The project between Virgin Atlantic, Delta, Air France, and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines has officially taken off. The carriers’ transatlantic services can essentially now be operated as a single joint venture.
According to a joint press release, the venture covers up to 341 peak daily transatlantic services across 110 direct routes.
Onward connections to 238 cities in North America are also part of the agreement, along with 98 connections in continental Europe and 16 in the United Kingdom.
The airlines hope to give customers more convenient flight schedules and smoother travel experiences with the partnership. They also hope to enable greater flexibility by offering the ability to book their flights on any of their platforms.
Additionally, from February 13th, frequent flyer program members will be able to earn and use miles or enjoy benefits for flights conducted by any of the four firms. Transatlantic, intra-Europe, and domestic US journeys are eligible for these bonuses.
New codeshare services will be launched under the agreement. Transatlantic schedules will also be aligned. This will help the airlines to reduce connection times. Passengers will also soon be able to check-in and select seats through any of the involved parties’ mobile apps or websites.
Virgin Atlantic CEO Shai Weiss shared how passenger experience will be at the core of the partnership. He states that fliers will see a range of benefits following the move.
“Customers are at the heart of this expanded joint venture with our partners Delta, Air France and KLM, where seamless connections, a greater range of flights, unrivalled customer service and increased frequent flyer benefits will reinforce its position as the choice passengers most love to fly,” Weiss said, as per the press release.
“One of the pillars of our strategy is successfully collaborating with our partners. Combining our strengths, our network, and our people allows us to achieve more together.”
Delta CEO Ed Bastian is also excited to offer better services with the expanded partnership. He shared that the move is a step forward to deliver greater reliability and top travel benefits. He concluded that the airlines’ long-standing collaboration will offer a partnership that will set it apart from the rest of the industry.
Air France-KLM Group CEO Benjamin Smith also noted that the shared history of the carriers will now be taken to greater heights. He added that with Virgin Atlantic’s presence, the collaboration is strengthened even further.
Altogether, the joint venture gives each airline greater opportunities to reach passengers on operations across the Atlantic. Air France-KLM even admits that this move gives it better access to the United Kingdom, especially London Heathrow, which the airline states is the leading global travel market.
Therefore, each carrier will be glad to have a stronger alliance during a sensitive time in the aviation industry.
What are your thoughts on this partnership between Virgin, Delta, and Air France-KLM? Let us know what you think in the comment section.