reinstate the Saab 2000.
It’s unclear when that’ll happen, and it appears Ravn and Alaska decided against extending their partnership to the Dash 8.
In its statement, Alaska Airlines said it has “no plans to market service to and from [Unalaska] on Ravn or any other carrier.” Apart from existing reservations that are being rebooked, that means Alaska Airlines miles are no longer eligible for buying flights on the Unalaska route.
“Travel to and from [Unalaska] booked on Ravn will not accrue Alaska Mileage Plan miles,” said the statement. “There is no change to accrual or redemption on Ravn to other destinations.”
Airline officials previously said Ravn and Alaska were trying to work out an agreement that would allow travelers to use Alaska miles on Ravn flights to and from Unalaska. The statement did not explain why the airlines did not come to an agreement.
Neither Ravn nor Alaska Airlines spokespeople have responded to KUCB’s requests for further information and interviews.