Star Alliance partners Continental Airlines and Aegean Airlines have started codesharing on Continental’s flights between its New York-area hub at Newark Liberty International Airport and Athens, as well as on selected flights operated by Aegean Airlines in Europe.
Continental Airlines is now placing its ‘CO’ flight code on selected Aegean Airlines-operated flights between Athens and six leading holiday destinations in Greece (Thessaloniki, Heraklion, Rhodes, Mykonos, Santorini and Chania) and between Athens and Larnaca, Cyprus.
At a future date to be determined, Continental will also codeshare on Aegean’s flights between Athens and London Heathrow, Munich and Frankfurt. Pending government approval, Continental will also codeshare on Aegean flights between Athens and Paris Charles de Gaulle and Rome Fiumicino.
Meanwhile, Aegean Airlines is now placing its ‘A3’ flight code on Continental’s flights between Newark and Athens. Pending government approval, Aegean will also codeshare on Continental Airlines flights from Newark to Paris Charles de Gaulle and to Rome Fiumicino.
“Aegean Airlines continues to expand its codeshare strategy across the world. Thanks to this new partnership with Continental Airlines we can now offer Greek passengers a great travel solution to New York,” says Dimitris Gerogiannis, Aegean Airlines’ chief executive officer. “This is another example of the many new advantages our recent Star Alliance membership offers our passengers.”
“Continental is delighted to partner with Aegean Airlines,” says Jim Compton, Continental’s executive vice president and chief marketing officer. “The agreement will offer our US-originating customers seamless access, via Athens, to many of Greece’s most popular destinations, as well as increasing travel options for our Greek customers.”
Because both Continental and Aegean Airlines are members of Star Alliance, members of Continental’s frequent flyer program, OnePass, and Aegean Airlines’ frequent flyer program, Miles & Bonus, are able to earn and redeem mileage anywhere on either airline’s global route network.
Continental BusinessFirst passengers, OnePass Star Alliance Gold members and Presidents Club members traveling on a same-day Star Alliance member flight are able to access Aegean Airlines Lounges at the flight’s departure city, while Aegean Airlines Business Class passengers and Miles & Bonus Star Alliance Gold members are able to access Continental’s Presidents Club lounges worldwide prior to departure on a same-day Star Alliance member flight.
The U.S.carrier has been serving Athens since 2007. The airline operates its flights between Newark and Athens with Boeing 767-400ERs fitted with 235 seats – 35 in the BusinessFirst cabin and 200 in economy.
Aegean Airlines is Greece’s largest airline, carrying 6.6 million passengers in 2009, an increase of 10 per cent over 2008. After taking delivery of 22 new Airbus A320s and A321, the company operates a fleet of 28 aircraft. In its 10-year history of scheduled service, Aegean has received awards six times by the European Regions Airline Association (ERA) in recognition of its operating performance, commercial success and commitment to customer comfort and satisfaction.
Additionally, Aegean has been repeatedly awarded by Eleftherios Venizelos Athens International Airport as the single largest contributor to the airport’s passenger growth. Aegean also received the Skytrax World Airline award as the best regional airline in Europe for 2009.
In February 2010 the shareholders of Aegean Airlines and the recently privatized and re-fleeted Olympic Air entered into an agreement that, if approved by EU authorities, would eventually lead to the merging of the two companies. However, the European Commission has expressed unease about the potential near-monopoly the merger would create in the Greek airline industry. More information is available on www.aegeanair.com.