Qantas and Emirates tie up while Emirates lets go of vaulable code shares with Oneworld members, Europe’s easyJet ends free-for-all seating across its flights, and more items in our roundup of the stories that are making news and driving opinion on 6 September.
Emirates and Qantas Airways will align ticket prices and flight schedules
In its report this morning, the WSJ notes:
The 10-year partnership moves beyond traditional code-sharing, where seats are sold on each other’s planes, and Qantas will shift its Asia long-haul hub to Dubai from Singapore. The companies will also merge frequent flier programs.
Some analysts point out that, though not officially exiting the Oneworld alliance, the world’s biggest international passenger carrier is loosening its ties with Oneworld member British Airways.
Starting in April 2013, Emirates will no longer be constrained about walking all over the interests of British Airways. British Airways will end its 16-year old revenue-sharing agreement on UK-Australia routes.
Similar to Southwest in the US, the Dubai-based airline is eschewing alliances, say some analysts.
It also announced today separate partnerships
Correction, posted on 7 September: “Emirates also said it would complement its relationships with American Airlines, LAN, South African Airways and China Eastern, as well as Oneworld.”
Qantas remains part of Oneworld.
EasyJet will end its seating free-for-all
The airline, which has said it aims to be the number one short-haul carrier in Europe by revenue, decided that its six-month long test of “allocated seating” worked. In November, seat assignments will be standard for the entire fleet.
After so much talk about how the lack of assigned seating brought low-cost carriers savings with faster turnaround times at the gate as well as punctuality, it seems that the savings aren’t enough.
It’s travel conference day!
Expect news on kiosks and other airport and on-board technology today and tomorrow to come out of Vancouver’s Future Travel Experience.
Look for the airline financial insights on the audiocasts being produced for the Deutsche Bank 2012 Aviation and Transportation Conference.
Singapore Airlines launches in-flight connectivity
Today, fliers on Singapore can now access the Internet and mobile data on 14 planes on long-haul routes. OnAir is supplying the $50 million technology. Rates start at $25 per 30 megabytes downloaded, with various promotions.
What India’s Internet success stories can teach travel startups in developing countries
MakeMyTrip found ways to get customers to book travel online even when they didn’t have credit cards. RedBus disrupted the bus system by becoming a platform. Great insights from Sangeet Paul Choudary.
Copa Airlines adds customer service chat to its Facebook page
IntelliResponse provides the “virtual agent technology for the Panama City-based airline, which says it’s the fastest growing airline in Latin America. The Q&A chat is accessible directly from Facebook on Copa‚Äôs Facebook page.
Someone has “mapped” the Internet
It looks like this.
Lonely Planet targets Indian-outbound travelers
In September, Lonely Planet publishes 10 travel guides aimed at Indians traveling to Singapore, Thailand, Dubai, Hong Kong, Bhutan, China, London, Great Britain, France, and Italy. Thirty more guides, including ones for in-country trips, are in the works.