oneworld aims for bigger slice of Dutch business travel market03 November 2005
The oneworld™ airline alliance today launches a major drive to gain a bigger share of the business travel market from the Netherlands, by offering small and medium-sized companies throughout the country discounts of up to 50 per cent on more than a thousand air fares in return for a more regular relationship with the alliance. These fares are flexible and tailored for business travel.
Once they register, customers can use oneworld's specially discounted "businessflyer" tickets to fly to more than 190 cities in Europe, North America, South American, Asia and Australiasia - all the most popular destinations for Dutch businesses - using any of the alliance's carriers.
These comprise eight of the world's biggest and best airlines, plus their dozen affiliates:
- American Airlines, the biggest airline in the world.
- British Airways, the leading international airline.
- Qantas, one of the world's top long distance airlines whose oneworld membership makes it the only alliance to offer a full network within Australia.
- Cathay Pacific Airways, one of the most highly regarded Asian airlines.
- Iberia, the top carrier between Europe and Latin America.
- Finnair, the major Nordic European airline with its Helsinki hub growing in importance as a European gateway to Asia.
- LAN, as one magazine described it, "the lone star in the South American skies".
- Aer Lingus, the "low fare, more value" carrier from Ireland
Three other airlines are lining up to join the alliance, two of them in the past month - Royal Jordanian, which will start offering oneworld services and benefits at around the turn of 2006/2007; Malev, which signed a memorandum of understanding in May as its first step to membership, and Japan Airlines which announced last week that it wants to board.
Departures using these special businessflyer fares are available from Amsterdam and Brussels.
oneworld Vice-President Commercial Nicolas Ferri said: "Dutch businesses now have a real choice for their worldwide travel needs. By working together in this market, oneworld's member airlines can offer a highly attractive alternative to the national carrier for travel right around the globe – flights on some of the highest quality airlines in the world, across an unrivalled international route network, with great flexibility and substantial savings on prices."
businessflyer was originally launched in Germany in 2003 and then extended to France in April 2004 and Switzerland last month. More than 2.400 companies have signed up in the original two countries so far, working with more than 1.100 travel agents, with revenues generated up threefoldin the past year.
oneworld intends to extend businessflyer to other countries in the future.
businessflyer fares are available for travel in business or economy class, enabling companies to benefit whatever the requirements of their travel policy. The tickets provide maximum flexibility, so itineraries or dates can be changed until just before departure. businessflyer fares attract frequent flyer rewards and tier status points.
oneworld is supporting the launch of businessflyer in the Netherlands with a massive direct mail campaign, posting details to more than 6.000 small to medium Dutch businesses, organisations and to the travel trade companies.
To participate in the programme, customers in the Netherlands simply register online at www.oneworld.com/netherlands The website gives full details on how to make reservations, which routes are available from each gateway, and the special fare levels applicable under the scheme.
Through just one point of contact, customers can select flights by the alliance's eight carriers from the Netherlands to more than 190 of the most popular destinations worldwide for Dutch business travellers. Once they have identified their choice of destination, flight and class of travel, they will be able to make their final reservations either through their usual travel agency or directly through one of the oneworld carriers.
About oneworld: oneworld enables its member airlines to offer their customers more services, benefits and value than any carrier can provide on its own. These include a broader route network, opportunities to earn and redeem frequent flyer miles and points across the combined oneworld network and more airport lounges.
Together, its members serve around 600 destinations in 135 countries, carrying some 230 million passengers a year on a fleet of almost 2.000 aircraft.
It is the first global alliance with the customer convenience of interline e-ticketing between all its member airlines. It is the only global alliance whose members collectively achieved a profit last year.
oneworld was voted the world's best airline alliance by readers of Business Traveller magazine in its 2005 poll for the second year running and named the World's Leading Airline Alliance for the second year running in the latest World Travel Awards, based on votes cast by travel professionals from 80.000 agencies in more than 200 countries.
Note: LAN affiliates Lan Ecuador and Lan Argentina are not members of oneworld.