On Wednesday, Alaska Airlines officially became a member of the Oneworld Alliance. A milestone in its 89-year history, the airline has become the 14th full member of the global association, just eight months after receiving a formal invitation from oneworld in July 2020.
Alaska Airlines CEO, Ben Minicucci said, “Joining oneworld is joining a family of the best airlines in the world. Being a part of the alliance allows us to provide fantastic global connectivity, a seamless travel experience and more valuable loyalty offerings for our guests. This alliance transforms Alaska into a truly global airline, connecting our strong West Coast network and destinations across North America with the worldwide reach of our oneworld partners.”
Alaska Airlines and oneworld hosted a virtual celebration and news conference on Wednesday, in the airlines home town, Seattle. Airline members of oneworld from different parts of the world welcomed Alaska Airlines to the alliance with a video greeting, providing versions of employees performing the Alaska Safety Dance.
Oneworld CEO Rob Gurney, who joined Minicucci in Seattle for the occasion said, “With Alaska Airlines now part of oneworld, we are excited to offer to customers even more destinations and flights, strengthened by Alaska’s leading network on the U.S. West Coast. For oneworld top-tier customers, the joining of Alaska will provide even more opportunities for their status to be recognized as we look forward to a recovery in international travel.”
The alliance with oneworld will provide Alaska airlines a global network of flights to over 1,000 destinations globally. Alaska Airlines already had a bilateral agreement with six oneworld airlines namely British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Japan Airlines, and Qantas and Qatar Airways. Now being a member of oneworld the airline has officially added a few more airlines to the mix, including Iberia, Malaysia Airlines, Royal Jordanian and Sri Lankan Airlines, among others.
All members of the Alaska Airlines loyalty program can earn miles when they fly any of the other 13 member airlines. In the coming months, members of the loyalty programme will also be able to redeem miles for flights on airlines that Alaska did not have previous partnerships with.
Oneworld Governing Board Chairman and Qantas Group CEO, Alan Joyce was delighted to welcome Alaska Airlines to the oneworld family. He explains that as the industry recovers from COVID, airline alliances are going to be more important than ever. Alaska will be an asset to the alliance, positioning oneworld to deliver even more value to our customers and member airlines.