|Alan Joyce at the 2012 IATA general meeting.|
As I reported for the International Herald Tribune, airline executives grumbled the Middle East carriers were "subsidized by their governments" were "vehicles to diversify local economies", "paid less for fuel", yada, yada, yada. But all that complaining didn't solve anything. Having failed to beat 'em, Qantas is joining its former nemesis.
|An marriage born in heaven? Photo courtesy qantasandemirates.com|
If anybody has reason to cry now, it is the ever-enthusiastic energizer bunnies at Changi Airport in Singapore because when and if this deal kicks in, three European-bound Qantas flights, two to London and one to Frankfurt will no longer be stopping through the beautiful and user-friendly Changi, with its butterfly gardens and recliner chairs, according to a spokesman. No, those flights will hub instead at the new but much less interesting Dubai International.So maybe it is the passengers who will be shedding tears.
globalization of airlines as the three alliances expand into nearly every region of the world, and independents like Etihad and Emirates figure out ever more enterprising ways to accomplish the same goal while eschewing alliance membership.
But the air travel industry is in flux. Heck, as recently as a month ago rumor was Qatar Airways would hook up with oneworld. That's the same oneworld that claims Qantas as a member. I'm not good enough at chess to suggest how the Qantas/Emirates partnership will affect Qatar's alliance decision, though I'm guessing it will.
chairmanship of the International Air Transport Association, a group whose members are challenged to build three-dimensional puzzles without the guidance of the picture on the box. That is the airline business these days.
|Emirates chief Tim Clark. Photo courtesy Emirates|