Launch of code-sharing between American Airlines and Cathay Pacific 'key landmark in oneworld's development'

29 January 2003

Today's launch of code-sharing between American Airlines and Cathay Pacific Airways is a significant landmark in the development of their oneworld™ global airline alliance, says the grouping's Managing Partner Peter Buecking.

It means that code-sharing is now in place between 18 of the potential 28 pairings of oneworld's member airlines – American Airlines, Cathay Pacific, British Airways, Qantas, Iberia, LanChile, Finnair and Aer Lingus – making it easier for customers to transfer between their networks and reach the 550 destinations they serve on a combined basis.

oneworld Managing Partner Peter Buecking said: "oneworld's key strategy is to increase the benefits it provides its customers and shareholders by deepening the levels of co-operation between its members. After a three-year wait for the necessary regulatory agreements, today's step by American Airlines and Cathay Pacific represents a significant landmark in the implementation of this strategy by our North American and Asian partners.

"For customers, today's launch makes travel between Asia and the US smoother and simpler. For our member airlines it should increase revenues in these difficult times for our industry. It should also support the development of Hong Kong as a leading aviation hub."

Cathay Pacific's CX flight code is from today placed on services by American and its American Eagle affiliate to 20 cities across the USA, with connections to and from Cathay's own flights between its Hong Kong hub and its US gateways of Los Angeles, New York JFK and San Francisco. Destinations include Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth, Denver, Detroit, Fort Lauderdale, Houston George Bush and Hobby airports, Las Vegas, Miami, Newark, Orlando, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, San Diego, San Jose, San Juan, St Louis and Washington Baltimore, Dulles and National airports.

At the same time, the AA code is now added to Cathay Pacific flights between its Hong Kong hub and its US gateways of Los Angeles, New York JFK and San Francisco and on Cathay services connecting to its own flights at Tokyo. American customers will in addition be able to travel beyond Hong Kong to other cities in Asia.

American Airlines Chairman and Chief Executive Don Carty said: "Our customers will be able to make all of their arrangements to fly from the US to Hong Kong and on to other points in Asia by making one phone call to American Airlines. They will find this new feature of our oneworld relationship immensely valuable when it comes to the convenience of world travel."

Cathay Pacific Deputy Chairman and Chief Executive David Turnbull said: "Our code-share agreement with American Airlines demonstrates the benefits that can be gained by airlines and passengers when oneworld partners work closer together. Cathay Pacific will be able to provide a much-improved service to our customers heading to and from North America. Moreover, the increased passenger traffic that will be generated by this partnership will help to strengthen Hong Kong's position as Asia's regional aviation hub - in itself a very important goal."

In other recent steps to deepen links between oneworld carriers, improving benefits for customers and member airlines:

  • Aer Lingus and Iberia have just extended their code-sharing agreement, with the IB code now also placed on the Irish carrier's flights between London and Dublin, and on its flights serving Cork and Shannon to and from both Dublin and London, making it easier to travel between Ireland and Spain. The two airlines already shared codes on one another's services between Dublin and both Barcelona and Madrid.
  • American Airlines and British Airways have applied for US regulatory approval to offer code-share services permitted under the current US-UK air services agreement – on "behind and beyond" flights and UK regional transatlantic routes - making it even smother for passengers to transfer between the two airlines' networks.
  • American Airlines and Qantas recently moved closer together at major oneworld hub Los Angeles International Airport with the Australian airline now using AA's new immigration facilities at the airport's Terminal 4, speeding passengers' journeys on the ground on arrival and easing transfers for those taking its code-share flights with American to other US destinations. The QF flight prefix has also been added to a 16th destination in North American through its code-sharing with AA – Denver.
  • British Airways and Iberia have expanded their code-sharing arrangements to cover their services between their London Heathrow and Madrid and Barcelona bases as they deepen their bilateral working relationship to cover areas such as joint network planning, co-ordinating capacity and pricing and sharing more airport facilities to improve transfer services at their main hubs.
  • LanChile and Qantas have linked their Santiago and Sydney home bases by direct flights for the first time. The South American carrier is now flying the route three times a week, via Auckland, with its services also carrying the QF code, shaving hours off the previous fastest journey time between the two cities. The QF code is also placed on LanChile connections at Santiago to and from a range of Latin American destinations.

    Between them, oneworld's eight member airlines - Aer Lingus, American Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific Airways, Finnair, Iberia, LanChile and Qantas Airways –serve more countries than any global airline alliance, with flights to 570 destinations in 135 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.