Alaska Airlines is taking a bold step by introducing its new record-breaking route, challenging passengers to spend nearly eight hours aboard a domestic jet. The airline, headquartered in Seattle, recently unveiled a brand-new service that will connect New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) to Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport (ANC) in Anchorage, Alaska.
Alaska’s Regional Vice President, Marilyn Romano, expressed enthusiasm, stating, “Alaskans love nonstop flights to and from the state. We like having great travel options, and adding places such as New York and San Diego definitely fit the bill.”
This daily seasonal service is set to kick off on June 13, 2024, utilizing Alaska’s state-of-the-art Boeing 737 MAX 8 jets. The service is slated to run through August 19. Additionally, Alaska Airlines will introduce once-weekly flights between San Diego and Anchorage on Saturdays, featuring the standard Boeing 737 aircraft.
Spanning a distance of 3,386 miles, the New York-to-Anchorage flight will claim the title of the longest route in Alaska’s network. The airline has allocated seven hours and 45 minutes for westbound travel and seven hours and five minutes for eastbound travel.
Prior to this announcement, Alaska Airlines operated it’s longest route from Chicago to Anchorage: 2,846 miles.
Evidently, Alaska’s new route eclipses the next-longest route by over 500 miles. It remains to be seen whether the airline will adapt its in-flight service to align more closely with long-haul flights. After all, New York to London, a true long-haul route, is merely 65 miles longer.
While this announcement marks a significant development for Alaska, the airline will face formidable competition on the other side of New York City. United Airlines already offers daily summer seasonal service between Newark and Anchorage.
United also operates a Boeing 737 MAX 8 on this route, with a slightly different schedule compared to Alaska. United’s Newark-to-Anchorage service departs in the afternoon at around 3:15 p.m. and arrives in Alaska at 6:58 p.m., returning as a red-eye flight, also departing at 8 p.m.
Two years ago, Delta Air Lines also operated flights between New York and Anchorage, but this service hasn’t resumed since the pandemic. Therefore, it will be intriguing to observe how Alaska Airlines fares with this new route.