JAL, American to launch joint venture in April
Japan Airlines (JAL) and American Airlines have announced that they will commence their joint business from 1 April 2011. The move will see the oneworld alliance partners share revenues on selected trans-Pacific routes between the US and Japan. The move was given regulatory approval from both the Japanese and US governments last year, and will also see JAL co-locate with American at Terminal 3 of Chicago O’Hare International Airport from 27 March 2011, when the Japanese carrier’s summer schedule begins.
The airlines say that the joint venture will result in a range of benefits for customers, including better flight schedules, expanded ticketing options, more coordinated services, and greater access to a wider variety of fares. Critics say it will lead to a lesser degree of competitiveness on the routes.
Perhaps to ease these fears, JAL and American have announced a commemorative trans-Pacific economy class airfare for sale in Japan. The discounted fares, which are available immediately for travel between 1 February and 31 March 2011, are applicable to routes from Tokyo to San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, New York and Dallas-Fort Worth.
The joint business will apply to direct flights on 10 trans-Pacific routes initially, but is expected to be expanded to destinations beyond Japan and North America when the airlines obtain approval from authorities in other countries.
“We are delighted to begin bringing our customers the benefits of our joint business with American Airlines,” said JAL’s President, Masaru Onishi. “Japan Airlines is strongly committed to our corporate revitalization, and I am confident that this joint business will raise our competitiveness in this vital region, improve our profitability and aid us in achieving our goal.”