Lufthansa and Vistara today announced a new codeshare deal which will give Lufthansa access to 18 flights within India. The new codeshare deal between the two airlines will take effect on 16 December.
Lufthansa announced today that it has signed a new codeshare deal with Vistara, India’s sixth-largest airline. The move comes after Lufthansa recently announced its plans to strengthen partnerships with Indian carriers.
Lufthansa had a strong partnership with Jet Airways which collapsed earlier this year, leaving Lufthansa without any notable partnership on the Indian subcontinent.
As reported by Business Traveller, Lufthansa and Vistara already have an interline agreement that allows passengers to travel seamlessly between each other’s networks.
What will the new agreement mean for Lufthansa passengers?
Under the new codeshare agreement, Lufthansa will be able to add its designator code (LH) to 18 different Vistara flights across India.
Cities covered under the new agreement include Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Goa, Hyderabad, Kochi and Pune. The majority of these flights will operate out of New Delhi, which Lufthansa already flies to.
Lufthansa passengers will now be able to access tickets to these destinations through Lufthansa’s website.
Additionally, Lufthansa passengers will receive complimentary meals on Vistara flights as well as being able to choose from three different cabin classes. This includes Vistara’s Premium Economy Class, the only Premium Economy Class currently available in India.
Commenting on the new deal, senior director of sales at Lufthansa, George Ettiyil, said:
“By teaming up with Vistara we will strengthen and expand our position as the leading and most popular European airline in India.”
An important deal for Vistara
While the codeshare agreement applies to Vistara’s network in India, the deal is still important for Vistara. As one of the biggest airlines in Europe, Lufthansa is an important strategic partner for the Indian airline.
Considering the tough domestic competition Vistara faces from other Indian airlines, a deal with Lufthansa will allow it to differentiate itself.
Discussing the new deal in a company statement, Vistara’s Chief Strategy Officer, Vinod Kannan, said:
“As a growing global carrier, one of our key goals is to offer an extended international network to our customers through such strategic associations. Our codeshare with Lufthansa is another important step in this direction and helps us widen our customer base outside of India.”
Currently, Vistara operates a fleet of 38 aircraft – not tiny, but definitely not big by any means. But the airline has big plans for the near future. By March 2020 Vistara will have doubled its fleet size compared to March 2019.
What’s more, the airline will be taking delivery of its first Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner in February 2020. In total it will receive six of the type, which will allow it to significantly strengthen its international route offering.
While Lufthansa was left in an awkward position following the fall of Jet Airways, Vistara has been able to capitalize on the gap in the market.
Not only has it secured a codeshare with Lufthansa, but it also extended its codeshare agreement with Singapore Airlines earlier in the year.