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Thread: Alaska Airlines Pulling out of Adak

  1. #1
    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 1999
    Anchorage, Alaska

    Default Alaska Airlines Pulling out of Adak

    Hi folks,

    I received news today that Alaska Airlines is not going to renew their bid for serving Adak. The Essential Air Service subsidy from the DOT is due for bids this coming summer and Alaska will not be bidding. They promise to continue service until another company picks up the route, and at that point they will be out of there.

    The new EAS subsidy is scheduled for July 1, 2012. It is possible that another carrier will jump on this right away, but it's also possible that Alaska will have to continue serving Adak beyond July 1 if no other carrier steps up to the plate. Right now it's too early to say how it will all shake out.

    They were clear that there are no plans to bring Horizon Air to Alaska and that this decision has no bearing on Alaska's EAS agreements in Southeast Alaska.


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  2. #2
    Member Salmon-Thirty-Salmon's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2008


    I read the news today as well and was saddened by the news. Although I understand the bottom line, I was surprised to hear they would not put forward some proposal that guaranteed revenue for the flying while other companies [Pen-Air, etc] could submit never know what will get approved. I admit, I am not fully familiar on the way this EAS contract was written, other than it included two EAS subsides. One for passenger and one for air-cargo services. Prior to Alaska gaining the contract in the early 2000's I believe the contract was with Pen-air [pax] and Evergreen [cargo] after Reeve and the military exited the market with the base closure.

    As a pilot, it was one of the greatest places a 737 driver could to fly to -- challenging, exciting and rewarding -- and on the nice days, an incredibly scenic environment rich with history and beauty. As a sportsman/outdoorsman, I found island offers great hunting for bou, ptarmigan and waterfowl. The three times I have been there for hunting were some of the best times I've had out in the field.

    For those that are still planning to get out there for a great adventure, it is too soon to tell how this will shake out. Depending on the bidding carrier, and if Alaska wishes to have any relationship with the carrier on that flight will determine if any benefits will extend on that route -- specifically if mileage plan miles will work on the route. I know this was the popular choice for affordability on these hunts due to the high airfare. Of course, high frequency travelers of the bidding carrier may be rewarded with the ability to use their benefits on said route. Also, if its bid by a smaller aircraft, it may be difficult to travel in and out with all the gear and freezer filling goodness that the island offers and the jet was able to handle. All interesting logistics that could have a major impact on the community and the hunting revenue they bring in. It also could make things interesting for the caribou herd which appeared to be in-check due to the solid amount of pressure it was receiving.

    I will add that it was stated there are no plans for Horizon in Alaska -- however that related to this route specifically. Although, the Air Group has not finalized any plans or dates for Horizon --- or a smaller aircraft operated by a third party to enter the state of Alaska to fly under the Alaska banner, it is very much on the table. A lot of those decisions will be based on the upcoming bypass mail issues/contracts currently in Congress as they deal with the USPS who continues to bleed out money like it is going out of style...kinda like the reduction in Essential Air Services.

    Kinda bummed.
    Changing times...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011


    Well, it will give another air service a chance to prove themselves, and it will keep some folks employed. No big deal.


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