American Airlines and GOL have deepened their relationship with frequent flier reciprocity agreements. As of May 7th, AAdvantage and Smiles members will receive full frequent flier reciprocity on GOL and American, respectively.
Full frequent flier reciprocity
In addition to full frequent flier reciprocity, AAdvantage members can earn elite status qualifications through travel on GOL. AAdvantage members will also be able to book award travel on GOL. This includes GOL flights within Brazil, as well as flights to the Caribbean and other points in South America.
GOL and American
GOL is one of Brazil’s largest carriers. The airline has Boeing 737-700s, -800s, and MAX 8 aircraft in its fleet. These aircraft lack a business class cabin and only offer premium economy, extra-legroom economy, and standard economy seats.
In terms of network, the airline is more robust in Brazil than it is in other markets. With hubs in Brasilia, Rio de Janeiro-Galeão, São Paulo-Congonhas, and São Paulo-Guarulhos, the airline has an impressive array of domestic connections. Much of this network compliments American’s network offerings.
From Miami, American Airlines flies to Brasilia, Rio de Janeiro-Galeão, and São Paulo-Guarulhos. From New York, AA operates regularly to São Paulo, with seasonal flights to Rio. Additionally, the airline also flies to Guarulhos from Dallas and Los Angeles. As part of this partnership with GOL, American is also adding additional flights to Brazil.
However, most of these connections are currently on hold. American will resume flights from Miami to Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo from June 4th, while Dallas to São Paulo flights will resume on July 7th.
To the United States, GOL only flies to Miami and Orlando. Miami is one of American’s largest hubs and provides strong domestic feed.
American Airlines has been historically strong in South America. The airline flies out to multiple destinations on the continent out of Miami, Dallas, New York-JFK, and Los Angeles. After losing LATAM to Delta, American furthered its commitment to the continent. The strategy behind this, however, is American’s strong hub network in the United States.
Before partnering with American, GOL partnered with Delta Air Lines. Although, Delta dropped that partnership once the airline announced a new collaboration with LATAM. In response, American and GOL joined forces – with this latest move solidifying their relationship.
GOL does not provide the same reach as LATAM. However, it does work better with American’s Brazilian network. In other countries, this is not the case.
The real test of this partnership would have been summer 2020 with LATAM’s departure from the oneworld alliance. However, current market conditions have left this up in the air. How this partnership benefits either carrier will likely be more apparent in the coming years.
We believe that this news of full reciprocal benefits for frequent flier members is just the start as American and GOL further their partnership. In the coming years, both airlines may leverage American’s Miami hub and, perhaps, expand connections between the US and Brazil.
Are you glad to see GOL and American joining forces? Let us know in the comments!