LAN Colombia is now part of oneworld

LAN Colombia today joined oneworld® – offering the leading quality global airline alliance’s full range of services and benefits from the first flights this morning.

LAN Colombia, a company related to LATAM Airlines Group SA (LAN Airlines), has entered oneworld as an affiliate member. LAN Airlines has been a full member of oneworld since 2000. All its other passenger airline affiliates have subsequently joined the alliance as affiliate members – LAN Argentina, LAN Ecuador, LAN Peru and, from today, LAN Colombia – and, it was announced today, TAM will enter oneworld on 31 March 2014 with its Paraguayan affiliate to follow on a date yet to be confirmed.

This will bring all of the components of Latin America’s leading airline group into the world’s leading quality airline alliance, building on oneworld’s position as the first choice airline alliance for frequent international travellers within South America and worldwide.

LAN Colombia was welcomed into oneworld at a ceremony this morning at its Bogota base hosted by LAN Colombia’s Chairman Nicolás Cortázar, its Executive Director Hernán Pasman and its Corporate Director Maria Lara, with oneworld CEO Bruce Ashby, flying in from his New York base, LATAM Vice-President Strategic Alliances Soledad Berrios, from LAN Airlines’ Santiago head office, and senior representatives from the other oneworld airlines serving Colombia, led by American Airlines Managing Director Alliances Latin America Eduardo Marcos, from its Dallas-Fort Worth head office, and Iberia Country Manager María Consuelo Sánchez.

LAN Colombia’s Chairman, Nicolás Cortázar, said: “LAN Colombia is very proud to have joined oneworld. For our company, it represents a significant milestone. For our country, it significantly improves our access to the rest of the world, helping attract more business visitors and tourists, enabling Colombians to reach more of the world’s most important business centres worldwide and making it easier to travel the world from any of the destinations we serve throughout Colombia.”

LAN Colombia’s Executive Director Hernán Pasman added: “To join oneworld is not only a great benefit to our passengers, it is also a demonstration of the high standards that LAN Colombia has achieved since our establishment in the country in 2010. Membership of oneworld underlines our airline’s commitment to service quality and safety.”

oneworld’s CEO Bruce Ashby stated: “We are very pleased to welcome LAN Colombia on board, as the newest oneworld affiliate member of the LAN group and alongside the other LAN airlines that have been such valuable partners for oneworld for many years. Its addition – ahead of TAM’s transition to our alliance on 31 March 2014 – will further strengthen oneworld’s long-standing position as the leading alliance serving Latin America and makes oneworld an even more attractive proposition for frequent international travellers the world over. ”

From the start of operations this morning, LAN Colombia’s cardholders of the LANPASS frequent flyer programme now enjoy privileges whenever they fly with any oneworld member airline – including the ability to earn and redeem awards and earn tier status points when flying on any oneworld airline partner.

These comprise leading airlines from all the key global regions for business travel. Among them are the number one carriers for travel between South and North America, American Airlines, and between Latin America and Europe, Iberia. oneworld’s other established members include Europe’s airberlin, British Airways, Finnair and S7, Asia-Pacific’s Cathay Pacific Airways, Japan Airlines, Malaysia Airlines and Qantas, the Middle East’s Royal Jordanian, plus another 30 affiliated airlines. Five other airlines are lining up to join in the coming months.

LANPASS Comodoro and Comodoro Black cardholders now have Emerald status in the oneworld frequent flyer programme. LANPASS Premium Silver are equivalent to oneworld Sapphire and LANPASS Premium are oneworld Ruby. This entitles them to special privileges when travelling on any oneworld partner, including access to Business Class check-in and, when offered, pre-reserved and preferred seating, and priority on waitlists and on standby when flights are full.

oneworld Sapphire cardholders (LANPASS Premium Silver) also have access to oneworld’s network of hundreds of Business Class lounges on departure and priority boarding. In addition, oneworld Emeralds (LANPASS Comodoro and Comodoro Black) have access to First Class check-in and lounges and to fast tracks through security at selected airports plus an additional baggage allowance.

Also from today, the 140 million members of the other oneworld airlines’ frequent flyer programmes can now earn and redeem awards and tier status points and receive all other oneworld benefits when flying on LAN Colombia.

Meantime, LAN Colombia’s network is now covered by oneworld’s full range of alliance fares and sales products, including its oneworld Explorer round-the-world fare and its Visit South America pass – with TAM’s network to be covered from 31 March.

Through its oneworld partnership with American Airlines, Iberia and British Airways, LAN Colombia is able to offer its customers the most popular gateways for travellers from Latin America, in their Miami, New York, Madrid and London Heathrow hubs.

Since its launch in December 2011, LAN Colombia has quickly established itself as the second biggest airline in South America’s second largest economy. In total, it serves 24 airports in four countries with a fleet of 24 aircraft operating 130 departures a day. It boarded 3.7 million passengers in 2012.

TAM serves 60 destinations in 16 countries in Latin America, the USA and Europe, with a fleet of 161 aircraft operating 800 departures daily. It boarded 38 million passengers in 2012.

Three of oneworld’s existing members – American, Iberia and LAN – already serve three destinations in Colombia, in Bogota, Cali and Medellin. LAN Colombia expands that to a total of 21 Colombian gateways.

Across South America, oneworld’s established member airlines already serve 71 destinations in 11 countries. LAN Colombia and TAM add another 56 airports in the region to that network – with LAN Colombia bringing 18 airports on board and TAM.

Worldwide, with LAN Colombia, TAM and the other airlines lining up to join, oneworld will:

• Serve almost a thousand airports in more than 150 countries, with 14,000 daily departures.

• Carry 480 million passengers a year on a combined fleet of more than 3,200 aircraft.

• Generate US$ 140 billion annual revenues.

The addition of LAN Colombia today and TAM from 31 March represents a cornerstone of oneworld’s biggest membership expansion yet. Other elements elsewhere in the world include:

• The addition of Malaysia Airlines, one of this industry’s most frequent award winners, six months ago, further strengthening oneworld’s position in South East Asia, one of the fastest growing regions for air travel demand.

• The induction on 30 October 2013 of Qatar Airways, the only one of the “Gulf Big Three” carriers slated to join any of the global airline alliances and one of the world’s fastest growing and most highly rated airlines. This will make oneworld the leading alliance in the Middle East, one of the world’s fastest growing regions for air travel demand.

• The introduction early next year of SriLankan Airlines, as the first airline from the Indian subcontinent to join any global alliance, which, with Qatar Airways, will make oneworld the leading alliance in the region.

• The proposed switch by US Airways from Star to oneworld as part of its planned merger with American Airlines, subject to necessary approvals.

Source / Author: oneworld