Many of us are familiar with the intra-Asia stopover trick with Japan Airlines using Alaska Mileage Plan. For example, the route Singapore-Tokyo-Jakarta can be accomplished with only 25000 miles in Business Class, with a free stopover in Tokyo! In other words, for Singapore-based travellers, you’ll be snagging a great deal for an ‘almost’ round-trip with a decent Business Class product on Japan Airlines.
Days ago, award space on Singapore Airlines flights were also made available on Alaska’s site. True enough, the same stopover feature could be applied on intra-Asia bookings. For example, the itinerary Shanghai-Singapore-Bali would price out at 25000 miles, with a free stopover in Singapore. This was also due to the classification of China under Southeast Asia that led to such a pricing.
However, in a sudden turn of events, Alaska Mileage Plan has plugged the loophole. First, there will no longer be stopovers allowed for all intra-Asia flights. Random checks on the platform using the aforementioned itineraries on Japan Airlines and Singapore Airlines with intra-Asia stopovers turned up with no results. Also, Alaska Mileage Plan has proceeded to categorise China with Japan and Korea for Singapore Airlines redemptions, which is geographically more correct.
These developments would deal a severe blow to those who have Alaska miles and have the intention to redeem them on such intra-Asia routings. All we can hope for now is that this is only temporary, but deep inside we all know that this was a loophole that was simply waiting to be plugged. S/N 10 in the T&Cs below says it all.