British Airways has pulled off a major coup with a joint venture agreement signed with China Southern.
This means that both airlines will sell seats on each other’s aircraft to and from Chinese destination cities and to London and onwards.
This makes flying on BA more attractive for people travelling to multiple cities in China.
It establishes a considerable dominance for BA from London and effectively undermines Virgin Atlantic’s only flight into Shanghai which has minimal connectivity.
British Airways has been working for years to enter the China market in a profitable way, having failed to establish a route to Guangzhou as one example, largely because it lacked connections. The agreement with China Southern transforms its business in the country.
The two airlines began their relationship in 2017 with codeshares, but a full JV is a whole new level of cooperation.