Brazilian airline TAM Linhas Aereas and Air Canada, Canada' s largest airline and a founding member of the Star Alliance, signed a Memorandum of Understanding today in Sao Paulo providing for the implementation of a codeshare agreement and reciprocal frequent flyer mileage accumulation for members of the carriers loyalty programs, TAM Fidelidade and Aeroplan. The intent of the proposed agreement is to offer increased services for customers traveling between Brazil and Canada, including seamless transfers and convenient connections to a variety of destinations served by the two airlines.
"We will be increasing availability of international destinations through this agreement between TAM and Air Canada, consistent with our strategy of establishing partnerships with the world's main airlines," said Paulo Castello Branco, TAM's Vice-President for Planning and Alliances.
Brazil is a very important market for Air Canada, commented Daniel Shurz, Air Canadas Vice President, Network Planning. We look forward to working with TAM to develop a strong commercial partnership that will benefit the customers of both our airlines.
The proposed agreement will allow TAM passengers to travel on Air Canada from Sao Paulo to Toronto, with connections to many destinations in Canada. Air Canada customers, in turn, will enjoy increased options for traveling to points throughout Brazil with convenient connections with its daily non-stop flights to Sao Paulo from Toronto. In addition, members of TAM Fidelidade and Air Canadas Aeroplan frequent flyer programs will benefit from reciprocal mileage accumulation on eligible codeshare flights.
TAM is a pioneer in launching a loyalty program in Brazil. The company has 4.7 million members and has issued more than 5.5 million tickets redeemed with frequent flyer points.
Air Canadas new in-flight product features lie-flat beds in its international business class cabin called Executive First. All customers, in Economy and business class, enjoy digital quality personal seatback entertainment systems with 80 hours of video and 50 hours of audio on demand, USB port and a standard 110 volt electrical outlets at arms reach.
Starting December 1, 2008, Air Canada will upgauge its aircraft on the Sao Paulo-Toronto route to a Boeing 777-300ER from a Boeing 767-300, providing an additional 138 seats a day. AC091 will depart Sao Paulo at 10:30 p.m. and arrive in Toronto the following morning at 5:35 a.m. AC090 will depart Toronto daily at 10:10 p.m. and arrive in Sao Paulo at 10:50 a.m. Flights are timed to connect at the carriers main hub in Toronto with onward Air Canada flights to Europe and Asia, providing convenient travel times between those continents and South America.