Virgin Atlantic Shakes Up Transatlantic Market With Air France-KLM Codeshare

Flying over the Atlantic Ocean on Virgin Atlantic, Delta or KLM-Air France just got easier.

Earlier today the three carriers joined in a codeshare agreement, opening new routes between the US, Canada and Europe. The partnership means fliers will now be able to book one ticket itinerary that covers all included airlines. Passengers with mileage accrual accounts will also benefit by  earning miles on previously non-included airlines.

Boing 787 in Netherlands
B787-900 above the tulip fields. Photo: KLM

New routes on Virgin Atlantic from the UK to North America

The partnership brings up to 58 new routes to Virgin Atlantic from 18 airports in the UK. The routes cross the Atlantic Ocean via Amsterdam and Paris on KLM or Air France. New routes include London Heathrow to Chicago via Paris and Edinburgh to Toronto via Amsterdam.

KLM and Air France new routes across the Atlantic

Air France and KLM will use Virgin Atlantic and Delta flights to serve customers flying across the Atlantic. The partnership includes 24 new routes with heavier frequency from Amsterdam to Miami via London Heathrow and more options between Paris and New York via Manchester.

Last month KLM-Air France saw an increase in Dutch government investment, protecting their interest in their national carrier.

Air France Premium Economy A330
In-flight on Air France A330. Photo: Air France

Delta’s new routes

Delta’s already successful partnership with KLM-Air France and Virgin Atlantic is further built upon with this joint venture, allowing travelers flying on Virgin Atlantic to transfer to any Delta flight in Amsterdam or Paris. The transfer will be seamless with one ticket and itinerary. KLM and Air France see similar benefits, opening routes between the UK to North America on Delta operated flights via the UK or on non-stop service.

This codeshare program piggybacks Delta’s new partnership set on Feb. 14 with EasyJet to potentially rescue the financially struggling Alitalia.

Later in 2019, pending final regulation clearance, Delta, KLM-Air France and Virgin Atlantic plan to expand their joint venture. This $13 billion transatlantic partnership will bring over 300 flights across the Atlantic to 340 destinations. 108 of those routes will be non-stop.