Alaska Airlines Visa Signature® credit card

Robin Saks Frankel  in  Airline Advertiser Disclosure
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Recommended Credit Score

Good to Excellent (670 - 850)

A FICO score/credit score is used to represent the creditworthiness of a person and may be one indicator to the credit type you are eligible for. However, credit score alone does not guarantee or imply approval for any financial product.

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Best for travel buddies

Annual Fee:
$75
Purchase Intro APR:
N/A
Regular APR:
18.24%-26.24% Variable APR on purchases and balance transfers
Terms and Restrictions Apply

Bankrate Rating

Commonly used for: Airline, Auto Rental Insurance, Companion Ticket, Concierge Service, EMV, Excellent Credit, Extended Warranty Program, Free Checked Baggage, Free Credit Score, Lost Luggage Reimbursement, Miles, Mobile Pay Ready, No Foreign Transaction Fees, Purchase Protection, Rewards, Roadside Assistance, Travel, Travel Accident Insurance, Travel Assistance, Unsecured credit card, Visa Signature®, Zero Fraud Liability.

Do you like to crunch numbers? Are you willing to be ultra-flexible about where and when you travel as long as you’re getting a killer deal? Welcome to the Alaska Airlines Visa Signature credit card. This card also boasts a great airline transfer program and a Companion Fare™ that is relatively unmatched in the credit card market.

Review

The Bank of America-issued Alaska Airlines Visa Signature credit card has a hallmark feature that no other airline card can top: its Alaska’s Famous Companion Fare offer. The card is top-notch, get 40,000 bonus miles and Alaska’s Famous Companion Fare™ from $121 ($99 fare plus taxes and fees from $22) after you make $2,000 or more in purchases within the first 90 days of opening your account. There are no blackout dates for this companion fare and, depending on how you use it, it could save you hundreds of dollars on a flight.

For example, when Bankrate priced out a flight from New York’s JFK Airport to Lihue Airport in Hawaii, we found a round-trip coach flight with a stopover in Seattle each way that was listed for $1,297.60. The flight charged $84.76 in taxes and fees, plus the $99 companion fare. This means you could use the Famous Companion Fare welcome offer to fly yourself and a friend to Hawaii from JFK for a total cost of just $1,481.36.

That same $2,000 you spend within the first 90 days also will earn you 40,000 bonus miles, worth about $400 toward an airline ticket on Alaska Airlines.

Every year, you’ll get another Companion Fare™ for just $99 plus the cost of taxes and fees, which start at $22, on all Alaska flights booked on Alaskaair.com with no blackout dates. Other perks include a free checked bag for you and up to six guests traveling on eligible Alaska Airline reservations and an earnings rate of unlimited 3 miles for every $1 spent on eligible Alaska Airlines flights and 1 mile per $1 on all other spending.

What’s more the Alaska Airlines Visa Signature credit card is also a solid dining rewards card. Cardholders are automatically enrolled in the Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan Dining Rewards program. You can earn up to 5 miles per $1 spent at more than 11,000 restaurants nationwide. You’ll have to search on the program website to find participating restaurants near you, but we found a hundred or more participating restaurants in each of the several ZIP codes we searched.

Who should get this card

Anyone who can take advantage of the savings of the Companion Pass should consider this card.

Advantages
  • The Alaska's Famous Companion Fare™ can save you hundreds of dollars on a flight -- and it's easy to qualify for.
  • You can use your miles to book with lots of airline partners.
  • Free checked baggage for up to six on the same reservation is a generous perk.
Disadvantages
  • The companion fare™ offer can only be used once annually and only on coach flights.
  • If your travel plans include a location that Alaska Airlines or its partners don't travel to, there's no reason to get this card.
  • The best value from the card’s companion fare is for long-haul travel, which might not fit your needs.

Fees and APR

  • Pay a variable APR of 18.24% – 26.24% on purchases and balance transfers.
  • Annual fee is $75.
  • If you miss a payment or pay late, you’ll be subject to a variable penalty APR of up to 29.99%, which will apply indefinitely, plus a late payment fee of up to $39.
  • Pay no foreign transaction fee on purchases made outside the U.S.

Extras, perks and using points

Miles don’t expire on active accounts. You can book award travel online through the Alaska Airlines website for flights on Alaska Airlines and all of its travel partners with the exception of Cathay Pacific and LAN airlines, which must be booked over the phone.

Miles required for award flights vary based on destination and distance. The lowest award travel redemptions start at 5,000 miles for a one-way flight on Alaska Airlines within the continental U.S., and can go as high as 85,000 miles for a one-way coach flight from the U.S. to New Zealand on Emirates airline.