Qatar Airways is to join the oneworld airline alliance on 30 October, it has announced.
The carrier will become the first of the three large Middle East airlines to join an airline alliance, with Emirates and Etihad currently happy to go it alone without one behind them.
Qatar Airways’ entry will come a year after it was announced it would join the alliance in October 2012, meaning its induction is quicker than the average 18 months.
Once a member the airline will be able to create more commercial tie-ups and frequent flyer benefits with other oneworld members which include British Airways, American Airlines, Finnair, Cathay Pacific, airberlin, Japan Airlines, Iberia, Malaysia Airlines, LAN, Qantas, Royal Jordanian and S7.
In preparation the airline has already announced a loyalty programme tie-up with British Airways which allows frequent flyer members of both airlines to earn and redeem miles on each other’s flights.
Qatar Airways has already been part of the Global Explorer round-the-world fare offered by oneworld.
“In Qatar Airways’ relatively short history, we have quickly established a reputation for innovation, quality and excellence in everything we do. We are pleased to build on that by becoming the only major airline from the Gulf to date to be joining any of the global airline alliances,” said Qatar Airways’ CEO Akbar Al Baker. “We are proud to entering the best of them, in oneworld – and to be doing so in record quick time.”
oneworld additions 2013-2014
- Malaysia Airlines joined earlier this year
- TAM will join when it is merged with LAN to make LATAM Airlines in Q2 2014
- SriLanka Airlines will become a member in H1 2014
- US Airways would switch to oneworld if merger with American Airlines is confirmed