DALLAS – The two Star Alliance giants, Turkish Airlines (TK) and Thai Airways (TG), have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the goal of forming a significant joint venture to further expand their presence in the Europe-Asia air travel market.
The agreement will not only improve the current connectivity between the two countries of Türkiye and Thailand but also greatly enhance the passenger flow between the two continents, benefiting from the extent of destination lists of TK in Europe and TG in Southeast Asia.
Bilal Eksi, CEO of Turkish Airlines, said, “This agreement represents an important milestone for the cooperation between Turkish Airlines and Thai. This collaboration will enhance connectivity between the two regions, provide seamless travel experiences, and offer passengers a wider range of destinations and services through both airlines’ networks.”
At the moment of writing, TK operates two daily flights between Istanbul Airport (IST) and Bangkok-Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK) with Airbus A330 family aircraft. Meanwhile, TG is also expected to launch daily services to the Turkish capital, revealing the start day in the coming weeks.
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The Bangkok-based airline is a legendary carrier in the Asian continent and currently serves 42 destinations in 23 countries. In the Asia-Europe market, five of the seven destinations located in the European continent are the main hubs of Star Alliance members SAS (SK) and the Lufthansa Group.
Thai Airways operates a fleet of 50 widebody aircraft, including the Airbus A330, A350, Boeing 777, and 787 versions. The airline had plans to reintroduce the retired Airbus A380 fleet after the end of the pandemic, but the program remains halted until further notice.
In the short-haul market, Thai created a subsidiary under the name of “Thai Smile”, soon to be reabsorbed again by the parent company, which is focused on serving the shorter-range routes mainly to the countries of India, China and Japan, where the largest Asian Star Alliance partners are based at.
Featured image: Turkish Airlines actively operates 335 aircraft, including 14 A350-900s. Photo: Brandon Siska/Airways.