MYNORTHWEST NEWS

Alaska Airlines flight attendants win big contract; Vote to ratify set for August

Jul 9, 2024, 11:24 AM

Photo: Alaska Airlines picket...

Alaska Airlines has been ranked number one in Customer Service for several years. (Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

Alaska Airlines flight attendants have reached a tentative agreement with the airline for a new contract.

If ratified by the Association of Flight Attendants’ Alaska members, this three-year contract would boost pay by 32% and compensate flight attendants for boarding time before the plane takes off, according to Aviation Week.

This contract would be the first U.S. airline union agreement to include pay for flight attendants during the boarding process. Airlines have historically paid cabin crew members only after the cabin door is closed.

The union said boarding pay alone would amount to an 8% raise on average.

Related news: Boeing pays Alaska Airlines $160 million in compensation for blowout of panel during flight

“We were able to get Alaska to lead the industry, something they would never do in the past,” Sara Nelson, president of the Association of Flight Attendants, told Forbes. “It helps to raise the standard and makes it very hard for these other carriers to say they should pay less, when in fact they should pay more.”

The agreement also includes 21 months of retroactive pay, covering the time spent negotiating, as reported by the Anchorage Daily News.

Delta Air Lines, whose flight attendants are not unionized, began paying for boarding time in 2022.

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The agreement covers 21 months of retroactive pay, reflecting the time spent negotiating. Voting on the contract will take place later this month and conclude on August 14.

Nelson said Alaska will offer boarding pay at a higher rate than non-union Delta. Depending on trip length, Alaska boarding pay could add between 5% and 34% to the value of each trip.

“With four or five boardings a day, that’s a significant change,” she said.

Alaska flight attendants will also get reassignment pay when their schedules are changed during trips.

Bill Kaczaraba is a content editor at MyNorthwest. You can read his stories here. Follow Bill on X, formerly known as Twitter, here and email him here

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Alaska Airlines flight attendants win big contract; Vote to ratify set for August