By Winston Shek
Alaska Airlines Reveals New Mexico Flights from San Francisco
Anticipating heavier demand to “sun and fun destinations” this year, Alaska Airlines has unveiled three new flights to Mexico from its hub in San Francisco. From December 18, the Seattle-based carrier plans to fly from Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo, Loreto and Mazaltán to San Francisco, weekly on Saturdays.
|Origin||Destination||Departure Time||Arrival Time|
|San Francisco||Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo||8:00 A.M.||2:15 P.M.|
|Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo||San Francisco||5:25 P.M.||8:11 P.M.|
|San Francisco||Loreto||12:00 P.M.||3:40 P.M.|
|Loreto||San Francisco||4:50 P.M.||6:45 P.M.|
|San Francisco||Mazaltán||11:50 A.M.||4:10 P.M.|
|Mazaltán||San Francisco||5:15 P.M.||8:01 P.M.|
These seasonal flights are expected to last four months, running through April 16, 2022. All of these flights will utilize Alaska Airlines’ Airbus A320, which features 149 seats, including 12 first-class seats in a 2-2 configuration, 18 premium economy seats in a 3-3 configuration and 123 economy class seats in a 3-3 configuration.
In the past, Alaska Airlines has operated flights from San Francisco to Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo and Mazaltán, utilizing its Mcdonnell Douglas MD-80, according to schedules from DepartedFlights.
As part of an effort to target more “sun and fun” travelers, Alaska Airlines announced the resumption of its service between San Francisco and Cancun, in June, after ending the route in 2018 during the onset of the airline’s merger with Virgin America. In the same announcement, the Oneworld carrier announced new flights from Portland to New Orleans and Tampa and flights from Palm Springs to Austin.
Furthermore, in May, Alaska Airlines unveiled new flights to Belize City, Belize, boosting its presence in Latin America. Using its Boeing 737-800, the Seattle-based carrier plans to add seasonal flights to Los Angeles and Seattle from November.
With these new destinations, Alaska Airlines expands its offering to Mexico with up to 27 flights a day on peak days, primarily centered around its Californian bases. From San Francisco, the airline will have six destinations in Mexico, including Cancun, Puerto Vallarta and San Jose del Cabo, in addition to the new flights to Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo, Loreto and Mazaltán.
Meanwhile, its Bay-Area focus city, San Jose, receives flights to Guadalajara, Puerto Vallarta and San Jose del Cabo. Currently, its Los Angeles hub receives the most flying to Mexico, with all eight of Alaska Airlines destinations, which are Cancún, Guadalajara, Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo, Loreto, San Jose del Cabo, Manzanillo, Mazatlán and Puerto Vallarta. From its hubs in the Pacific Northwest: Portland and Seattle, Alaska Airlines plan to offer up to 7 flights a day to Cancun, Puerto Vallarta and San Jose del Cabo.
In a statement, Brett Catlin, vice president of network and alliances at Alaska Airlines, states, “Our guests are eager to relax, disconnect and have fun, and the places we fly to in Mexico are ideal locations to do that. With a total of seven nonstop destinations from the Bay Area this winter, including options from San Francisco and San Jose, tropical paradise is just a few hours away. Plus, we offer convenient nonstops from Los Angeles and San Diego to a range of destinations in Mexico and across Latin America.”
In 2017, Virgin America announced a merger with Alaska Airlines, transferring its San Francisco hub to Alaska Airlines. To commemorate the transfer of the hub, Alaska Airlines reshuffled its offering from San Francisco, adding flights to Albuquerque, N.M., Baltimore, Indianapolis, Kansas City, Kona, Hawaii; Mexico City, Minneapolis, Nashville, New Orleans, Orlando, Orange County, Cali.; Philadelphia and Raleigh/Durham.
However, in 2018, the Seattle-based airline announced that it started slowly cutting its route portfolio from San Francisco, removing flights to Denver, Indianapolis, Mexico City and Minneapolis from its schedule, according to AirlineRoute. Moreover, Alaska Airlines pulled out of Albuquerque, Kansas City, Kona, Nashville, New Orleans, Philadelphia and Raleigh/Durham in 2019 and 2020.
Since 2019, Alaska Airlines has added more breadth to its destinations in the Western U.S., adding flights to Anchorage, Redmond/Bend, Ore. and Spokane, Wash. During and after the COVID-19 pandemic, Alaska Airlines is increasing its leisure portfolio from the airport, due to increased leisure travel demand, with new flights to Boise, Idaho; Bozeman and Missoula in Montana; Jackson Hole, Wyoming and Tampa, Florida.