Jean-Cyril Spinetta, Chairman of AIR FRANCE KLM and Constantino de Oliveira Junior, Chairman of GOL Linhas Aéreas Inteligentes S.A., a company that owns the GOL and VARIG brands, today signed a commercial cooperation agreement in Sao Paulo.
The agreement will enable the 15 million customers who are members of the AIR FRANCE and KLM "Flying Blue" loyalty program and the 6 million holders of a GOL "Smiles" card to benefit from new services and new destinations.
As of 1 May 2009, Flying Blue cardholders will be able to earn miles on all GOL and VARIG flights. In the same way, holders of a Smiles card will earn Miles on the AIR FRANCE and KLM networks. From July 1st, they will all be able to take advantage of their Miles and use their awards on the three airlines AIR FRANCE, KLM and GOL / VARIG.To mark this agreement, holders of a FLYING BLUE card will double the number of Miles earned by traveling on GOL / VARIG routes between May 1 and July 31, 2009. During the same period, members of the Smiles program will earn double Miles by traveling on AIR FRANCE or KLM routes.
The agreement also provides for code-share flights. In mid-2009, the AIR FRANCE code will appear on GOL flights between Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and thirteen major Brazilian cities: Belem, Brasilia, Belo Horizonte, Campinas, Curitiba, Florianopolis, Fortaleza, Iguassu Falls, Manaus, Porto Alegre, Recife, Salvador and Vitoria. The number of cities concerned in Brazil may be increased in the coming months. A similar agreement is being prepared between KLM and GOL.
For passengers traveling in Latin America and between this continent and Europe, this cooperation represents a total of 3,300 daily flights to close to 300 destinations in 114 countries served by highly complementary networks.
"Air France and KLM will offer a leading service between Brazil, the main economic and tourist centre in South America, and, beyond the hubs at Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Amsterdam-Schiphol, the rest of Europe, Africa, the Middle East and Asia," said Jean-Cyril Spinetta. "Our customers travelling to and from Brazil will have an unrivalled choice of destinations and schedules, which are in line with our group's strategic position: to provide the best services possible between Europe and the rest of the world. By developing our balanced network and creating promising business partnerships, we are giving ourselves additional strengths to face the current economic crisis."
"Our customers can use their miles on our extensive network in Brazil and South America. Now, thanks to the joining together of Flying Blue and Smiles, we are extending it to the rest of the world," said Constantino de Oliveira Junior. "This commercial agreement will allow both companies to further enhance the quality of their services. We are proud to work together with AIR FRANCE and KLM to connect people, families and businesses."