LAN Colombia joins oneworld, Brazil’s TAM to follow in March 2014
|Monday 14 October 2013||Text by Carlos Ay under Commercial air transport|
Earlier this month, LAN Colombia announced that it had officially joined oneworld®, thus offering its passengers the leading global airline alliance’s full range of services and benefits effective 1 October 2013. Also on 1 October, TAM Airlines announced that it will join the alliance as of 31 March next year.
TAM’s entry into the alliance strengthens oneworld with the addition of the leading carrier in Brazil, the country with the region’s strongest demand and largest economy. The addition of these two airlines will also establish oneworld as the leading alliance for flights within Latin America and between the region and both the United States and Europe, the most in-demand international destinations for LATAM passengers.
LAN has been a member of oneworld since 2000 and all LAN subsidiary passenger airlines have joined it as affiliate members, including LAN Argentina, LAN Ecuador and LAN Peru. TAM’s Paraguayan affiliate will also become part of oneworld at a date to be announced at a later time.
LAN Colombia was welcomed into oneworld at a ceremony held at the airline’s Bogotá headquarters. Attending were LAN Colombia’s main executives, oneworld CEO Bruce Ashby, LATAM Airlines Group’s Vice-President (Strategic Alliances) Soledad Berrios and senior representatives from other oneworld airlines serving Colombia, including American Airlines Managing Director (Alliances Latin America) Eduardo Marcos and Iberia’s 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.”
“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”, underscored LAN Colombia’s Executive Director, Hernán Pasman.
In turn, oneworld’s 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.”
Speaking for the Brazil subsidiary, TAM’s CEO Claudia Sender noted “we want to introduce Brazil to our new partners and welcome them into our country. In the coming months, we will continue working to ensure a smooth transition for everyone. We also want our passengers to learn about the benefits, connections and products offered by oneworld so they can travel the world with us.”
New benefits for frequent flyers in LAN Colombia and oneworld
Effective 1 October, LAN Colombia LANPASS frequent flyer program members 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, including American Airlines, Iberia, air Berlin, British Airways, Finnair, S7, Cathay Pacific Airways, Japan Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, Qantas, Royal Jordanian plus another 30 affiliated airlines.
LANPASS Comodoro and Comodoro Black cards now have Emerald status in oneworld. LANPASS Premium Silver is equivalent to oneworld Sapphire and LANPASS Premium equals oneworld Ruby. This entitles their owners 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.
Sapphire/Premium Silver members also have access to oneworld’s network of hundreds of Business Class lounges on departure and priority boarding. In addition, Emerald/Comodoro/Comodoro Black customers in turn have access to First Class check-in and lounges and to fast tracks through security at selected airports as well as an additional baggage allowance.
Also, 140 million members of other oneworld airlines’ frequent flyer programs can now earn and redeem awards and tier status points and receive all other oneworld benefits when flying on LAN Colombia.
Expansion for LAN Colombia, LATAM and oneworld
Through its oneworld partnership with American Airlines, Iberia and British Airways, LAN Colombia is now able to offer its customers the most popular gateways for Latin American travellers in their Miami, New York, Madrid and London/Heathrow hubs.
Three of oneworld’s existing members – American, Iberia and LAN – already serve three destinations in Colombia, in Bogotá, Cali and Medellín. 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 will add another 56 airports in the region to that network – with LAN Colombia bringing 21 airports on board and TAM 35 – giving oneworld one of the most extensive alliance coverages of the continent.
Worldwide, with LAN Colombia, TAM and five other airlines lining up to join, oneworld will serve almost 1,000 airports in more than 150 countries, generate 14,000 daily departures, carry 480 million passengers a year on a combined fleet of more than 3,200 aircraft and generate US $ 140 billion in annual revenues.
Source: LATAM Airlines (official).