Japan Airlines and Aeroflot have signed a memorandum of understanding for a strategic cooperation agreement to pursue commercial opportunities.
The deal is designed to benefit the customers of both airlines by providing more options for travel between Russia and Japan.
Since the relaxation of visa requirements to the nationals of Japan and Russia from January this year the demand between the two countries has been steadily increasing.
In response, the two airlines have agreed to work together to further stimulate travel between the two countries.
As a first step, JAL and Aeroflot have agreed to start codeshare cooperation between Japan and Russia as well as on some Aeroflot domestic flights.
Japan Airline’s domestic and international flights will also be added to the deal.
The first stage of the codeshare cooperation is planned to be implemented after fiscal year 2018.
In addition to the codeshare cooperation, JAL and Aeroflot will pursue the development of the partnership in various areas, including frequent flyer programs, airport relocation, while considering a joint business in the future.
“As the only airline in Japan operating to Russia for over 50 years, the launch of a forward-looking partnership with Aeroflot demonstrates our strong commitment to this very important market.
“As we jointly started the Tokyo-Moscow flight 50 years ago, this strategic cooperation of mutual benefits will offer both airlines’ customers more options and flexibility,” said Tadashi Fujita, JAL executive vice president.
Japan Airlines currently operates four weekly flights to Moscow Domodedovo Airport from Tokyo Narita Airport using Boeing 787-8 aircraft.
Between July to October 2017, the frequency had temporarily increased to seven flights per week to accommodate the demand during the peak summer season in 2017.
“The Japanese market is a long-standing and important one for Aeroflot.
“We believe that by expanding our partnership with JAL for both direct and transit traffic we will be able to further develop this market by providing more opportunities for our passengers,” said Giorgio Callegari, Aeroflot deputy chief executive for strategy and alliances.
Aeroflot operates daily non-stop flights year-round from Moscow Sheremetyevo Airport to Tokyo Narita Airport.
Flights from Moscow are operated with Airbus 330-300 aircraft.