Kingfisher Airlines joins oneworld alliance
Dubai, February 25, 2010
India’s leading domestic carrier and only five-star airline, Kingfisher Airlines, has joined oneworld, after signing a MoU towards full membership of the world’s leading airline alliance.
The agreement was concluded at a meeting between officials from Kingfisher Airlines and oneworld’s 11 existing member airlines.
Kingfisher Airlines has also applied to India’s Ministry of Civil Aviation for authority to proceed with its membership of oneworld.
A target date for Kingfisher Airlines to join the alliance will be confirmed once this approval is gained. The process to bring any airline on board normally takes around 18 months to complete, so Kingfisher Airlines could be expected to start flying as part of oneworld during 2011.
Kingfisher Airlines’ addition to oneworld will link India’s most extensive domestic network with oneworld’s unrivalled global network, as the only alliance with airlines based on every continent.
It will add 58 cities to the oneworld map – all of them in India. This will expand oneworld’s network to 800 destinations in almost 150 countries, served by a combined fleet of 2,350 aircraft operating some 9,000 flights a day, carrying some 340 million passengers a year.
Established oneworld members American Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Japan Airlines, Qantas and Royal Jordanian already serve five gateways in India between them – Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Hyderabad and Mumbai.
British Airways will support Kingfisher Airlines through its alliance implementation programme, as its oneworld sponsor.
“Becoming part of oneworld would be one of our most significant steps so far - and is right in line with our vision to become one of the world’s top airlines. It will also strengthen us financially, through revenues from passengers transferring to our network from our oneworld partners and the cost reduction opportunities the alliance offers,” said Kingfisher Airlines chairman and chief executive Vijay Mallya.
“Kingfisher Airlines will fill one of oneworld’s few remaining membership spaces with a carrier that matches our alliance’s demanding requirements, benefiting customers by expanding our global reach and helping us ensure oneworld remains the pre-eminent global alliance with members unmatched in brand and service quality,” added oneworld managing partner John McCulloch.-TradeArabia News Service