Iberia Express to join Oneworld as affiliate member

21 Mar 2012 by BusinessTraveller

Iberia subsidiary Iberia Express will launch commercial services on Sunday March 25, and will immediately become an affiliate member of the Oneworld alliance.

Oneworld confirmed the news at this week’s Air Berlin inauguration event at the forthcoming Berlin Brandenburg Will Brandt airport (click here for a special report from the ceremony).

The alliance said that the airline would begin commercial service on Sunday (March 25), although Iberia has yet to confirm initial routes for the new carrier, with Oneworld saying “The airline expects to detail its initial destinations and schedules soon”.

The launch of Iberia Express has been dogged by strikes by Iberia pilots who are members of the Spanish union Sepla, with the union arguing that the creation of the low-cost carrier contravenes agreements made with Iberia during the merger of the Spanish airlines with British Airways.

The union recently agreed to cancel 24 days of strikes which had been due to take place over the Easter holiday period, after the Spanish government agreed to appoint a mediator to try and resolve the issue.

Iberia Express will operate short and medium-haul flights connecting to and from Iberia’s long-haul network at Madrid. The carrier will offer a two-class business and economy configuration, initially operating four Airbus A320s and building to 13 aircraft by the end of this year.

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Report by Mark Caswell

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