Spanish airline Iberia has announced plans to join British Airways, Japan Airlines and Finnair in their joint services between Europe and Japan, benefitting customers with a choice of more options and increased flexibility, according to an online report by Aviation Tribune.
With the agreement, the four airlines will cooperate on scheduling and pricing between Japan and Europe, providing customers with more flexible routing options and attractive prices. The joint business will offer customers the ability to mix and match flights on all four carriers for the most convenient scheduling and best pricing; online booking capability and check-in with any of the four airlines, regardless of which is being flown; integrated customer support across the four airlines and greater connectivity on all four airlines in case of disruption.
Luis Gallego, President and CEO of Iberia, said: ‘Today is a great day for the Iberia family. We are returning to Japan as a renewed airline, with our newest aircraft and product for our customers, and we do so accompanied by such wonderful partners as British Airways, JAL and Finnair. We are proud to contribute to strengthen the alliance and to the growth of the leisure and business travels between Spain and Japan thanks to the only non-stop flights between the two countries.’
Alex Cruz, chairman and CEO of British Airways, said: ‘We are delighted our sister airline Iberia is joining our Oneworld partners in the joint business. The addition of more European flights to Japan, along with the benefits of co-ordinated schedules and frequent flyer rewards is fantastic news for consumers. Iberia’s direct flights between Narita and Madrid will be a very popular addition.’
Yoshiharu Ueki, President of JAL, said: ‘We welcome our oneworld partner, Iberia, to our home hub in Tokyo today. Japan Airlines is striving to enhance its presence in Europe, and we believe that the start of the four carrier joint business between Europe and Japan will provide more seamless access, consistent services and more travel choices for our customers.’
Pekka Vauramo, CEO of Finnair, said: ‘The addition of Iberia to our existing joint business between Europe and Japan is a great asset and we look forward to working closely with all our partners in this alliance. We are especially pleased with the benefits and opportunities this will generate for our oneworld customers travelling between both continents.’
The addition of Iberia will add Madrid as a fifth gateway, together with Helsinki, London Heathrow, Madrid, Tokyo Haneda and Tokyo Narita, enabling customers to reach over 200 destinations in Europe and 59 in Japan. The Spanish airline has commenced services with thrice-weekly direct Madrid-Tokyo-Madrid flights, the report said.