oneworld Launches Website for its Japanese Customers

oneworldTM has launched a Japanese language version of its website. The move forms part of the group’s strategy to increase its revenues earned in Japan and from Japanese consumers around the world - from individual and corporate customers.
The oneworld alliance comprises some of the biggest and best names in the airline world - American Airlines, British Airways, Qantas, Cathay Pacific, Iberia, LAN, Finnair and Aer Lingus. Together, they serve 603 destinations in 136 countries worldwide with around 8,000 departures a day, carrying some 225 million customers last year.

oneworld, the first airline alliance to enable passengers to fly throughout its network using only electronic tickets, with interline e-ticketing in place between all of its partners, is current holder of both major international awards available to airline alliances, as Business Traveller magazine’s Best Airline Alliance and the World Travel Awards’ World’s Leading Alliance.

Its new Japanese website - www.oneworld-jp.com - will feature all the core elements of the main, English language version, giving:

* Flight schedules for all eight oneworld airlines and their 17 affiliated carriers, including a new downloadable timetable.

* Details on the alliance’s unrivalled range of fares and sales products - just the ticket for captains of industry or student backpackers, whether they want to fly right around the world or just explore one continent.

* Information about the alliance’s other services and benefits, including the ability for members of any of its member airlines’ frequent flyer programmes to earn and redeem loyalty awards throughout the oneworld network and for top-tier cardholders to use any of the carriers’ 400 airport lounges whenever they fly with any of the alliance’s carriers.

* News, background information and other media materials.

Its launch comes after a record year for the alliance, with revenues from its sales activities worldwide in 2004 generating almost US$600 million, up by a third year-on-year and growing more than twice as fast as its member airlines’ overall passenger revenues.

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oneworld is the only airline alliance whose members earned a combined profit in the past year - close to US$1.5 billion net, against combined losses by Star carriers totalling more than US$2.2 billion and an overall deficit by SkyTeam’s members in excess of US$7 billion.

oneworld Managing Partner John McCulloch, in Tokyo today, said: “The launch of oneworld’s new Japanese website underlines the importance of the Japanese market to our alliance and our commitment to provide the best alliance service to customers from the country, at home and around the world. It also forms an important element of our strategy to increase oneworld’s share of this market.”

Japan is one of the most important markets for the oneworld alliance, outside the home territories of its eight member airlines. Five of them operate flights to and from Japan - American Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific Airways, Finnair and Qantas - carrying some four million passengers last year.

Between them, they serve five Japanese gateways - Tokyo Narita, Osaka Kansai, Nagoya Centrair, *censored*uoka and Sapporo Chitose - with some 200 departures a week.

Together, they offer direct flights from these airports to 13 destinations around the world - Cairns, Chicago O’Hare, Dallas/Fort Worth, Helsinki, Hong Kong, London Heathrow, Los Angeles, Melbourne, New York JFK, Perth, San Jose (California, USA), Sydney, and Taipei - with smooth connections across the rest of oneworld’s unrivalled network, serving 136 countries.

The alliance’s services to Japan are being increased from a week on Monday (4 April), with American Airlines launching its sixth Japanese route, flying daily non-stops between its Chicago O’Hare hub and the new Centrair gateway at Nagoya. In November, American will also start flying daily non-stops between its Dallas/Forth Worth hub and Osaka Kansai. This will bring AA’s total departures from Japan to 56 a week to five points in the USA.

Also at Nagoya, Cathay Pacific is increasing its frequencies from this Sunday (28 March), with another seven flights a week to Hong Kong, giving a total of 21 a week, including seven via Taipei. This will give the airline a total of 88 services a week from Japan to its Hong Kong base.

Qantas links Japan with four Australian gateways, with a total of 31 departures a week. In addition, its affiliate Australian Airlines, which is not part of oneworld, offers seven flights a week from both Osaka Kansai and Nagoya Centrair to Cairns and three a week from *censored*uoka to Cairns, with international connections from Cairns to the Gold Coast and Sydney. Australian Airlines also operates twice-weekly services in the winter season (ending this weekend) from Sapporo to Cairns.

British Airways maintains double-dailies between Tokyo Narita and London Heathrow, while Finnair has also been building its Japanese frequencies recently, with its Helsinki hub providing one of the shortest and fastest connections between Japan and Euope.

Members of any oneworld airline’s frequent flyer programmes can earn mileage awards on eligible fares when they fly with any of the alliance’s members - and redeem those awards throughout its network. Top-tier members also have access to any of the 400 airport lounges offered by the partners when they fly with any oneworld airline.

Japan is one of only half a dozen countries worldwide and the only territory in Asia in which the alliance has its own full-time dedicated sales manager, with Market Development Manager Soichi Mukai, working with the group’s airlines serving the country to boost the alliance’s revenues. The alliance has enjoyed considerable success in recent years increasing the sales of its unrivalled range of consumer fares and revenues from corporate customers in Japan.

Although its main website has for several years featured some content in languages other than English, its new Japanese website, launched today, is its first full replica site in another language.
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