British Airways may be facing the breakup of its joint venture with Qantas, but the UK flag-carrier has already embarked on a new relationship with Japan Airlines.
The joint business agreement covers flights between Europe and Japan and is all about "providing better links between Japan and Europe, greater choice of flights to more destinations, enhanced frequent flyer benefits and the potential to launch new routes", BA ands JAL promised in a joint stamenrt.
There's also a bonus for top-tier members of BA's Executive Club and JAL Mileage Bank, with the airlines promising those high flyers "will now have more opportunity to earn bonus points on applicable flights on either airline, while JAL members will also get to accrue more mileage now than before when flying with British Airways."
Another score for business travellers will be the debut of JAL’s new seats on the London-Tokyo route from January 2013 (the business class seat is shown below – see our report for photos and details).
Earlier this month, JAL and British Airways began offering codeshare flights between Tokyo (both Haneda and Narita airport) and London (Heathrow).
The joint business will now see the two airlines cooperating on all non-stop flights operated by JAL or British Airways between Japan and Europe.
This will not only include the 19 weekly services between the UK and Japan, but also JAL's services to Paris and Frankfurt.
British Airways and JAL will also be improving flight transfers for customers through enhancing and expanding the codeshare network beyond their respective hub cities.
JAL customers will, be able to book seats to the new codeshare destinations of Belfast, Helsinki, Frankfurt, and Gothenburg while British Airways will extend its reach to more points in Japan by codesharing on JAL flights to Kansai, Okayama, Hiroshima, Izumo, Nagasaki, Kagoshima and Okinawa.
Further expansion of codeshare arrangements are expected in the future.
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About David Flynn
David Flynn is the editor of Australian Business Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.