aword from oneworld: April 2009

28 April 2009

LAN Ecuador launches first domestic flights:  oneworld® now offers domestic flights in a fourth South American country, with affiliate member LAN Ecuador launching internal services in its home market.  It is now linking its two hubs Guayaquil and Quito with seven Airbus A318 flights a day.  Later it will connect both gateways with Cuenca and the Galapagos Islands. 

Until now, it has only operated internationally, with flights between Ecuador and the USA, Europe, Chile and Argentina.

oneworld is the only alliance with any member airlines based in South America, with LAN Airlines and its affiliates already offering domestic services within Chile, Argentina and Peru, besides their comprehensive international networks.

Dragonair aims to add Guangzhou to its network from September:  Dragonair is aiming to add Guangzhou to its network, with twice-daily passenger flights from September.  Currently, Japan Airlines is the only oneworld airline to serve Guangzhou, formerly known as Canton and home base of SkyTeam's China Southern.  Dragonair's plan to open service on this route is subject to government approvals.

Malév becomes fourth oneworld member to serve St Petersburg:  Malév Hungarian Airlines has resumed services to St Petersburg after a near 10-year break.  It is now operating to the Russian city from its Budapest base twice weekly during the summer season, to late October.  It is the fourth oneworld member to serve the Russian city, alongside British Airways, Finnair and Iberia. 

Cathay Pacific named Airline of the Year:   Cathay Pacific has been named Airline of the Year 2009 in the World Airline Awards run by the Skytrax airline quality research organisation - the third time in ten years that the airline has taken the scheme's overall top award.  This year, it was also named Best Airline Asia and Best in South East Asia.

Overall, oneworld's 10 member airlines took a total of seven of the scheme's top awards.  LAN took two top prizes - as Best Airline South America and Best Regional Airline South America.  British Airways was judged Best Transatlantic and Qantas retained its award as Best Airline Australasia.

American to make 300 of its US domestic aircraft in-flight wifi hotspots:  American Airlines is to offer passengers wifi internet access in-flight on more than 300 of its aircraft flying on US domestic services within the next two years.   After trials on board 15 of its Boeing 767-200s since August, it is now to install the Gogo equipment on all 150 of its MD80s and then its entire Boeing 737-800 fleet.

Gogo turns an American Airlines flight into a wifi hotspot, enabling passengers to surf the web, check email, send instant messages, access a corporate VPN and more. Cell phone and Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) service use will not be available.  Once the aircraft has reached 10,000 ft, users can simply turn on their wifi enabled devices - such as laptops, smartphones and handheld PDAs - then open their browsers and be directed to the Gogo portal page where they sign up and begin surfing.

RJ moves alongside most other oneworld carriers at Frankfurt:  Royal Jordanian has moved its operations at Frankfurt alongside those of most other oneworld carriers, in Terminal 2, leaving American Airlines the alliance's only partner now operating from the airport's older Terminal 1.  Frankfurt is the only airport in the world served by all ten oneworld member airlines.  RJ flies there daily from its Amman hub.

Tell us what you'd like from us - and you could win round-the-world tickets:  Travellers are being invited to tell oneworld what services and benefits they would most like it to offer and their overall vision for the alliance in the decade ahead - for a chance to win a pair of Business Class tickets for travel all the way around the world on its airline members.  The invitation is being made to mark the 10th anniversary of oneworld's launch.  Every idea posted at www.oneworld.com/10years will be reviewed by a jury of airline industry experts, with the author of the best idea winning the pair of round-the-world Business Class.  For full details, terms and conditions, see www.oneworld.com/10years.

About oneworld:  oneworld brings together some of the best and biggest names in the airline business - American Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Iberia, Japan Airlines, LAN, Malév Hungarian Airlines, Qantas and Royal Jordanian, and around 20 affiliates including American Eagle, Dragonair, LAN Argentina, LAN Ecuador and LAN Peru.  Mexicana and its affiliate Click Mexicana will join the alliance in later 2009.  Queste compagnie aeree:

  • Serve almost 700 airports in nearly 150 countries, with some 8,500 daily departures.
  • Offer some 550 airport lounges for premium customers.
  • Carry 330 million passengers a year, employ 300,000 people and operate almost 2,300 aircraft.
  • Generate US$100 billion annual revenues.

oneworld is the only alliance with any member airlines based in Australia, South America or Asia's Middle East.  The alliance enables its members to offer their customers more services and benefits than any airline can provide on its own.  These include a broader route network, opportunities to earn and redeem frequent flyer miles and points across the combined oneworld network and more airport lounges.  

oneworld offers a wider range of alliance fares than any of its competitors.  oneworld was voted the World's Leading Airline Alliance for the sixth year running in the latest (2008) World Travel Awards.   It is the only winner of this award since it was introduced in 2003.