Saudi national carrier Riyadh Air has signed a strategic cooperation Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Turkish Airlines.

Accordingly, Riyadh Air said that guests of both airlines will be able “to take full advantage of each carrier’s worldwide network through a comprehensive interline and codeshare agreement that will allow customers to seamlessly connect between and combine sectors operated by either Riyadh Air or Turkish Airlines.”

Although no firm date has been announced as to when this agreement, subject to regulatory approvals, will take effect, the Saudi carrier said that it hopes to activate it “as soon as possible” after it launches its operations in mid-2025.

The cooperation agreement will also extend to the loyalty programmes of the two airlines. The MoU will facilitate members of each carrier’s loyalty programme to earn points or credits when traveling on codeshare services operated by the other.

The two airlines will also explore opportunities to develop a broader loyalty agreement covering both carrier’s global networks.

Furthermore, the MoU also commits Riyadh Air and Turkish Airlines to work together across areas including “aviation related services, cargo and digital development.”

“This memorandum of understanding is more than a collaboration…It’s a bridge between Türkiye and Saudi Arabia, further strengthening our ties. We believe this partnership will not only benefit our customers but also contribute significantly to the tourism and business sectors of both countries,” said Turkish Airlines chief investment and technology officer, Levent Konukcu.

Riyadh Air CEO, Tony Douglas, added, “Our close relationship will open up seamless connectivity via Istanbul airport to some 130 destinations worldwide, especially within Türkiye, Europe and the Americas. Bilateral agreements with established network airlines are extremely important to Riyadh Air and there are significant benefits to this partnership.”

At the recently concluded Dubai Airshow 2023 event held last month, Riyadh Air signed a similar agreement with Saudia. Riyadh Air said that the agreement with Saudia “aims to optimise routes and resources to ultimately provide guests with a broader range of destinations and services.”

Earlier this year, Riyadh Air announced an order of up to 72 Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft as part of a multi-billion-dollar deal. It included 39 confirmed aircraft with an option to acquire 33 more aircraft.;

(Image: Supplied by Riyadh Air)