Qantas will offer customers greater travel options through South America as part of an expanded codeshare relationship with oneworld partner LAN in the LATAM Airlines Group.
Qantas customers will be able to travel on codeshare services operated by LAN from Santiago de Chile to six destinations across South America, including Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo and Lima, offering customers seamless connections with baggage and airport transfers and more options to earn frequent flyer points.
In turn, LAN will codeshare on Qantas services across the Tasman, and across Qantas’ extensive domestic network.
Qantas Executive Manager International Sales Stephen Thompson said the codeshare expansion delivered on the airline’s international gateway strategy by increasing its presence in growth markets through strategic partnerships.
“This is great news for Qantas customers, with greater access to popular destinations in South America than ever before.
“Santiago is a key gateway for our customers and this development will strengthen its prominence as hub for onward connections, offering the additional customer benefits of a codeshare service – more opportunities to earn frequent flyer points and luggage checked straight through to their final destination,” said Mr Thompson.
CEO of International Business LAN, Damian Scokin, said: “We are pleased to strengthen our partnership with Qantas and to add 8 Australian cities to our network of destinations, which are located in key points of the island continent and allow access to the most attractive tourist destinations in Australia.”
Qantas operates three non-stop return services per week between Sydney and Santiago, operated by a B747 aircraft, reconfigured with new interiors and lie-flat beds in Business Class. Qantas has a long-standing partnership with LAN, codesharing on LAN’s daily flights on the Sydney-Auckland-Santiago route. Together, Qantas and LAN offer 10 return flights between Sydney and Santiago per week.
Qantas will also operate a fourth weekly service between 21 November 2014 and 13 February 2015 to cater for additional demand over the holiday period (subject to regulatory approval).