American Airlines and LanChile introduce e-ticket interlining with oneworld to extend it across the alliance by end 2004

14 Juillet 2003

American Airlines and LanChile have become the second pair of oneworld™ carriers to introduce interline electronic ticketing – with the world's most international airline alliance aiming to extend the practice throughout all eight of its members by the end of 2004.

Interline e-ticketing eliminates the need for customers to have paper tickets for travel, thus enabling faster, easier transfers between carriers. Its use is increasing rapidly across the airline industry, and customer acceptance continues to rise. E-tickets are used by nearly 89 per cent of American Airlines' passengers and more than 60 per cent of LanChile's.

E-tickets provide many benefits to travellers. For example, check-in is quicker and smoother, e-tickets cannot be lost or stolen, and they make changes and refunds faster and easier than with paper tickets. E-tickets help eliminate queues at the airport by giving customers access to the speed and convenience of new customer automation features, such as self-service check-in devices and online check in via the internet.

Interline e-ticketing enables customers with electronic tickets more simply to rebook from a flight on one airline to a service operated by another carrier – if the need arises – without having to obtain a paper ticket first and then have that ticket endorsed by a sales agent. If they are traveling on a journey involving a transfer between two airlines, interline e-ticketing means they can be checked right through to their final destination, again without the need for traditional paper tickets, eliminating queues and making connections smoother and more reliable.

oneworld was the first of the global airline groupings to commit to interline e-ticketing, which customers prefer and which provides substantial savings for the carriers. A year ago, oneworld members American and Finnair were the world's first airlines based on separate continents to introduce interline e-ticketing. Interline e-ticketing will be extended by the end of 2004, on a phased basis, across all other oneworld airlines – British Airways, Qantas, Iberia, Cathay Pacific and Aer Lingus.

American offers interline e-ticketing with more US domestic airlines than any other carrier. All types of travel on American's domestic network are eligible for e-ticketing, including award bookings in the AAdvantage® Travel Awards programme. In March, e-tickets were introduced to the AAirpass® program, American's pre-paid travel program.

This is LanChile's first interline electronic ticketing agreement, and it will continue extending agreements with all oneworld partners. LanPerú will be added to the interline electronic ticket agreement with American Airlines, once the LanChile subsidiary launches electronic ticketing on its international routes.

American Airlines' Senior Vice-President Planning Henry Joyner said: "Expanding interline e-ticketing is fundamental to our overall focus on providing customers with the kinds of technology enhancements they value – those which make travel simpler and hassle-free. Interline e-ticketing now means travelers will find connecting between American and LanChile flights to be easier than ever. We are working closely with all of our oneworld partners to make interline e-ticketing a reality across the alliance."

LanChile's General Manager Luis Ernesto Videla said: "LanChile is pleased to announce this very important step toward full electronic ticketing that will substantially improve the service provided to our passengers, simplifying their trips around the world. We have started, together with American Airlines, interline electronic ticketing and continue to work on implementing it with the rest of our partners in oneworld which will bring even more benefits for our customers, achieving our main goal of always providing world-class service."

Between them, oneworld's eight member airlines serve more countries than any global airline alliance, with flights to more than 560 destinations in 136 countries. Members of any oneworld airline's frequent flyer scheme can earn awards and points on eligible fares and redeem them throughout this network. The eight airlines and their affiliates carried more than 225 million passengers last year on a combined fleet of almost 2 000 aircraft, earning revenues of some US$50 billion. In the past three years, oneworld has delivered more than US$2 billion in value to its members, through increased revenue and cost savings.