Alaska Airlines has been busy with their merger with Virgin America since December 2016. Last week, the airline obtained a single operating certificate from the FAA. This means that the airlines now operate as one, for regulatory purposes. The airline has since been introducing service enhancements on board. One example is the introduction of a new first class seat, as well as adding extra-legroom seating. A new improvement for passengers is their new lounge at JFK. It seems the lounge has an opening date, well, month. It is expected the Alaska Airlines JFK Lounge opening will be in April.
Where in JFK?
The airline (alongside their merger partner Virgin America) moved terminals last year. They originally operated at Terminal 4, (Virgin America) and Terminal 8 (Alaska). Instead of moving into Terminal 8, which was what I originally expected, they moved to Terminal 7. There, the airline will have a closer relationship with their partner British Airways. These two airlines cooperate fairly closely, although Alaska isn’t part of any alliance. This means the JFK Lounge will be located in the former space of United’s lounge at the terminal. Since United abandoned JFK, the area has been left empty. The lounge will be adjacent to British Airways’ lounges at the Terminal.
Who Can Access?
Alaska is the only airline in the US that offers lounge access to all passengers who fly first class (except those who are upgraded). This means that those passengers who are traveling in the airline’s premium cabin will be able to access the lounge. Alaska is also the last airline in the US whose lounges are still part of the Priority Pass network. This will allow members of the program to access the lounge.
What To Expect
As with most airline lounges that are operated by domestic carriers, the lounge will not be all that over the top. I do expect, however, it will have a nice decor, and will be a good place to spend time before a flight. The lounge will probably offer house wines, beers and spirits, as well as snacks available to passengers. In terms of look and feel, expect to see some West Coast-themed items, as well as a homey feel. I honestly like Alaska’s lounges since they feel welcoming (when they aren’t super crowded).
I am excited to see the airline open up a new lounge at JFK. We have known it was going to happen for a while, but now the lounge is almost done. If the lounge does in fact push the boundaries to compete with American and Delta, expect stunning decor and a few more amenities than what I mentioned. Nonetheless, I don’t think this will be the case. If the lounge is a part of Priority Pass, it will be a welcome addition to the group.
What do you think? Are you excited to try out the new lounge? Would you like it to be a part of Priority Pass? Let us know!
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H/T: One Mile at a Time
Images from Wikipedia.