Early January of this year Alaska Airlines introduced an Economy Plus experience, Alaska Airlines Premium Class. The enhanced section of the Main Cabin offers 4 more inches of legroom, priority boarding, a complimentary snack box, and free alcohol.
Alaska Airlines Premium Class is available on select Boeing 737-800s and -900s, with upgrades to Premium Class beginning at just $15 USD. Mileage Plan Elite Members are eligible for complimentary upgrades to Premium Class.
Besides the extra legroom and a different-coloured headrest, the seat is exactly the same as in the rest of Economy Class.. it just comes with more amenities. I was, however, a bit skeptical about the seat when I first “sat” in it.. that is until I went back to the Main Cabin and noticed how truly tight it is compared to Premium Class.
The Premium Class legroom is great. The extra four inches are really noticeable on longer flights, over 2 hours in my experience. The added space provides passengers more comfort and a better overall experience when flying Alaska.
I’m currently en-route from Seattle to Cancun (almost for free!) (hello from 38k feet!), and I’m sitting in a Premium Class seat as I write this post. It has been about three hours into the flight, with two hours to go. To be honest, at first I was dreading another 5 hour flight in Economy Class, but this flight has already gone by quickly. We are currently somewhere over Texas and will soon be making our way over the Gulf towards Cancun.
I’m glad I’m an Alaska Airlines Elite member as I was upgraded to the Premium Class seat for free. Overall, the Premium Class experience has been awesome, so I just wanted to share a bit more with all of you.
During the first drink service which includes food for purchase, Premium Class passengers are offered a small snack box which contains dark chocolate, almonds, and cranberries. To be honest, the box isn’t that big and the snacks inside are smaller than I expected. Premium Class offers free alcohol with each drink service and Alaska Airlines recently enhanced (for the better) some of the alcoholic drinks, so I decided to try the “champagne” (which is really sparkling wine). I also asked for some orange tea.
The snacks from the snack box were okay, but nothing amazing. The dark chocolate was my favourite, the cranberries and almonds didn’t taste the best so I didn’t finish those. The “champagne”, however, was awesome. Even though it is sparkling wine, it actually tasted more like champagne – cool!
Complimentary snack boxes are only offered during the first drink service, however, free alcoholic drinks are available during every drink service. Alaska usually completes three drink “rounds” on flights of five hours or more, so that means three free alcoholic drinks for Premium Class passengers on Alaska’s longest flights.
During the second drink service, I decided to try the Bloody Mary, but wasn’t impressed and frankly, it didn’t taste good at all.
After that, I’m working on this blog post and really enjoying the Premium Class experience. I can see the flight attendants are preparing one final drink service and I think I’m going to try some Baileys this time.
To be honest, I had really low expectations going into the flight this morning.. but I’m really impressed, Alaska! Premium Class is much better than I anticipated and the extra legroom, free snacks, and free alcohol really does take most of the pain out from a five hour Economy Class flight. To be fair, I don’t mind the flight that much since the retail price was $1.2k USD and I booked using Avios and paid less than $100 USD for the taxes.
In the past, I would almost never fly Alaska on flights over three hours, but now, I’m really considering flying them on some of the longer routes if Premium Class is available. Most Hawaii flights from Seattle now offer Premium Class and considering those flights go for upwards of $600 USD, spending 25k Avios and $11.20 USD isn’t bad if you’re in Premium Class.
We are landing in Cancun in about an hour and a half, and this flight has been awesome and I don’t mind being in Premium Class at all – the experience is much better than in the rest of the Main Cabin. Great job, Alaska!