US Airways will join OneWorld and leave Star Alliance in March 2014
US Airways said it will join OneWorld with effect from 31 March 2014, following completion today of its merger with alliance founding member American Airlines. All its regional affiliates, operating under the US Airways Express brand, will also transition to oneworld at the same time.
Their entry into oneworld with effect from the first flights on 31 March 2014 will follow immediately upon their exit from the Star Alliance with the final flights on 30 March 2014. All parties are taking every effort to ensure that the alliance transition is as seamless as possible for customers.
Until the full integration of American Airlines and US Airways – which will see the combined airline retaining the American Airlines name – US Airways and its regional carriers will operate as oneworld affiliate members, under the American umbrella.
They will offer oneworld’s full range of services and benefits – although some may be phased in shortly after US Airways joins. US Airways, American and theironeworld partners are working to provide the most popular benefits and services on an accelerated timeline.
A thorough communications plan is being developed to brief customers in detail on all the benefits and privileges they will receive with US Airways as a member ofoneworld and as those benefits become available.
During the transition period as they work towards their full integration, American and US Airways will maintain their current loyalty programmes.
US Airways underlined today that all its Dividend Miles cardholders will maintain all miles earned and their tier status. Dividend Miles Preferred members will be sent new membership cards with the oneworld logo, for use from 31 March.
Dividend Miles Chairman cardholders will have the top Emerald status in the oneworld programme. Dividend Miles Platinum and Gold will be equivalent to oneworld Sapphire and Dividend Miles Silver will be oneworld Ruby.
From 31 March, Dividend Miles Chairman, Platinum and Gold members will be able to access some 600 airport lounges worldwide offered by oneworld member airlines when they fly with one of the alliance’s carriers. As oneworld Emeralds, Dividend Miles Chairman cardholders will be able to use First Class lounges, where available – and receive an additional baggage allowance and access fast tracks through departure security at select airports.
All Dividend Miles members will be able to earn mileage and status points when flying on any oneworld member airline from 31 March, but the ability to redeem mileage rewards for flights on other oneworld airlines may be phased in shortly afterwards.
The 140 million members of established oneworld airlines’ frequent flyer programmes will also receive alliance services and benefits when flying on US Airways from 31 March. From day one, this will include the ability to earn mileage and tier status points and, for Emerald and Sapphire cardholders, to access US Airways’ lounges when flying on oneworld departures, although the ability to redeem rewards for flights on US Airways, may be phased in shortly afterwards..
As it becomes part of the group on 31 March 2014, US Airways’ network will be covered by oneworld’s range of alliance fares – the most extensive offered by any of the global alliances.
On its own, US Airways is the fifth largest airline in the USA and one of the 30 largest in the world. With its regional affiliates, it serves more than 200 destinations and 30 countries with a fleet of more than 625 aircraft. It carried 82.5 million passengers in 2012 and currently operates 3,200 departures a day.
It will add 60 destinations to the oneworld map – most in its US home but also three in Canada and one in Mexico – along with its key hubs of Charlotte, Philadelphia, Phoenix and Washington DC’s Reagan National, expanding oneworld’s presence across the USA, particularly throughout the East Coast and across the North Atlantic.
Its merger with American Airlines creates the world’s largest airline on most measures, giving oneworld the leading alliance position in the USA, the world’s largest air travel market. The new American will offer service to more than 330 destinations in more than 50 countries, carrying 190 million passengers a year on a fleet of 1,500 aircraft.