Qatar Airways said yesterday that it’s looking at leaving the Oneworld alliance in 2019.
The original invite to join was made jointly by British Airways and American Airlines with Qatar becoming a member in 2014.
Qatar admits that the alliance is an invaluable tool for assisting the customer journey. However it believes that the US big 3 which includes fellow alliance member American – are actively hostile to Qatar.
American has made life difficult and continues to do so, often failing to live up to what members of an alliance might expect.
Emirates has set an interesting example of refusing to join an alliance while at the same time crisis crossing the world in code shares and joint ventures.
It’s entirely viable for Qatar to carry on outside the alliance and yet maintain most, if not all of its codeshares.
Qatar is also a major shareholder in BA’s parent IAG, and British Airways has joint business interests with the airline; Qatar effectively manages the vast bulk of BA’s cargo operation globally for example.
Oneworld has possibly the loosest arrangements of the major alliances, many of its members do little more than allow the basic code sharing and business lounge access, some don’t even allow reward flights miles to be earned across all members.