ETW Staff – Mumbai
Etihad has launched Etihad Airways Partners, a new brand which brings together like-minded airlines to offer customers more choice through improved networks and schedules and enhanced frequent flyer benefits. Initially, six airlines will participate in the new partnership – airberlin, Air Serbia, Air Seychelles, India’s Jet Airways, Darwin Airline, and Etihad Airways. However, any airline can become an Etihad Airways Partner even if it is part of an existing alliance, such as airberlin, which is a member of oneworld.
James Hogan, president and chief executive officer, Etihad Airways, said, “We are broadening our business model to articulate and define a partner proposition for like-minded airlines which will result in synergies and efficiencies for participating airlines on the one side, and enhanced network choice, service and frequent flyer benefits for the consumer on the other. The Etihad Airways Partners logo is a seal of excellence and global cooperation. It will be displayed on aircraft and on branded materials by a group of airlines working together to connect travellers around the world, and increasingly to harmonise standards in the air and on the ground.”
Hogan said Etihad Airways Partners differed from legacy airline alliances by offering benefits well beyond pure commercial cooperation. “The potential for network alignment to maximise flight connectivity for passengers, together with a shared passion for superior service, are central to the ethos of the Etihad Airways Partner concept. Frequent flyers will benefit from the formation of Etihad Airways Partners as it will remove the complexity and confusion that exists within the global alliances. We’re aiming to deliver a consistent experience for frequent flyers when they travel, as well as a consistent framework for earning and using their miles.”
Etihad Airways Partners will also have access to economies of scale and operational synergies such as centres of excellence, shared sales teams in certain destinations, joint procurement of services and supplies, and shared pilot and cabin crew training at the Etihad Airways facilities in Abu Dhabi.