Etihad Airways has developed a new partnership scheme with several of its equity affiliates.

The Abu Dhabi carrier's chief executive James Hogan foresees that the initiative branded "Etihad Airways Partners" – will create "synergies and efficiencies for participating airlines on the one side, and enhanced network choice, service and frequent-flyer benefits for the consumer on the other".

Hogan argues that Etihad Airways Partners differs from legacy airline alliances by offering benefits beyond pure commercial co-operation.

Etihad Airways Partners will initially consist of Etihad, Air Berlin, Air Serbia, Air Seychelles, India's Jet Airways and Darwin Airline, which operates as Etihad Regional. However, Etihad stresses that "any airline can become an Etihad Airways Partners, even if it is part of an existing alliance".

The new brand will include "standardised mileage and tier benefits across all partners, no blackout periods and priority services", adds Etihad.

Members will have shared sales teams in certain destinations, engage joint procurement of services and supplies, and have access to pilot and cabin crew training at Etihad facilities in Abu Dhabi.

Source: Cirium Dashboard