Aer Lingus Signs New Alliance Agreements With British Airways, American Airlines

Nov 25, 1999, 00:00 ET from Aer Lingus

    DUBLIN, Ireland, Nov. 25 /PRNewswire/ -- Aer Lingus announced today that
 it had concluded alliance agreements with both American Airlines and British
 Airways which will lead to a range of new benefits for existing and new Aer
 Lingus customers.
     Among the elements included in the cooperative agreements are frequent
 flier program reciprocity, lounge access interchange and codesharing across a
 range of flights.
     Aer Lingus Group Chief Executive, Gary Cullen, said the finalization of
 agreements with both airlines were a fundamental strategic development for
 Aer Lingus.  "We are delighted to form partnerships with two great global
 airlines, American Airlines and British Airways.  Our aim is to work with both
 carriers to provide our growing number of customers with a wider network of
 services, increased value and extra benefits," he said.
     "We are pleased to welcome Aer Lingus to the AAadvantage frequent flier
 program and we look forward to launching the other elements of our alliance
 as soon as possible," said Don Carty, American's Chairman and Chief Executive.
 "This collaboration demonstrates our ongoing commitment to providing our
 customers with the best frequent flier program in the world, the most
 extensive route network and outstanding value."
     Bob Ayling, British Airways' Chief Executive, said: "British Airways is
 very pleased to be building on our long-standing and successful relationship
 with Aer Lingus to the benefit of the customers of both companies.  Our two
 airlines have a great deal in common with strategies built on providing
 quality services."
     In outlining the principal areas of partnership within the agreements, Mr.
 Cullen highlighted the key benefits which Aer Lingus customers would gain from
 the cooperation. The codeshare agreements will increase the range of flight
 options to Aer Lingus customers by offering more destinations and frequencies.
 Codesharing enables the next best level of service after direct services and
 avoids the need to change airlines, simplifying ticketing and baggage
     These agreements will also mean a significantly increased distribution
 network for Aer Lingus services globally and an enhanced profile for Ireland
 in markets abroad, in particular in the US and other overseas markets.
     Members of the Aer Lingus' Gold Circle Club and TAB programs will benefit
 by earning points for travel on the services of American Airlines and British
 Airways and will be able to redeem points for free travel on services operated
 worldwide by these airlines.
     Effective April 2000, British Airways will codeshare on all Aer Lingus
 flights between Ireland and the UK.  In addition, the code-share will extend
 to a range of British Airways destinations between London and Continental
 Europe destinations including Scandinavia, Switzerland, Italy and Austria.
     American Airlines will codeshare on Aer Lingus' transatlantic services
 between the US and Dublin/Shannon from summer 2000.  Implementation of these
 codeshare agreements and alliance agreements will be subject to the necessary
 regulatory approvals.

SOURCE Aer Lingus