In a major expansion, Air France, Delta Air Lines and Virgin Atlantic have formally launched their new codeshare programme between each other.
The programme should create some new transatlantic travel opportunities between North America and Europe, with chances to earn frequent flyer miles, seamless connections on a single booking reference.
The codeshared flights will allow mileage accrual on any of the three codeshare partners, allowing passengers to earn and redeem miles via their preferred loyalty scheme.
So what improvements are on the line:
- For Virgin Atlantic passengers, more options from the regions via Paris CDG and Amsterdam Schipol, opening up 18 more airports and 58 codeshared routes.
- Air France and KLM increase connectivity via Heathrow or Manchester Airport, adding 24 new routes via the UK
- For Delta passengers, add all of the above together for connectivity and miles, as well as additional options to cities the airline doesn’t serve, through the codeshares
This all translates into feed for the long-haul operations of Air France, Delta, KLM and Virgin Atlantic.
Next Steps: The joint venture agreement
The work of the codeshare is the precursor to an expanded joint venture agreement between the airlines – due in 2019. The joint venture when finalised and cleared by regulators will offer over 300 daily trans-Atlantic flights, 108 non-stop routes, and over 340 destinations.
For those earning miles, however, the ability to book on codeshares and get mileage credit will be a welcome thing to see.
After all, who likes wasted frequent flyer miles?
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