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Tue, 4 June 2019

Thai Smile to Join Star Alliance as a Connecting Partner

Thai Smile Airways is to join Star Alliance as a Connecting Partner.

Thai Smile will add 11 new destinations to the Star Alliance network, which already comprises over 1,300 airports in 194 countries.

Established by Star Alliance in June 2016, the Connecting Partner model complements its membership model. In contrast to full membership in the alliance, requiring building of commercial ties with all full members, the more regional Connecting Partner scope calls for commercial relationships with a minimum of three carriers only.

Customers travelling on an itinerary which includes a transfer between a Star Alliance member airline and a Connecting Partner will be offered standard alliance benefits such as passenger and baggage through check-in.

Thai Smile Airways Airbus A320 reg: HS-TXC. Picture by Steven Howard of TravelNewsAsia.com Click to enlarge.

In addition, customers who have achieved Star Alliance Gold Status in their frequent flyer programme will enjoy premium customer benefits.

Once all entry requirements are fulfilled, which is expected by the end of the year, Thai Smile Airways will become the second Connecting Partner, joining Juneyao Airlines which entered in 2017.

Jeffrey Goh, Star Alliance CEO, said, “Three years after the introduction of the new programme, I am pleased to announce that Thai Smile is set to become the next Star Alliance Connecting Partner, which will support us in further strengthening our position as the leading airline alliance network. The partnership with our first Connecting Partner, Juneyao Airlines, has exceeded our mutual expectations and we look forward to providing our customers with even more choice through the addition of the THAI Smile Airways offer”.

The Bangkok-based airline has already begun to implement the necessary technology and commercial links which will allow Thai Smile to begin serving Star Alliance connecting passengers in 2020.

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