Star Alliance has welcomed Avianca, TACA Airlines and Copa Airlines as members, thereby cementing its presence in Latin America and adding close to 50 new airports to the network.
The development means passengers will now be able to connect seamlessly through the Copa Airlines hubs in Panama City (Panama) and Bogota (Colombia) and the Avianca, TACA Airlines hubs in Bogota (Colombia), San Salvador (El Salvador), Lima (Peru) and San Jose (Costa Rica).
“On behalf of the Star Alliance Chief Executive Board, it gives me great pleasure to welcome Avianca, TACA Airlines and Copa Airlines to the Star Alliance family,” said Star Alliance chief executive Mark Schwab.
“The addition of these quality aviation groups strengthens our presence in the rapidly growing Latin American market.
“With Avianca, TACA Airlines and Copa Airlines our customers now enjoy increased connectivity across the Americas by connecting through five new Star Alliance hubs right in the middle of the American continent.”
In addition to the network, Avianca, TACA Airlines and Copa Airlines customers will also gain access to the full breadth of the global Star Alliance benefits by using their existing frequent flyer memberships to collect and redeem miles on all member carriers.
Those customers with higher status privileges in the LifeMiles programme of Avianca, TACA Airlines or in Copa Airlines’ Mileage Plus programme will be entitled to the Star Alliance Gold benefits, which offer priority services across the whole network, including extra baggage allowance, priority baggage delivery and access to over 990 lounges world-wide.
At the same time, holders of Frequent Flyer cards of the other Star Alliance member carriers will be offered the Star Alliance Frequent Flyer benefits when travelling on the Avianca, TACA Airlines and Copa Airlines network.
Fabio Villegas, chief executive of AviancaTaca Holding, said: “The integration of Avianca, TACA Airlines into the global Star Alliance network is a milestone in the development of our own merged organisation and the quality of our travel services.
“More than 17,000 employees at Avianca, TACA Airlines are proud to be offering customers a consistently high quality of service right across the globe, at a standard that matches that of the most prestigious airlines on this planet.”
As of today, the Star Alliance network is comprised of 27 members offering more than 21,500 daily flights to 1,356 airports in 193 countries.