LAN Argentina & Ecuador to join oneworld

oneworld is
strengthening its position in Latin
America with the addition of two more airlines in the region—LAN
Argentina and LAN Ecuador.The two airlines—members of the LAN Airlines group—will become
affiliate members of oneworld as soon as joining technicalities can be
completed. All parties have committed to ensure this takes place as early
as possible in 2007.
  Both airlines will then offer oneworld’s full range of services and
benefits. This means their frequent flyers will be able to earn and redeem
mileage awards on all other oneworld carriers, with top-tier members able
to gain access to the 400 airport lounges worldwide offered by the
alliance’s airlines. Members of other oneworld airlines will be able to
earn and redeem awards and receive all other oneworld benefits on both LAN
Argentina and LAN Ecuador. The two airlines’ networks will also be covered
by oneworld’s extensive range of alliance fares.
  “I’m delighted to welcome LAN Argentina and LAN Ecuador on board
oneworld,” said oneworld Managing Partner John McCulloch. “Both offer a
level of service to match the best in the world, in keeping with oneworld’s
overall emphasis on quality. With our extensive presence in Latin America
already, their addition strengthens oneworld’s position as the leading
alliance serving this region.”
  “It is with great pride that I announce the addition of LAN Argentina
and LAN Ecuador to oneworld,” said LAN Airlines Chief Executive Enrique
Cueto. “The high quality and safety standards of the service they provide
to passengers have earned them membership in this prestigious alliance
formed by the world’s top airlines. Without any doubt this constitutes a
clear recognition of our on going commitment to our customers and our
determination to deliver an excellent quality product that meets the
highest standards of international safety.”
  With Chile-based LAN Airlines a full member of the alliance since June
2000, along with its domestic subsidiary LAN Express and Peruvian airline
LAN Peru as affiliate members, the latest additions mean oneworld will have
five Latin American airlines in its grouping.
  The two new affiliates will considerably broaden the alliance’s network
within Latin America through the addition of a domestic schedule within
Argentina and regional international service to and from Argentina and
Ecuador, besides expanding its links between the region and North America
and Europe. LAN Argentina will also add four destinations to the oneworld
map—Iguazu (IGR), Comodoro Rivadavia (CRD), Rio Gallegos (RGL), and El
Calafate (FTE).
  oneworld partner American Airlines has extensive service to Latin
America, serving more than 15 countries in the region. Additionally, Iberia
has the most direct flights between Europe and Latin America, and British
Airways also flies to several cities in South America.
  The addition of LAN Argentina and LAN Ecuador also builds further on
oneworld’s position as the leading Spanish-speaking alliance.
  The two airlines received the green light to join oneworld at a recent
meeting of the alliance’s Governing Board. With the other members of the
LAN group already part of oneworld, bringing LAN Argentina and LAN Ecuador
on board oneworld will be simpler and speedier than adding completely new
recruits to the grouping.
  The LAN Argentina and LAN Ecuador addition accelerates what was already
oneworld’s biggest expansion program in its history, with Japan Airlines,
Malev Hungarian and Royal Jordanian preparing to join early next year,
taking the alliance’s network to nearly 700 destinations in almost 150
  In addition to LAN Airlines, American, Iberia and British Airways,
oneworld’s other existing members include Qantas, Cathay Pacific and
Finnair, plus a dozen affiliates. Another five affiliates will join with
Japan Airlines’ addition to the alliance.