Friday, October 01, 2021

American, United add new airline partners in India, South Africa

American Airlines and United Airlines are both making friends in new frontiers.

This week, both carriers unveiled partnerships with local airlines based in some of their highest-profile new destinations. American Airlines is teaming up with IndiGo, one of the largest domestic airlines in India, while United is partnering with Airlink in South Africa.

American Airlines is about to commence service to India once again — it last flew there nearly a decade ago — with flights between New York-JFK and New Delhi (DEL) taking off on Oct. 31, followed by much-anticipated service between Seattle (SEA) and Bangalore (BLR) on Jan. 4, 2022.

To provide additional feed beyond the two metropolises, American will codeshare with IndiGo, one of India’s leading low-cost carriers, on 29 domestic routes. This way, American can offer a slew of one-stop itineraries to appeal to travelers heading beyond the large cities and help expand AA’s catchment in the country.

For IndiGo, the codeshare will help fill seats on its domestic flights, and bring its name to a new market. IndiGo CEO Ronojoy Dutta said in a statement that “we are confident that this will be a strong partnership that will create many opportunities for trade and tourism through IndiGo’s seamless nationwide connectivity.”

Additionally, American’s AAdvantage loyalty members can earn miles when traveling on IndiGo codeshares. First- and business-class travelers on AA’s long-haul flights can relax in one of IndiGo’s partner airport lounges before their domestic connection.

However, since IndiGo is a low-cost carrier, the airline’s planes are outfitted in an all-economy configuration, meaning that premium-cabin passengers will need to connect in coach to their final destination.

01/10/21  Zach Griff/Points Guy

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