A lot of you by now have heard about the Alaska MileagePlan devaluation, which does not allow booking of award flights on Cathay, Japan Airlines, and Hainan within 72 hours of departure. The problem was that these airlines often release award space (especially premium cabin) only within this window. This would have significantly devalued the ability to redeem Alaska miles on premium cabins and some of the finest/cheapest ways to travel to Asia.
Well it looks like Alaska has softened the blow by updating its policy to limit it to just intra-Asia flights:
The advance booking restriction for these carriers, including awards from North America to Asia will be removed by close of business. The 72-hour advance booking requirement will remain in place for intra-Asia awards only on CX, JL, and HU.
— Alaska Airlines (@AlaskaAir) February 15, 2018
This is terrific news and everyone can continue booking those coveted Cathay first class awards within 72 hours as of later this evening (prob after 6pm PST).
I suspect that Alaska decided that it was too much damage for its mileage purchasing program and got its IT people together fast enough to limit the policy to just intra-Asia. Alaska continues its reign as the customer friendly, honest airline, contrary to its big rivals (esp. Delta)
For your reference here are the award charts for redemption of Alaska miles on Cathay, JAL, and Hainan: