Middle Age Miles

The “West Coast” Offer Works! – Approved for a 40k Bonus on the Alaska Air Visa

Bank of America Alaska Airlines Visa Signature card

I was instantly approved for the Bank of America Alaska Airlines Visa card today, with a sign-up bonus of 40,000 Alaska MileagePlan miles plus an Alaska “Companion Fare,” for $2,000 minimum spend within 90 days.  The sign-up bonus is a special offer that appears to be generally available only on the West Coast.

I thought this was worth an article highlighting the offer and application, because of the value of the sign-up bonus and the way in which I was able to get the special “West Coast” offer.

What Is the Card and What Are Its Benefits?

  • Bank of America Alaska Airlines Visa Signature card (personal)
  • $75 annual fee – not waived first year
  • Bonus Category: 3x Alaska miles/dollar on Alaska Airlines purchases
  • 1x Alaska mile/dollar on all other purchases
  • Free checked bag on Alaska flights for cardholder and up to 6 other guests on the same reservation
  • Alaska $99+ Companion Fare each year on account anniversary – buy one domestic US ticket in economy class on Alaska at the prevailing price, get a companion ticket for $99 plus taxes and fees (usually $121 total) – no blackout dates
  • Access to BankAmeriDeals – statement credit offers (usually 10%) at various merchants and restaurants

What Was the Sign-Up Bonus?

  • 40,000 Alaska MileagePlan miles
  • Alaska $0 Companion Fare – buy one domestic US ticket in economy class on Alaska at the prevailing price, get a companion ticket by paying only the taxes and fees (usually $22) – no blackout dates
  • Spend requirement is $2,000 within the first 90 days after account opening

What Is the Sign-Up Bonus Worth?

  • Our baseline value for Alaska miles is 1.5 cents/mile, so the 40,000 Alaska miles are worth about $600
  • Even though we are not regular Alaska flyers, it should be relatively easy to get at least $200 in added value from the Companion Fare (we usually fly American, but we have a college-age daughter in Seattle) – it should be possible to get quite a bit more value out of this if you’re a regular Alaska flyer
  • Total value = $800 (and potentially more)

Why Did We Apply for This Card, and Why Now?

  • Sign-up bonus is a historical high
  • Sign-up bonus is a special limited offer – apparently generally available only on the West Coast (and, per Doctor of Credit and Out and Out, by using a browser trick that sounds complicated to me)
  • The regular sign-up bonus is 30,000 miles (plus the Companion Fare), and it’s usually possible to get 30,000 miles plus a $100 statement credit (plus the Companion Fare) by creating a dummy booking on the Alaska website – the offer often shows up just before you would complete your purchase
  • I wanted access to BankAmeriDeals again – there are regular 10% statement credit offers for a few restaurants we frequent (including Del Frisco’s steakhouse in our home town of Plano) as well as a semi-regular 10% statement credit offer at Staples (unfortunately capped at a $6 credit) – we can save as much as the $75 annual fee or close to it by utilizing these Deals

I Thought You Said This Was a “West Coast” Offer – How Did Middle Age Miles Get It as a Texas Resident?

  • I tried to generate the offer from home in Plano, Texas, on Sunday, with no luck – I could only pull the regular 30k offer using different browsers with and without incognito, plus I could pull the 30k offer with $100 statement credit by making a dummy booking
  • Philly and I traveled to Seattle today – once I got to the hotel, I logged on and began searching for a way to get the 40k offer
  • I was able to pull the 40k offer by (1) using a Chrome browser; (2) opening an incognito window; (3) going to the Alaska website; and (4) logging in to my account – at this point the offer showed up, as pictured below – when I clicked on Apply Now, it sent me to the next screen pictured below, which detailed the offer
  • As I mentioned above, there are reports that the 40k offer can be accessed from non-West Coast locations, using a complicated browser trick described by Doctor of Credit and Out and Out

How Did You Get Approved?

I thought there was at best a 50/50 shot that I’d be approved for this card.  My status at the time of the application was:

  • 13/24 (including 1 AU card)
  • 7/12 (including 1 AU card)
  • 4/6
  • 2 recent accounts do not yet show on my Experian report (which B of A pulled), so B of A presumably saw me as 11/24, 5/12, and 2/6
  • Credit Score: 793 on Experian – 817 on TransUnion and 830 on Equifax
  • No problems under the B of A 2/3/4 rule
  • Most Recent Approval/Account: October 3, 2018 (Amex Gold) (6 days)
  • Most Recent Approval/Account Showing on Experian Report: June 2018 (US Bank Altitude Reserve & Citi Premier) (4 months)
  • Number of open B of A cards: 1 (Alaska Airlines business card)
  • Previous B of A Alaska personal card canceled:  June 26, 2018 (a little over 3 months ago)
  • Other Relationship with B of A: Checking account held for 3-4 years with balance usually in the range of $1,500 to $5,000

For those who have been contemplating whether B of A has a hard 6/24 rule, my approval is an exception. I have included my detailed information so you can evaluate why my application was not denied by B of A.

What Else Might Be Important or Interesting?

  • After I submitted my application, the B of A website presented me with 4 “Identity Questions” – things like what car do I have, what street have I lived on, what is the name of a previous employer
  • After I correctly answered the Identity Questions, I was instantly approved
  • After approval, I was presented with a “Use My Card Now” option – I went through this process, agreed to the Disclosures, and was then given a card number including expiration date and CVV code
  • As we noted in our “Keep or Cancel” article about this card from back in June, (a) the annual $99 Companion Fare at the first account anniversary posts when the annual fee comes due and is not clawed back if you cancel later; and (b) I was able to cancel the B of A Alaska card after my second-year annual fee posted and receive a credit for the entire $75 fee – the B of A rep told me that the annual fee is automatically refunded if the account is closed within 60 days from when the annual fee posted
  • The 40,000 mile sign-up bonus is shown as a “Limited Time Offer” – but I have not seen any information about when it might end

We hope that you found this article about the sign-up bonus and approval for the Bank of America Alaska Airlines Visa card to be helpful and informative.  To keep up with all of our tips and helpful information on credit cards and earning miles, please Like and Follow us on social media at:

Please share and re-tweet our posts and tell all of your friends about Middle Age Miles!  Thank you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: