Alaska Airlines will join Oneworld alliance as a full member by mid-2021, allowing American Airlines to connect flights through the Seattle-based carrier’s West Coast network.
“By connecting American’s strength in long-haul international flying and Alaska’s presence across the West Coast, we will build a better network for our customers than either airline could build alone,” American Airlines president Robert Isom says in a statement.
American will begin its new partnership with Alaska by launching daily flights in October from Seattle to Bangalore, India, the first ever direct route between those two cities. American will also begin service in March 2021 from Seattle to London Heathrow airport.
The deal halts a previously announced plan by Alaska to shrink its codeshare partnership with American and offerings for frequent fliers beginning in March as part of its growth after purchasing Virgin America. The two airlines instead state they will continue their domestic codeshare relationship, expanding it on West Coast international routes from Seattle and Los Angeles and increasing access for frequent flyer program benefits.
Alaska is poised to expand its network in California with eight new routes in 2020, with its regional airline partners include Horizon Air and SkyWest Airlines operating most of the new flights.
The Seattle-based airline already has codeshare partnerships with Oneworld members British Airways, Qantas, Cathay Pacific, Finnair and Japan Airlines.