Delta Air Lines and WestJet have signed an agreement to create a comprehensive transborder joint venture (JV) arrangement that will offer customers an extensive route network within the US and Canada.
The agreement deepens the existing codeshare partnership between the carriers and follows the signing of a memorandum of understanding in December 2017 announcing the intention to form a JV.
The airline said the JV will provide substantial reach into Canada and the US with transborder service to more than 30 cities covering over 95 per cent of US – Canada demand. The new JV will also enable Delta and WestJet to compete more effectively against other carriers.
Delta’s chief executive officer (CEO), Ed Bastian said: “Delta’s future is global and together with WestJet, we can augment the two airlines’ capabilities and bring together our strengths in this important trans-border market.
“Combined, we will be able to offer more destinations to customers with an integrated network, superior airline products, improved airport connections and significantly enhanced frequent flyer benefits. The JV will provide an unmatched passenger experience for customers travelling between the U.S. and Canada.”
Upon receipt of regulatory approvals in Canada and the US, Delta and WestJet will work together to implement all aspects of the enhanced cooperation including expanded codesharing, more closely aligned frequent flyer program and reciprocal elite benefits, joint growth across their U.S./Canada transborder network.
They will co-locate at key hubs with more seamless passenger and baggage transit. The agreement will also include the ability to cooperate on cargo accompanying passenger flights as well as corporate contracts.
WestJet President and CEO, Ed Sims said: “WestJet continues its drive toward becoming a global airline, and the signing of this agreement marks a major milestone in that journey.
“Working together with Delta, the premier U.S. carrier, we are looking forward to providing enhanced offerings and more choice for guests. The joint venture will allow us to maximise our existing partnership with Delta to benefit customers by bringing greater competition to the trans-border market.”