LATAM Airlines says it is moving its operations at New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) to Terminal 4, home to Delta Airlines, as it begins to merge operations following Delta’s closing on a deal that gave it 20% of the Chilean carrier.
The move from LATAM’s current location, Terminal 8, to the other side of New York’s largest airport will be effective from 1 February, the Santiago-headquartered airline says in a statement on 16 January. From that date, LATAM’s top-tier status passengers will also receive lounge access in the new terminal.
“Moving LATAM’s operations at JFK marks another important milestone in our journey towards offering the best connectivity and customer experience in the Americas,” says LATAM Airlines chief commercial officer Roberto Alvo. “We are committed to providing a seamless transition for customers around the globe and are working tirelessly to deliver the benefits of the framework agreement with Delta as soon as possible.”
According to Cirium networks data, LATAM serves its homebase Santiago, Chile as well as Lima and Sao Paolo from the airport while Delta operates flights to more than 90 destinations from its JFK hub. Having both airlines at the same terminal streamlines passengers’ connectivity, the South American carrier says.
Following a Chilean court’s decision to deny American Airlines a proposed joint venture with LATAM Airlines last May, Atlanta-based Delta jumped in to invest $1.9 billion for 20% of the Latin American airline a few months later. The deal closed at the end of December. As part of the transaction, Delta will acquire four Airbus A350 aircraft from LATAM and has agreed to assume LATAM’s commitment to purchase 10 additional A350 aircraft to be delivered between 2020 and 2025, LATAM says.
In December, LATAM announced codeshare alliances with Delta and its Peru, Colombia and Ecuador affilates, and will also do so with its Brazil and Chile affiliates, the airline says. Regulatory approvals are pending.
Subsequently, LATAM also said it was leaving American Airlines’ Oneworld alliance and severed its codeshare ties to the US carrier as of 31 January 2020, leaving American without a major partner in what has traditionally been its strongest region.