Air Canada and Spanair form Alliance Partnership

MONTREAL and MADRID, March 20 /CNW/ - Air Canada President and CEO,
Robert Milton, and Spanair Director General and CEO, Enrique Melia, today
signed a commercial agreement to develop an alliance partnership that will
offer improved service for air travellers between North America and the
Iberian peninsula.

The creation of an alliance partnership between Air Canada and Spanair
coincides with Air Canada`s launch April 7, 2002 of non-stop service between
Toronto and Madrid. It also strengthens the connectivity of the Spanish
carrier`s extensive domestic network to that of the Star Alliance global
network, of which Air Canada is a founding member, as well as Scandinavian
Airline Systems (SAS) which is a shareholder of Spanair S.A.

“We look forward to developing a long term, mutually beneficial alliance
relationship with Spanair that will benefit travellers between Canada, Spain
and Portugal,” said Air Canada President and CEO, Robert Milton. “Just as we
prepare to launch non-stop service between Toronto and Madrid, today`s
agreement further extends Air Canada`s network within Europe and strengthens
the range of benefits we offer customers.”

“By means of this alliance, Spanair will have access to Air Canada`s
Toronto hub and also to cities right across Canada and throughout he USA,”
said Enrique Melia, Director General & CEO of Spanair. “Through this
partnership our two airlines will be able to ease travel between Spain and
North America, for the benefit of our customers.”

Provisions in the Air Canada-Spanair agreement cover such key elements as
reciprocal participation in frequent flyer programs, schedule coordination,
through check-in, reciprocal lounge access and, subject to government
approval, codesharing.


Beginning in April 2002, the airlines` schedules and passengers services
will be coordinated to provide travellers with easy one-stop check-in and
conveniently scheduled joint flights between Toronto and three destinations in
Spain: Barcelona, Malaga and Palma de Mallorca. Spanair also offers convenient
connections for flights between Madrid and Lisbon, Portugal.

In addition, reciprocal accumulation and redemption of each airline`s
frequent flyer program miles will result in substantially increased benefits
for Aeroplan and Spanair Plus members.

Spanair, founded in December 1986, operates close to 350 flights per day
to 31 destinations with a fleet of 52 aircraft, including Airbus state-of-the-
art A320 and A321s. Spanair served more than eight million customers in 2001.
  MontrĂ©al-based Air Canada provides scheduled and charter airtransportation for passengers and cargo to more than 160 destinations on five
continents. Canada`s flag carrier is the 12th largest commercial airline in
the world and serves more than 30 million customers annually with a fleet
consisting of more than 300 aircraft. Air Canada is a founding member of Star
Alliance providing the world`s most comprehensive air transportation network.