Star Alliance’s Chief Executive Board has unanimously accepted the membership application of Taiwanese carrier EVA Air, which is expected to join the alliance in mid-2013.
According to Star Alliance, the decision underscores the alliance’s long term strategy of seeking network growth and providing access to new regions which show strong economic potential and development.
“EVA Air is a very good fit for Star Alliance as the airline will add many new routes to our global network, with a specific focus on the growing Far East aviation market,” says Mark Schwab, CEO of Star Alliance. “This will increase the choice for our customers and is in line with our mission of being the leading global airline alliance for the international traveller.”
Since its founding nearly 15 years ago, Star Alliance has progressively built its presence in the Asia-Pacific region and will have eight member carriers based in this region by mid-2013.
Through its future membership in Star Alliance, EVA Air will be able to offer its customers access to a global network, along with seamless travel and status recognition within the various member-carrier frequent flyer programs.
“After careful evaluation we concluded that Star Alliance offers the best match for EVA Air. Our networks complement each other and we will expand the existing Alliance flight options in the growing cross-straits market,” says James Jeng, chairman of EVA Air.
“We look forward to significant synergy in both service enhancement and expansion of our customer base,” adds Jeng. “In addition, our partnership with Air China makes the Star Alliance especially attractive to us.”
The integration process will now begin, with teams at EVA Air and Star Alliance commencing the work which needs to be completed before a new airline can join the Star Alliance network. Air China will assist in this process as the mentor airline.
EVA Air’s network of around 60 destinations will add Kaohsiung in Taiwan and Surabaya in Indonesia as unique airports to the Star Alliance network.
In addition, says Star Alliance, Taiwan’s geographic location adds to the quality of the alliance’s hubs in Asia, because Taiwan has the shortest average distance to all major cities in the Asia-Pacific region.
Once EVA Air joins Star Alliance, the alliance’s network of 30 airlines (the current 26 and four future members) will offer more than 22,000 daily flights to 1,345 destinations in 191 countries.
EVA Airways was formed in 1989 as Taiwan’s first privately owned international airline. It is an affiliate of the Evergreen Group and sister company to global container-shipping giant Evergreen Line.
It flew its first scheduled flight in 1991 and today serves a network of business and leisure destinations in Asia, Oceania, Europe and North America. According to Star Alliance, EVA Air makes more flights from the United States to Asia, connecting to more destinations in Asia, than any other airline.
EVA Air currently operates 59 Boeing, McDonnell Douglas and Airbus aircraft including six McDonnell Douglas MD-90s, eight McDonnell Douglas/Boeing MD-11Fs, 16 Boeing 747-400s, 11 Airbus A330-200s, three Airbus A330-300s and 15 Boeing 777-300ERs.
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