BUENOS AIRES, Argentina – Aerolineas Argentinas, the flag carrier of Argentina, has signed an agreement to join SkyTeam in 2012. Aerolineas will be SkyTeam’s first South American member, adding 38 new destinations to the SkyTeam network.
The signing ceremony was held yesterday in Buenos Aires, under the patronage of the President of Argentina, Mrs. Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner. SkyTeam is actively working to strengthen its presence in Latin America, a region with strong growth figures and a positive outlook for the future. The emerging economy of Argentina is driven by natural, cultural and industrial resources. As the first South American member, Aerolineas Argentinas fits well in SkyTeam’s expansion strategy, enhancing the network in the region by offering multiple new destinations in the southern hemisphere.
Through direct services by Aeromexico, Air Europa, Air France, Alitalia and Delta Air Lines to Buenos Aires, SkyTeam already offers Argentinean customers daily access to North America and Europe, with convenient connections to Africa, the Middle East and Asia. The extensive domestic and regional service of Aerolineas Argentinas brings 38 new destinations to the SkyTeam network, including Cordoba, Mendoza, Asuncion and Montevideo. With Buenos Aires serving as a Latin American hub with flights to and from key destinations in the region, SkyTeam customers will benefit from improved access to the southern part of South America and Patagonia in particular, popular destinations with travelers from all over the world.
Fleet renewal and improving quality and consistency
Aerolineas Argentinas has initiated a long-term plan to expand and revitalize its business. Key elements of this plan include fleet renewal and rationalization, adding key international destinations such as New York and London, increasing the density of the domestic and regional network and improving product quality and consistency.
Mariano Recalde, President and CEO of Aerolineas Argentinas said: “Aerolineas has started a new chapter under the direction of the Argentine Government and for more than one year we have taken several measures to strengthen our business model. One of the key elements is to reinstate Aerolineas into the industry standards and improve our customers’ experience. Joining SkyTeam is a major step towards fulfilling our goals and market recognition for our efforts and commitment. As a result, Aerolineas’ passengers will benefit from unprecedented global connectivity through the alliance hubs and networks in Europe, America and Asia, and will also have access to a wide variety of SkyTeam products.”
Marie-Joseph Male, Managing Director of SkyTeam, said: “As our 10th anniversary year comes to a close, we can look back on an extraordinary period of growth for the alliance. We have seen our member base in Asia grow tremendously with the announcements of China Eastern, Shanghai Airlines, China Airlines and Garuda Indonesia. Welcoming Aerolineas Argentinas is the next significant step in expanding our presence in Latin America. Together with its plans to expand intercontinental services to New York, London and Paris, I am convinced that joining SkyTeam will help Aerolineas Argentinas position itself as a major player in Latin America.”