Virgin Australia leaves Delta for United Airlines partnership

Codeshare flights back in service for Australian carrier, and triple the reach of US cities once the deal takes off from April 2022.

Benefits of the United-Virgin partnership include codeshare flights and more one-stop connections to cities in the US, Australia, Mexico, the Caribbean and South America.
Benefits of the United-Virgin partnership include codeshare flights and more one-stop connections to cities in the US, Australia, Mexico, the Caribbean and South America. Photo Credit: Virgin Australia

United Airlines and Virgin Australia Group have formed a new partnership, set to roll out in early 2022 pending government approval, the airlines announced last week. Virgin Australia previously had partnered with Delta Air Lines for US connectivity.

Benefits of the United-Virgin partnership, according to the carriers, would include codeshare flights and more one-stop connections to cities in the US, Australia, Mexico, the Caribbean and South America. The carriers also cited the ability for Mileage Plus and Velocity Frequent Flyer loyalty members to earn and redeem points or miles on each carriers' flights and reciprocal lounge access.

United currently offers daily direct flights from San Francisco and Los Angeles to Sydney, while other services, such as flights from Houston and direct service to Melbourne, are expected to resume later in 2022. Under the new partnership, United customers would have access to additional destinations, including Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide, according to United. The partnership would triple the number of US cities Virgin Australia customers can reach, according to the Australian carrier. 

The partnership would also mark the resumption of codeshare flights for Virgin Australia, which first paused them at the height of the pandemic. The carrier went into voluntary administration (similar to bankruptcy protection) on 21 April, 2020. It subsequently was purchased by Bain Capital and exited the voluntary administration on 17 November, 2020, under new CEO Jayne Hrdlicka.

Source: Business Travel News



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