Qantas and Emirates have announced they will extend their partnership for another five years, offering customers access to an expansive joint network across Australia, New Zealand, Europe and the UK. The agreement was signed by Emirates President Tim Clark and Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce at the International Air Transport Association Annual General Meeting in Boston.
The airlines have existing approvals from regulators to operate a joint business until March 2023. Qantas and Emirates will seek re-authorisation from relevant regulators, including the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, to continue the core elements of the partnership including coordination of pricing, schedules, sales and tourism marketing on approved routes until 2028. The deal includes an option to renew for another five years beyond that.
“The extension of our partnership with Qantas is testament to its success. It also reflects our commitment to ensure customers travelling to and from Australia, a market which we have served for 25 years, continue to have the best connections and frequent flyer benefits. Despite the challenges of the past 18 months, today’s announcement reinforces that Emirates is here for the long-haul,” Emirates’ Clark said. “Our partnership seamlessly connects travellers to over one hundred destinations globally on our joint network, and offers a coordinated premium experience such as access to points and lounges. As borders re-open, we look forward to restoring our Australian flight schedules including our popular A380 services, and to welcoming customers to experience our best-in-class partnership for many more years to come.”
“This marks the continuation of one of the most significant bilateral partnerships in aviation. We called it ‘seismic’ when it launched in 2013 and it has been, especially in terms of what it’s meant for over 13 million people who have travelled on flights that form part of the deal,” Joyce said. “The premise of our partnership with Emirates has always been that no airline can fly everywhere but combined we can fly to most of the places our joint customers want to travel to. And that we treat each other’s customers as our own. We know the international aviation market will take years to fully recover so close collaboration between airline partners is going to be more important than ever.”
This year, Emirates is celebrating 25 years of flying to Australia, transporting more than 39 million passengers between Australian cities, including Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth, and other destinations via its Dubai hub since 1996. Emirates has continued to display its strong commitment to the Australian market increasing the size of its operations from three flights a week when it initially launched in 1996 in Melbourne, peaking to over 100 flights per week prior to the pandemic.