How to Change a Flight on Alaska Airlines

If you bought a main or first class fare, you can make changes for free in most cases.
Sep 3, 2021

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For anyone who needs to change their airline ticket, rest easy knowing that the Alaska flight change policy is generous, the process is fairly straightforward and it typically doesn’t take more than a few minutes to wrap up.

Let’s get started.

What is the Alaska flight change policy?

Alaska has three different types of paid fares — Saver, main and first — and there are different flight change policies for each type of fare, plus one for award flights.

Saver fares

Saver fares are the least expensive. They’re also the most restrictive, meaning that they’re not eligible for any type of changes, refunds or cancellations — unless they fall under the “Peace of Mind Waiver.” This policy applies to tickets purchased between Feb. 27, 2020, and April 30, 2021, with original travel dates between Feb. 27, 2020, and March 31, 2022. If you purchased a Saver fare that meets these criteria, you can cancel your flight without a fee and either deposit the purchase price into your “My Account” wallet or receive a credit certificate for future travel.

However, even if your Saver flight is covered by the Peace of Mind Waiver, you cannot change it. To make changes under the Peace of Mind Waiver, you’d need to first cancel, then rebook.

If you booked a Saver flight that’s not covered by the Peace of Mind Waiver, you just can’t change it. Period.

The only way to get a refund for a Saver flight is to cancel it within 24 hours of booking.

Main or first class fares

Main and first class fare customers can make changes for free, as long as the flight isn’t departing that same day.

When you make a flight change, you’ll need to pay the difference between your original flight and the new flight you select. If the new flight costs less than the original, you’ll receive a refund.

Same-day change policy

To make same-day changes, in most cases you’ll need to pay $25-$50, but you won’t be charged a difference in fare. You can only make same day changes during the check-in window, and you must request the change prior to the departure of your original flight. Your new desired flight must depart on the same calendar day as your originally scheduled flight, and you must keep the same origin, destination, thru and connection cities.

The same-day change fee is waived for customers with refundable tickets. It’s also waived for MVP Gold and MVP Gold 75K Mileage Plan members and those traveling in the same reservation.

7 steps to change your Alaska flight

The first thing to do when you want to change an Alaska flight is to determine what type of fare you have. If it’s a Saver fare, you’re out of luck — Saver fares aren’t eligible for changes. However, if it’s within 24 hours of booking, you can cancel a Saver fare for a full refund.

If you have a main or first class fare, remember that you can make changes for free. The only thing you’ll pay for is any difference in fare. To get started, log in and find the flight you’d like to change in the “Upcoming Trips” section of your account. Select “Change Reservation,” then:

Step 1: Select the passenger(s) you’d like to make changes for.

Step 2: Choose “Change this trip.”

Step 3: Under the “Departing Flights” section, click the “Change Flight” tab.

Step 4: Select the type of fare you’d like from the dropdown menu. The selections are slightly cryptic, so we’ll decipher them here:

  • Lowest main or first class: The lowest-priced main or first class fare available. While you can cancel these flights, you won’t be able to get a refund — but you can get a credit certificate for the amount of your flight or Alaska will deposit the funds into your My Wallet account.

  • Refundable main or first class: A main or first class fare you can cancel and receive a full refund.

  • Mileage: A fare that qualifies for an upgrade using Mileage Plan miles.

  • MVP/MVP Gold/MVP Gold 75K: A fare that qualifies for MVP/MVP Gold/MVP Gold 75K members to receive a complimentary upgrade to premium or first class.

  • MVP Gold Guest: A fare that qualifies for use with an MVP Gold guest upgrade code.

Step 5: Click the “Continue” button at the bottom of the page.

Step 6: Choose a new flight. Any difference in fare or credit due will be displayed to the right.

Step 7: Continue on to checkout and finalize your change(s).

How it works for award flights

Changes to Alaska flights booked with points are free. You might need to supplement with additional miles if your new flight is more expensive, but if your new flight costs less, you’ll get a refund of miles into your Mileage Plan account.

To get started, log in and find the flight you’d like to change in the “Upcoming Trips” section of your account. Select “Change Reservation,” then:

Step 1: Select the passenger(s) you’d like to make changes for.

Step 2: Choose “Change this trip.”

Step 3: Under the “Departing Flights” section, click the “Change Flight” tab.

Step 4: Select the type of fare you’d like from the dropdown menu. Here are the options:

  • Lowest main or first class: The lowest-priced main or first class fare available.

  • Premium economy: These seats have four inches of extra legroom. You’ll also get complimentary beer and wine and priority boarding.

  • Upgradeable MVP/MVP Gold/MVP Gold 75K: A fare that qualifies for MVP/MVP Gold/MVP Gold 75K members to receive a complimentary upgrade to first class.

Step 5: Click the “Continue” button at the bottom of the page.

Step 6: Select a new flight. Any difference in fare or credit due will be displayed on the right.

Step 7: Continue on to checkout to finalize the change(s).

Should I make flight changes online or over the phone?

It’s usually easier to make flight changes online. Your flight is eligible for online changes if:

  • You purchased your ticket directly through Alaska Airlines.

  • No passengers have checked in for any flights on the reservation.

  • Your reservation doesn't include Saver fares or government fares.

  • Your reservation includes seven guests or less and/or isn't part of a larger group booking.

  • Your reservation contains no more than eight flight segments.

  • Your reservation is not a Mileage Plan award ticket for travel on Cathay Pacific or LATAM.

  • No special services, such as pet accommodations, have been requested on your reservation.

If your reservation is not eligible for online changes, you can make changes over the phone. The number to call is 1-800-252-7522.

The bottom line

The Alaska flight change policy is very customer-friendly. For the most part, flight changes are free — unless you have a Saver fare or want to make a same-day change. It’s typically easier to make changes online, but there are a few reasons why you’d need to call instead of click.


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