American Airlines and Qantas have welcomed today their tentative approval by the United States Department of Transportation (DOT) for their joint business venture to travel between North America, Australia and New Zealand.
The final approval of the joint venture will allow the commercial integration between the airlines, offering new routes and significant benefits for clients that would not be possible through another type of cooperation, including:
- The opportunity to launch new routes and flights to new destinations, including pairs of cities currently without service by any of the two airlines.
- An extended code-sharing relationship and optimized schedules in transpacific services, opening more connections to more destinations and reducing total travel time.
- Better access to seats in the network of both airlines, resulting in lower fares
- Additional frequent flyer benefits through greater integration of airline programs, including higher point earning rates, beyond what is possible today through “oneworld”, as well as greater redemption opportunities and better reciprocal recognition from beginning to end of our frequent first-class travelers.
- Joint location in airports, investments in VIP lounges, luggage systems and other infrastructures designed to better serve the customers of both airlines.
As part of the case presented to the DOT, Qantas and American highlighted their intention to launch several new routes within the first two years of the proposed joint venture.
Qantas expects to announce details of two new routes – Brisbane, Australia (BNE) – Chicago O’Hare (ORD) and BNE-San Francisco (SFO) – once the final approval has been received.
“As was evident in the unprecedented level of public support for this application, this joint venture will also create additional jobs in our respective companies and in the industries we serve, “said American President and CEO Doug Parker.
“We thank Secretary Chao and DOT for their careful consideration, and we hope to receive final approval in the coming weeks”
“Qantas and American presented a compelling proposal to DOT that would provide significant benefits to millions of travelers and a boost to tourism,” said Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce.
“For more than 30 years, Qantas and American have connected the United States and Australia as partners. This joint venture means we can deepen our partnership to offer new routes, better flight connections and additional frequent flyer benefits. ”
American and Qantas will review the Order and await a final decision by DOT in the coming weeks.