SriLankan Airlines (Colombo) will become part of oneworld ® alliance from midnight tonight, offering the full range of services and benefits of theworld’s fastest growing and highest rated global airline alliance.
SriLankan becomes the first carrier from the Indian subcontinent to join any of the global airline alliances – and completes oneworld’s biggest expansion program since the alliance was launched 15 years ago.
These landmarks are being celebrated today at a ceremony attended by the key ministers from Sri Lanka’s government at South Asia’s newest international airport, Hambantota’s Mattala Rajapaksa International, serving Sri Lanka’s South and East Coasts and the Hambantota seaport.
From midnight, the flag carrier of Sri Lanka will be flying alongside some of the world’s leading carriers:
Asia-Pacific’s Cathay Pacific Airways, Japan Airlines, Malaysia Airlines and Australia’s QANTAS Airways.
From Europe, Airberlin, British Airways, Finnair, Iberia and Russia’s S7 Airlines.
In the Middle East, Qatar Airways – the only one of the Big Three Gulf carriers to be part of any alliance – and Royal Jordanian.
In North America, American Airlines and its US Airways merger partner.
In South America LAN Airlines and its partner in LATAM Airlines Group, TAM Airlines.
SriLankan’s first flight as part of oneworld will be flight UL 318 departing from Colombo to the Kuala Lumpur hub of oneworld partner Malaysia Airlines at 7.45 am (0745) tomorrow (May 1).
The airline’s addition to oneworld will bring two new destinations on to the alliance network – Hambantota itself plus India’s Tiruchirapalli – along with its Colombo base as a new oneworld hub. With an extensive schedule serving southern India and as the leading international airline serving the Maldives, SriLankan also significantly strengthens oneworld’s presence throughout South Asia, one of the world’s fastest growing regions for air travel demand.
With SriLankan, oneworld:
Serves almost 1,000 airports in 150 countries, with 14,250 daily departures.
Carries more than 500 million passengers a year on a combined fleet of some 3,300 aircraft.
Generates $140 billion (US) annual revenues.
Offers more than 600 airport lounges, including many frequently rated as the world’s best.
Top Copyright Photo: Antony J. Best/AirlinersGallery.com (all others by SriLankan). Airbus A340-311 4R-ADC (msn 034) climbs away majestically from London’s Heathrow Airport bout for Colombo.