Thursday, January 29, 2009

Continental switches from SkyTeam to Star Alliance

Continental Airlines intends to end its participation in the SkyTeam Alliance after the last scheduled flight on Oct. 24, 2009. Make sure that you don’t try to redeem miles or earn miles in the network alliance at this time !
I am a creature of habit and I know where the SkyTeam Partner airport Lounges are located. They are presently available to One Pass Plat members via SkyTeam Alliance Partners, but now I will have to find the other group of lounges. I know that it is bad form to grouch about change….. Change happens and most of the time it's fun to try new places.

In June 2008, Continental announced plans for extensive commercial cooperation with United Airlines and Star Alliance, linking their networks and services worldwide. They have now given us an uppdated press release, informing that,."Regarding SkyTeam, Continental intends to end its participation in the SkyTeam Alliance after the last scheduled flight on Oct. 24, 2009.
Mark Bergsrud of Continetal Airlines satd that they “anticipate their participation in Star Alliance will begin promptly after Continental leave SkyTeam.” So it sounds as if OnePass members may have a small window where they are not part of a larger network while the switch over is in transition.
Customers will keep an account with one airline and use the reciprocity between programs to "earn and burn" on other airlines. Cotinentals Presidents Club members will have access to United's Red Carpet Club lounges as well as other select Star Alliance partner lounges. Specific Star Alliance partner lounge access for Presidents Club card holders has not been decided yet.
Aeroflot , AeroMéxico , Air France, Alitalia ,China Southern Airlines, CSA CzechAirlines, Delta Air Lines, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, Korean Air, Northwest Airlines.

Air Canada Air China Air New Zealand, ANA Asiana Airlines, Austrian bmi, EgyptAir, LOT Polish Airlines,Scandinavian Airlines Shanghai Airlines Singapore Airlines, Spanair Portugal ,THAI,Turkish Airlines, United,US Airways, Lufthansa and South African Airways.
I wonder when Continental Airlines will inform us to the extent of the lounge and upgrade benefits that Star Alliance will offer One pass members.
Star Alliance Gold Customers travelling in Any Class have access to any Star Alliance member carriers' owned lounges with the Star Alliance Gold logo at the entrance. United and US Airways Star Alliance Gold customers are only eligible for lounge access when travelling in conjunction with a Star Alliance international flight. Lufthansa’s a Miles & More members and Lufthansa International First Class Customers have access to International First Class and/or any Star Alliance member carriers' own lounges, also on international flights.

I am going to try to listen to CAL s earnings report conference call to hear how they are going to spin this change as an “enhancement” for their loyal frequent fliers and shareholders.- Business is all about retaining customers. Many Marriott Rewards members were angry about the recent changes in the program being spined off as an “enhancement”. One man said that “it is an insult to their highly educated clients to try to pull the wool over their eyes”.
Thats why is is best to use up your hotel and airline points because they loose value every year. Dont squirrel them away!

1 comment:

  1. as you say, checked bags are not the most important perk. Checked bag allowance.
    Global Services, Premier 1K, Premier Platinum and Premier Gold members will be able to check up to three standard bags, up to 70 pounds each, for free. Premier Silver members will be able to check one standard bag, up to 50 pounds, for free. what counts is upgrades and recognizing the frequent fliers is an area that is slipping