ETHIOPIAN AIRLINES JOINS STAR ALLIANCE Three Member Carriers Based on African Continent - Improved Flight Options for Customers
ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia - December 13th, 2011 - At a ceremony held at Addis Ababa’s Bole International Airport the Star Alliance Chief Executive Board (CEB) welcomed Ethiopian Airlines as the Alliance's third carrier based on the African continent.
"Today we have taken a large step forward in completing our Africa strategy," said Jaan Albrecht, CEO Star Alliance." With Ethiopian Airlines now part of the Star Alliance network, we offer our customers the widest choice of flights connecting to, from and within Africa. Moreover, Ethiopian Airlines will bring the Star Alliance customer benefits to more markets across Africa, a region of the world in which air travel is enjoying steady growth rates.".
With the addition of Ethiopian Airlines, the Star Alliance network in Africa grows to cover major commercial and political cities of the continent particularly in East, Central and West Africa. In total, the 16 Star Alliance member carriers serving Africa offer more than 750 daily flights to over 110 destinations in 48 countries on the continent, with Addis Ababa, Cairo and Johannesburg serving as the main hubs.
"It is another historical milestone for Ethiopian to join this most prestigious and longest serving Alliance in the world,"said Tewolde Gebremariam, CEO Ethiopian Airlines. "This day will remain colourfully marked in our history book. It is in line with our efforts to lay a strong foundation for the airline to achieve its vision 2025 objectives."
On a global scale, with the addition of Ethiopian Airlines, the Star Alliance network now counts 28 airlines, offering a choice of more than 21,000 daily flights to 1,290 destinations in 189 countries.
Through its Star Alliance membership, Ethiopian Airlines now offers its customers the benefits of being a member of a global airline alliance: worldwide reach via the extensive network, seamless travel and status recognition through the frequent flyer programmes. Ethiopian Airlines ShebaMiles participants can now earn miles when flying on any Star Alliance member carrier, with the collected miles counting towards achieving ShebaMiles Silver Club or Gold Glub status. All collected miles can be redeemed for flights operated by any Star Alliance member carrier. In addition, all ShebaMiles Silver Club and Gold Club customers will receive the respective Alliance Silver and Gold benefits every time they travel on a Star Alliance member carrier. By the same token, Ethiopian Airlines will be extending the Alliance Silver and Gold benefits to status customers from all other Star Alliance member carriers when they fly on Ethiopian Airlines.
Ethiopian Airlines will also participate in and sell the various Alliance fare products. On the corporate side, Ethiopia is an important destination for meetings and conventions. Indeed, its capital city Addis Ababa is often referred to as the "political capital of Africa". This stems from the fact that the city is home to organisations such as the African Union or United Nations Economic Commission for Africa. By participating in both Star Alliance Conventions Plus and Meetings Plus, Ethiopian Airlines will now be able to offer worldwide flight connections at special rates for delegates and participants.
On the leisure side, Ethiopian Airlines will begin participating in the various Star Alliance fare products as of January 01, 2012. The airline's African routes will be added to the offer of the Star Alliance Africa Airpass, a special fare designed for those wishing to criss-cross the continent by air.
At the same time Ethiopian Airlines will also become part of the Star Alliance Round the World fare, opening the airline's network for globe trotters.
About Star Alliance:
The Star Alliance network was established in 1997 as the first truly global airline alliance to offer worldwide reach, recognition and seamless service to the international traveller. Its acceptance by the market has been recognised by numerous awards, including the Air Transport World Market Leadership Award and Best Airline Alliance by both Business Traveller Magazine and Skytrax. The member airlines are: Adria Airways, Aegean Airlines, Air Canada, Air China, Air New Zealand, ANA, Asiana Airlines, Austrian, Blue1, British Midland International, Brussels Airlines, Continental Airlines, Croatia Airlines, EGYPTAIR, Ethiopian Airlines, LOT Polish Airlines, Lufthansa, Scandinavian Airlines, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways, Spanair, SWISS, TAM Airlines, TAP Portugal, Turkish Airlines, THAI, United and US Airways. Avianca- TACA, Copa Airlines and Shenzhen Airlines have been announced as future members. Overall, the Star Alliance network offers more than 21,000 daily flights to 1,290 airports in 189 countries.
About Ethiopian Airlines:
Ethiopian Airlines, one of the largest and fastest growing airlines in Africa, made its maiden flight to Cairo in 1946. With the addition of new flight services to Milan, Ethiopian provides dependable services to 63 international destinations spanning four continents. Recently, Ethiopian received the 2011 AFRAA award for being consistently profitable over the years and has won the "AFRICAN CARGO AIRLINE OF THE YEAR 2011" Award for its excellence in air cargo. Ethiopian won the NEPAD Transport Infrastructure Excellence Awards 2009 and "Airline of the Year 2009" award from the African Airlines Association (AFRAA). In August 2008, Ethiopian won "the 2008 Corporate Achievement Award" of Aviation & Allied Business for setting the pace towards the development and growth of the African aviation industry. Ethiopian is also the first African carrier to win the 2008 Brussels Airport Company Award in recognition of its distinguished long haul operations witnessed through the introduction of new routes, new products, and close cooperation with Brussels Airport in marketing activities.