United Airlines and Air China today announced they have reached a marketing alliance, including cooperation on code share flights, frequent flyer programs and airport lounges, taking an important step toward expanding their networks and better serving the needs of customers.
The marketing alliance between United and Air China will take effect on Oct. 31, when United`s 14 weekly flights (daily Beijing-Chicago and daily Shanghai-San Francisco service) connecting the U.S. with China will carry United`s and Air China`s codes. At the same time, Air China`s 12 weekly flights (four Beijing-Los Angeles, three Beijing-New York and five Beijing-San Francisco) will be operating under Air China`s and United`s flight numbers. In total, the two carriers will offer 26 nonstop code share flights a week between China and the U.S.
“Our new marketing alliance with Air China will provide our customers with more travel options and benefits,” said Glenn F. Tilton, Chairman, President and CEO, United Airlines. “China`s aviation market is growing rapidly, and Air China`s extensive network covers all major business and travel hubs in China. The new relationship with Air China will further expand United`s worldwide network and access to China.”
Air China President, Li Jiaxiang, added, “Air China aims to become one of the world`s major airlines. To align with world-class airlines such as United is a key component of Air China`s globalization strategy. The agreement with United Airlines is an important milestone for Air China.”
Under the agreement with Air China, United will extend its service from Beijing and Shanghai to five other cities via code-share flights operated by Air China carrying United`s codes. The five cities are Guangzhou, Shenyang, Xi`an, Fuzhou and Shenzhen. Air China will also extend its network by adding its flight numbers onto United`s flights from Chicago, San Francisco and Los Angeles to 14 other U.S. cities: Atlanta, Boston, Dallas, Honolulu, Houston, Las Vegas, Miami, Minneapolis, New York, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Portland, Seattle and Washington D.C.
Members of United Airlines` Mileage Plus frequent flyer program and Air China`s Companion frequent flyer program will be able to earn qualifying frequent flyer miles/kilometers on both carriers` code-share flights and redeem awards on all United and Air China flights.
About Air China:
Air China is a subsidiary of China National Aviation Holding Company (CNCH) and was established on October 28, 2002, consolidating the original Air China, China National Aviation Company (CNAC), and China Southwest Airlines.
Air China completed an internal restructuring plan on July 28, 2003. Currently, Air China operates 395 routes, including 73 international and 322 domestic routes and offers 480 scheduled services on a daily basis. It has branch offices in Chengdu, Hangzhou, Chongqing, Tianjin, and Inner Mongolia.
It has a total of 31 domestic offices and 46 overseas offices. Air China ranks first among the Chinese airlines in terms of its total assets, fleet and extensive domestic and international networks.
About United Airlines
United entered China`s market in 1986 and is one of the major U.S. carriers serving China, with 21 weekly flights to Beijing and Shanghai. In 2002, United`s employees broke 35 company records and achieved the best overall operational performance in the company`s 77-year history. United Airlines finished 2002 ranked No. 1 in the industry in domestic on-time performance among major airlines as published in the Department of Transportation`s Air Travel Consumer Report for 2002. United and United Express operate more than 3,300 flights a day on a route network that spans the globe. News releases and other information about United can be found at the company`s web site atÊwww.united.com.