[image1_right] The first airline created after implementation of the Open Skies Agreement has been given the green light by the U.S. Department of Transportation to start a transatlantic service next month.OpenSkies, a premium transatlantic airline from British Airways, will offer flights between Paris’ Orly Airport and New York’s JFK Airport in June.
The Open Skies Agreement, which became effective on 30 March 2008, allows any E.U. airline and any U.S. airline to fly between any point in the E.U. and any point in the U.S.
Dale Moss, Managing Director of OpenSkies said: “As the first airline to be created as a result of the Open Skies agreement, this is a huge step forward as we work to make history and set a new industry standard across the Atlantic. We look forward to bringing travellers an intimate, personalized and premium travel experience between Paris and New York starting in just a few weeks.”
The Department of Transportation also approved OpenSkies’ codeshare arrangement with French airline L’Avion.
“We are extremely pleased and gratified by the DOT’s quick review of our application for a codeshare arrangement with L’Avion,” Moss added.
This formal approval by the DOT enables OpenSkies to start selling tickets for its services. The company will start taking bookings next week via its website www.flyopenskies.com or by phone. OpenSkies will also be available for booking through BA.com and by travel agents using the global distribution systems (GDS) as British Airways codeshare flights.
OpenSkies plans to offer a truly premium and intimate travel experience. The airline will provide superior customer service and innovative features, including 6-foot, fully-flat beds in business class, personal entertainment units with 50+ hours of programming and creative and healthy meal service.
OpenSkies will initially operate one Boeing 757. A second Boeing 757 is scheduled to join OpenSkies later this year from the British Airways fleet and it is planned that there will be six OpenSkies aircraft in total by the end of 2009.
OpenSkies plans to service additional routes from European cities including Amsterdam, Brussels, Frankfurt and Milan to New York.