IATA's annual aviation conference is currently taking place in Istanbul, during which two interesting agreements have been signed that could also affect Israeli tourists who want to fly to various destinations in Japan, Sweden, Denmark and Norway.
EL AL has signed codeshare agreements with Japanese airline ANA and Scandinavian airline SAS. This means that anyone who wants to fly to continuation destinations from Tokyo (to which EL AL flies directly) and from EL AL's European destinations to Oslo, Stockholm or Copenhagen, can do so in a built-in connection, under one flight ticket and accumulate points in the Matmid Frequent Flyer Club all along the way.
To illustrate, if you want to fly to Copenhagen, where there are no direct flights from Israel, you can fly with EL AL to one of its destinations in Europe (Amsterdam, Milan and more) and from there continue with SAS on one ticket, with a built-in connection where luggage is transferred directly to the next plane. Points will also be earned on the connecting flight within Europe. The example is also valid on flights with Japan's ANA to continuation destinations in Japan and abroad.
The agreement will take effect on sale in about six months, for flights that will take off in about nine months. EL AL has similar agreements with 18 other airlines, including Etihad, Vietnam Airlines, Australian Quatens and more.
In a conversation with Shlomi Zafrani, the company's vice president, he explains: "We are advancing to agreements that will also touch the clubs, which means that similar to the agreements we have now with Qantas and Etihad, we will be able to allow anyone flying with these companies to accumulate points in our frequent flyer and to use them with us, even if they do not fly to and from Israel. We aim to expand our club agreements with other companies in the hope that eventually we will be able to join one of the largest aviation alliances in the world, a process that can take years."
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