China Southern to Quit the Skyteam Alliance
China Southern today announced they will quit the Skyteam Alliance. Their departure will be put into effect on the 1st of January next year and it comes as the airline believes it needs to focus more heavily on the development of their own company rather than that of Skyteam.
China Southern released a statement to break the news saying that they will be undergoing major changes throughout 2019 as they break away from the alliance. Airlines with alliances have various connections with other airlines, they’ll also often have special liveries that need removing. In addition to this airlines may have credit card programs, point programs and more all connected to the Skyteam or respective alliance group.
The Airline noted it will take them until the end of 2019 to completely remove themselves from the alliance. They did mention that they will make the transition for their customers as smooth as possible. China Southern is one of the big players in the aviation industry which an extensive route network and also fleet list.
It has been apparent that the relationship between the alliance and China Southern has been rocky for some time now. This is down to who’s in the alliance and their relationships outside of it. The Air France and the KLM group are in the alliance, in addition to this Delta is as well. These two carriers have very close relationships with China Eastern, a rival to China Southern.
Ultimately it’s a complicated situation as last year Oneworld member American Airlines purchased a stake in China Southern, that stake was valued at $200 Million.
At this stage Xiamen will not be looking to leave the Skyteam Alliance.