Qantas has expanded its network in Asia following the launch of a new partnership with China Southern Airlines.
The new codeshare partnership, which follows an agreement signed in December 2013, will enable Qantas passengers to book flights to the Chinese cities of Xiamen, Kunming, Fuzhou and Urumqi. These services will be operated by China Southern from Guangzhou Airport, with flights connecting to the Chinese carrier’s Australian flights from Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth.
In return, China Southern passengers will be able to connect to nine domestic routes in Australia, on flights operated by Qantas.
“By expanding its network in partnership with China Southern… Qantas is pleased to add more destinations to the map and simplify the journey for the increasing number of Qantas customers travelling to China,” said Qantas International’s CEO, Simon Hickey.
“Our expanding network in China is also great news for Australian tourism, with China Southern customers now able to book on nine routes across the Qantas domestic network including major gateways as well as regional cities such as Cairns and Coolangatta.”
The deal is the latest stage in Qantas’ strategy to expand its operations through partnerships with other airlines. Last month, the Australian airline penned a new codeshare deal with Bangkok Airways which added five new Thai destinations to its route map. In total, Qantas now offers access to more than 120 Asian destinations.
“The Qantas Group has never had a stronger presence in Asia. More than one sixth of our total revenue now comes from flights to and within the region, and we plan to keep opening up new travel opportunities,” Hickey added.
For China Southern, the Qantas tie-up will provide a further boost to its ‘Canton Route’ strategy, which is aiming to position Guangzhou as a transit point for passengers flying between Australia and Europe.