Sri Lankan Airlines joins ‘Oneworld alliance’
IATA Annual General Meeting at World Trade Hotel:
The announcment on the screen
Aviation history was created for Sri Lanka when the national carrier,
SriLankan Airlines joined the elite group of ‘Oneworld alliance’ at the
beginning of the 68th IATA Annual General Meeting (AGM) and World Air
Transport Summit at the World Trade Hotel here yesterday.
“The quality of service maintained by SriLankan airlines was the key
to it being linked to this network,” said John Slosar CEO of Cathay
Pacific which assited SriLankan airlines to get in to this alliance.
“The timing is perfect as Sri Lanka’s economy is doing very well,”
Tom Hortan from American Airlines said.
This liaison would first add global prestige to the airline as it
would be linked with 824 new destinations all over the world and it
would fly alongside some of the biggest and best brands in the airline
SriLankan chairman, Nishantha Wirckaramsinghe, CEO of SriLankan
airlines, Kapila Chandrasena executives of the Oneworld alliance
with the logo. Picture by Shirajiv Sirimane
It would also give passengers using Sri Lankan Airline numerous
benefits, such as purchasing air tickets to any part of the world and
passengers would get greater support. The Fly Smiles loyalty card
members would be able to add points when flying with other airlines
attached to this alliance and they would also get to use the lounges in
over 150 countries.
"Oneworld", is one of the world's three largest global airline
alliances with its central management team, based in New York City, New
York, USA. 'Oneworld' was founded in 1999 by American Airlines, British
Airways, Canadian Airlines, Cathay Pacific, and Qantas. The 'Oneworld'
has over 900 flights taking off each day and Sri Lanka’s passengers
could purchase tickets to this.
CEO of SriLankan Airlines, Kapila Chandrasena making the announcement
last morning said that joining the alliance would help to put SriLankan
Airlines more firmly on the global aviation map and vastly improve Sri
Lanka’s connections with the rest of the world. “This would also be a
major boost to Sri Lanka’s tourism sector,” he said.
“The additional revenues that flow from this alliance would help to
further strengthen SriLankan Airlines,” he added. He said that to meet
with the standards of 'Oneworld 'systems the airline would have to
change some systems and these would fall into place next year.
The 200,000 Fly Smile card members will be able to earn and redeem
rewards on any of 'Onewolrd’s ' other carriers, with top thier members
able to use any of the group’s 550 plus airport lounges, and its network
will be covered by 'Oneworld’s' market leading range of alliance fares.