LONDON – The oneworld alliance has this week announced that Alaska Airlines (AS) will be joining the group later this year.
This means that the airline will be the 14th of its kind to join the group, opening up connectivity with the likes of British Airways (BA), American Airlines (AA), Finnair (AY), and more.
Alaska’s regional carrier, Horizon Air, as well as the regional partner of SkyWest will join as oneworld Affiliate Members at the same time.
Commenting on this news was Brad Tilden, Alaska Airlines’ Chairman and CEO who emphasised great excitement over this deal.
“We’re excited to become a member of oneworld, the industry’s premier alliance, and honored to receive this invitation. This milestone will improve connectivity and service for our guests throughout the West Coast and beyond”.
“oneworld will open up a tremendous international network for our business and leisure travellers when they’re ready to start flying overseas again, in addition to greater connectivity around the U.S.”
“Through our network for international visitors. We’re eager to build deeper ties with the six oneworld members we already cooperate with, and looking forward to working with new partners that are some of the best airlines in the world.”
Good News for American Airlines
Alaska Airlines first announced its intention to join the alliance program back in February 2020 alongside plans to form a U.S-based West Coast International Alliance with American Airlines.
Doug Parker, the CEO of American Airlines commented on this partnership that will take place under oneworld.
“We are thrilled about our new West Coast International Alliance with Alaska Airlines and its entrance into oneworld,”
“Together, we will continue to deliver more value, benefits and choice for customers as we create the leading network on the West Coast and throughout the world.”
More Destinations for oneworld
The addition of Alaska Airlines will also add 34 brand new destinations to the alliance, meaning that the total network growth will grow to more than 1,000 destinations across 170 different territories.
After the transition has been completed, this will make the airline the second to join within a single year, after Royal Air Maroc back in April this year.
For oneworld, adding more destinations means more potential passengers in total, even if it is already handling 540 million passengers per year through a combined fleet of 3,600 aircraft.
This deal will not come as much of a surprise to many anyway, especially with the airline already codesharing with the likes of American Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Japan Airlines, Qantas and Fiji Airways.
Overall, this is big news as Alaska Airlines can now increase its global base to the other members of the alliance while oneworld can tap into destinations it may not have been able to reach previously.