Tech executives will soon have a new direct flight option from Seattle to Bangalore, India, thanks to a West Coast alliance between Seattle-based Alaska Airlines and American Airlines.
The companies announced an expanded partnership Thursday that includes codesharing, which lets travelers book flights on each others’ network, as well as the ability to earn and use loyalty benefits on both airlines.
The deal also creates a new daily American direct flight from Seattle-Tacoma International Airport to Bangalore, described by Amazon (headquartered in Seattle) as the “Silicon Valley of India.” Both Amazon and Microsoft, also based in the Seattle region, have offices in Bangalore. That flight will launch this October, with purchases available starting next month. It’s the first-ever direct option from Seattle to Bangalore.
Then in March 2021, American will start a new route from Seattle to London Heathrow. Purchases will open this May.
“Alaska has always been proud to serve Seattle, the city that we call home. We’re thrilled to give our guests more choice, broader use of loyalty benefits, and seamless global service with American and oneworld,” Ben Minicucci, president of Alaska Airlines, said in a statement. “Additionally, international service to global business and tech hubs Heathrow and Bangalore is a tremendous win for the growing Seattle region and the West Coast.”
“India is a grossly underserved market, despite the number of businesses with a major presence in both India and the West Coast,” Vasu Raja, American’s senior vice president, network strategy, said in a statement. “By adding Seattle to Bangalore, we’re giving customers from more than 70 U.S. cities access to India in one stop or less — versus the two, three or four stops they’d have to make to get there in the past.”
The codeshare will also now expand to include American’s international routes from Los Angeles (LAX). In addition, Alaska will join the oneworld airline alliance as part of today’s announcement. See Alaska’s blog post for more details.