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ALASKA AIRLINES TO CLOSE TWO RESERVATIONS CENTERS

 ALASKA AIRLINES TO CLOSE TWO RESERVATIONS CENTERS
 SEATTLE, Sept. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Alaska Airlines announced today it


will close its telephone reservations centers in Anchorage and Juneau this fall, saving the airline about $500,000 annually.
 The Anchorage operation, which employs 59 full- and part-time reservations agents, is set to close Nov. 14, while the Juneau facility, employing 18, will close Oct. 30.
 Employees will be eligible to transfer to reservation centers in the Lower 48. Those not wishing to move or without the seniority to claim other customer service posts will be eligible to receive severance pay.
 "This is disappointing because these two centers have been a fixture at Alaska Airlines for years, and their closure, in all likelihood, means that some of our employees will leave the airline," said Pat Glenn, executive vice president and chief operating officer. "But economics dictate this decision."
 Glenn cited the industry's adverse financial environment and the economies of scale gained by moving the reservations operations to larger facilities as among the factors contributing to the closures. "This action is an outgrowth of an ongoing review to identify ways to help the airline cope with the pressures of an anemic economy and persistent, destructive fare wars," he said. Within recent months, Alaska has announced cancellation of a $50- to $75-million maintenance complex in the Lower 48; cancellation of service to and closure of the airline's Toronto station; a reduced flight schedule for the fall season and a resulting furlough of about 650 employees.
 The closure of the Alaska reservations centers will have negligible impact on customers, Glenn said. "Wherever they are calling from, our Alaskan customers will receive the same level of service they've always enjoyed."
 The workload at the two facilities will be absorbed by the carrier's larger centers in Seattle and Tempe, Ariz. Anchorage agents handle between 2,000 and 3,000 calls per day, or about 8 percent of the total calls received each day by the carrier. Juneau agents field between 750 and 1,000 calls per day, about 3 percent of the total.
 -0- 9/14/92
 /CONTACT: Lou Cancelmi, 907-266-7700, Bill Ehrlich, 206-431-7424, both of Alaska Airlines/
 (ALK) CO: Alaska Airlines ST: Alaska, Washington IN: AIR SU:


LM -- SE006 -- 9225 09/14/92 15:00 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Sep 14, 1992
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