DALLAS — The oneworld Alliance is celebrating its 25th anniversary today, with almost nine billion customers flown since its inception. Alliance member airline flights take off or land in 170 territories around the world every six seconds, 24/7.
The founding members of the third-biggest alliance are American Airlines (AA), British Airways (BA), Cathay Pacific (QX), and Qantas (QF). Their objective was to increase connectivity and flexibility for passengers and to reward frequent flyer customers with special benefits and privileges.
Over the years, the alliance has grown to include 13 of the world’s top airlines, such as Alaska Airlines (AS), Finnair (AY), Iberia (IB), Japan Airlines (JL), Malaysia Airlines (MH), Qatar Airways (QR), and more. Fiji Airways (FJ) is a oneworld connect partner, and Oman Air (WY) is set to join as the 14th full member in 2024.
So far, oneworld offers customers access to over 900 global destinations. It also provides access to more than 600 premium airport lounges, additional baggage allowances, the ability to earn and redeem miles across the entire alliance network, and fast-track security lanes at select airports.
Furthermore, oneworld is the only global alliance that provides eligible customers with access to First Class lounges, regardless of the oneworld member airline they fly with.
Most importantly, the alliance boasts more than 330,000 airline professionals across its member airlines. To celebrate the alliance’s 25th anniversary, uniformed staff across member airlines will wear unique pin badges with a specially designed 25th-anniversary logo.
A Brief History of Airline Alliances
The concept of alliances dates back to the 1930s when Pan Am and Panair do Brasil exchanged routes in Latin America. However, modern-day alliances began in the late 1990s to enhance cooperation and provide benefits to both airlines and passengers.
In 1997, five airlines from the Americas, Europe, and Asia founded Star Alliance as the first global aviation alliance. This initiative paved the way for other alliances like oneworld and SkyTeam. These airline partnerships aimed to expand route networks, improve connectivity, and offer seamless travel experiences for passengers.
Today, each alliance consists of multiple member airlines that collaborate to provide benefits such as shared resources, coordinated schedules, codeshare flights, and loyalty program integration. Passengers can earn and redeem miles across alliance networks, access airport lounges, and enjoy other privileges.
Featured image: American Airlines N919NN Boeing 737-800—oneworld Livery. Photo: Luke Ayers/Airways