Continental Airlines and United Airlines Announce Comprehensive Plan for Global Cooperation; Continental Plans to Join Star Alliance
CHICAGO, June 19 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Continental Airlines (NYSE: CAL) and United Airlines (Nasdaq: UAUA) today announced a framework agreement to cooperate extensively, linking their networks and services worldwide to the benefit of customers, and creating revenue opportunities and cost savings and other efficiencies. In addition, Continental plans to join United in the Star Alliance, the most comprehensive airline alliance in the world.
"Continental's plan to partner with United and join the Star Alliance will provide substantial new opportunities for all of our customers," said Larry Kellner, chairman and CEO of Continental. "In a network business, there is significant value gained from linking with larger networks to provide truly national coverage and expanded global reach, and exploring new ways to reduce costs and improve efficiencies. As we experience some of the most challenging conditions airlines have ever faced, we look forward to the benefits of a new relationship with United and the other Star Alliance members."
Kellner and Tilton are meeting in Chicago this afternoon to sign a framework agreement outlining the systemwide alliance and cooperation principles between their carriers.
Antitrust Immunized Joint Ventures
Through this new partnership, Continental and United plan to establish joint ventures allowing them to cooperate with each other and with other Star Alliance airlines in international regions and compete more effectively in an increasingly global air travel market.
Initially, Continental will request the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) to allow it to join United -- along with Lufthansa, Air Canada and six other carriers -- in their already established antitrust immunized alliance. This will enable Continental, United, Lufthansa, Air Canada and other immunized Star Alliance carriers to work closely together as other antitrust immunized alliances do, and to establish trans-Atlantic and other international joint ventures so they can deliver highly competitive flight schedules, fares and service. The planned trans-Atlantic joint venture, in which Continental, United, Lufthansa and Air Canada will pool revenue, will permit the carriers to compete more effectively with the proposed joint venture involving certain SkyTeam members that was recently granted antitrust immunity. The trans-Atlantic joint venture will combine the strength of the carriers to create a more efficient and comprehensive trans-Atlantic network for the carriers' customers.
Joint ventures are also planned for the Latin America and Asia/Pacific regions, involving Continental, United and other members of the Star Alliance. Both antitrust immunity and code-sharing are subject to receipt of approvals from applicable national authorities.
Domestic Codesharing and Frequent Flier/Lounge Reciprocity
Continental's and United's route networks are highly complementary, with little overlap, so they add value to each other and to customers who are planning domestic and international itineraries.
In the United States domestic market, where antitrust immunity for solely domestic travel would not apply, the two airlines plan to begin broad code-sharing, which facilitates the creation of itineraries using both carriers, as well as frequent Flier program, elite customer recognition and airport lounge reciprocity. These cooperative activities are subject to regulatory notice to applicable authorities and Continental exiting certain of its current alliance relationships. Under code-sharing, customers will benefit from a coordinated process for reservations/ticketing, check-in, flight connections and baggage transfer.
Frequent flier reciprocity will allow members of Continental's OnePass program and United's Mileage Plus program to earn miles in their accounts when flying on either partner airline and redeem awards on both carriers. Travel on either carrier will count toward elite customer recognition. Similarly, each carrier's customers will have access to both Continental's Presidents Club network and United's Red Carpet Club network of airport lounges.
Continental Joining Star Alliance
Continental's plans to join the Star Alliance and the other planned cooperation are subject to receipt of certain regulatory and other approvals and the termination of certain contractual relationships, including Continental's existing agreements with SkyTeam members that restrict its participation in another global alliance. Continental intends to terminate its existing agreements with SkyTeam members and obtain the necessary approvals to enter the Star Alliance, although Continental may not be successful, and the time period for doing so may be out of Continental's control. For example, a principal contractual restriction will not terminate until nine months after the closing of the proposed Delta/Northwest merger. Continental intends to transition out of SkyTeam and into the Star Alliance in a customer friendly manner.
Joining the Star Alliance will connect Continental with United and 19 other airlines around the world. Within Star, frequent Fliers enjoy reciprocity with respect to both mileage accrual and redemption among the member airlines. The airlines also reciprocally recognize elite status, and provide access to the worldwide network of lounges operated by the Star Alliance airlines.
Ludavid777 From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 205 posts, RR: 0 Reply 9, posted (5 years 5 months 3 weeks 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 22568 times:
I do have to say I'm going to miss flying AF. Though living in DC UA will come in handy...
Quoting SalMonela (Thread starter): For example, a principal contractual restriction will not terminate until nine months after the closing of the proposed Delta/Northwest merger. Continental intends to transition out of SkyTeam and into the Star Alliance in a customer friendly manner.
I have a ticket on KE to BKK in October, so it is safe to assume CO will still be skyteam then?
Greenair727 From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 514 posts, RR: 0 Reply 13, posted (5 years 5 months 3 weeks 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 22425 times:
Quote: problem is...............the 757...............talk about stretching!! Just not a reality. That was nice about CDG/AMS, w/in reach of CLE.
CLE-FRA can be done with a 752, can't it? If the CLE-CDG is moved to FRA, does that mean AMS won't come to fruition? With Spanair and TAP in Star, how about CLE-LIS 4x and CLE-MAD 3x on CO (if AMS is out of the picture)?
Jacobin777 From United States of America, joined Sep 2004, 14968 posts, RR: 61 Reply 18, posted (5 years 5 months 3 weeks 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 22327 times:
From the article...
"teams from the two organizations worked intensively over the last several weeks exploring creative solutions for how the two companies could achieve efficiencies and synergies that expand beyond the well-established benefits of codesharing. Their work focused on plans for significant cooperation on frequent flier programs, lounges, facility utilization, information technology and procurement. This work was assisted by the efficiency opportunities identified and relationships developed during the parties' earlier merger discussions"
" Kellner and Tilton are meeting in Chicago this afternoon to sign a framework agreement outlining the systemwide alliance and cooperation principles between their carriers."
I thought Tilton was only hell-bent on selling out the company and enriching himself with his stock options..
ERJ170 From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 6695 posts, RR: 18 Reply 20, posted (5 years 5 months 3 weeks 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 22283 times:
Hahahahahaa.. so this means HELLO Continental.. Bye Bye US Airways..
Star Alliance does not need US afterall.. CO brings a NY area hub and an oil country hub.. US will be taking.. what? PHL, PHX, and CLT? I don't think those areas will be missed very much.. as great as they all are in their own way, I don't think it will be that big of a problem..
BP1 From United States of America, joined Aug 2007, 584 posts, RR: 1 Reply 21, posted (5 years 5 months 3 weeks 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 22278 times:
Can we get UA and CO to share the US terminal at PHX Sky Harbor Terminal 4? Although UA and CO already share at the outdated Terminal 2 at Sky Harbor it would be great to get them under the same umbrella so we would have UA, CO & US working all together in one Terminal. That might also help the City of Phoenix as they get ready to update T2.
So glad to see another real airline join the one really global alliance - Star Alliance.
"First To Fly The A-380" / 26 October 2007 SYD-SIN Inaugural