American Airlines Forms Exclusive Partnership With GOL Creating Expanded Network Across the Americas
American Airlines and GOL have entered into an exclusive codeshare agreement that will deepen their existing partnership and strengthen the largest network between the U.S. and Brazil. The AAdvantage and GOL SMILES loyalty programs will also offer enhanced benefits.
On Wednesday (September 15, 2021), American Airlines announced the signing of a letter-of-intent to expand their partnership with GOL, Brazil’s largest airline. The expanded partnership builds on the airlines’ initial 2020 codeshare agreement with an exclusive codeshare agreement and a larger reciprocal GOL SMILES and AAdvantage® loyalty program partnership. The deepened commercial relationship is expected to create a more seamless travel experience for guests of both airlines.
In Wednesday’s announcement, American Airlines’ President, Robert Isom, said,
“American has long been the leading U.S. carrier to South America and our stronger partnership with GOL solidifies that leadership position. Our long-haul network marries seamlessly with GOL’s strong domestic network in Brazil. Together, we will be able to offer customers flying to, through and from Brazil, access to the largest network with the lowest fares and the Americas’ biggest and best joint travel loyalty program.”
Also commenting on the expanded commercial partnership, GOL’s CEO, Paulo Kakinoff, said,
“This codeshare agreement between two of the leading airlines in the Americas combines our highly complementary route networks to offer customers a seamless travel experience with the largest number of flights and destinations in North and South America. We believe that this will bolster GOL’s presence in international markets, accelerate our long-term growth, and maximize value for our shareholders. It adds to our confidence in GOL’s growth as the economy reopens and travel demand increases.”
Under the new agreement, GOL will become American Airlines’ sole codeshare partnership in Brazil, while American will become GOL’s sole U.S. codeshare partner. On the combined networks, guests will enjoy service to over 30 U.S. destinations on American and more than 20 new destinations in South America with GOL. American Airlines has served South America since 1942 and currently offers service to 17 destinations including Sao Paulo (GRU) and Rio de Janeiro (GIG) from Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW), Miami (MIA) and New York (JFK). Over the last ten years American has carried over 14 million passengers between the U.S. and Brazil, twice as many as any other U.S. airline. GOL is Brazil’s largest airline and offers service to 63 destinations.
In 2022, members of GOL SMILES and AAdvantage loyalty programs will gain access to expanded benefits including priority check-in, security and boarding, a larger checked baggage allowance, lounge access and preferred seats on both carriers. The airlines also expect to offer an enhanced joint loyalty offering with more ways to earn and redeem miles.
Under the expanded partnership, American will have the right to appoint one member to GOL’s Board of Directors who will also be granted membership to GOL’s Alliance Committee and other committees related to the operational partnership between the carriers. Additionally, American will invest $200 million in newly issued preferred GOL shares in a capital increase, for a 5.2% participation in the airline’s economic interest. The completion of the agreements are subject to various conditions, including execution and delivery of definitive documentation, regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.
Source: American Airlines