Calgary - Delta Air Lines and WestJet want to strengthen their partnership by establishing a joint venture. The objective of the partnership is to strengthen the positions of both companies on the cross-border market between the United States and Canada.

On December 6, Delta and WestJet announced the signing of a preliminary memorandum of understanding, with the intention of strengthening their existing partnership to form a commercial joint venture. The agreement covers the transborder market between the United States and Canada, the second largest international segment for travel.

The joint venture will provide customers access to an extensive cross-border network, world-class airline products, enhanced frequent flyer benefits, shared airport amenities and facilities, and a smoother travel experience,
explained the two North American carriers.

In concrete terms, the joint venture should result in coordinated schedules for new non-stop flights to new destinations, expanded code sharing and optimized connections on the Delta and WestJet networks in the United States and Canada.

Both companies also plan to offer new " frequent flyer" benefits, including reciprocal benefits for members with the highest level status in loyalty programs.

WestJet is the ideal partner for us in the US-Canada cross-border segment with a strong brand and an employee and customer-centric culture,
said Steve Sear, Global Sales Manager at Delta.

It's a big step for the company to acquire an international dimension,
quoted Ed Sims, Commercial Director at WestJet

Headquartered in Calgary, WestJet ranks second among Canadian airline operators after Air Canada. It is currently working with 45 partner companies.

Based in Atlanta, Delta has 25 years of experience in joint venture development. Following the agreement with WestJet, the SkyTeam member company will be able to count on eight leading partnerships with companies in Europe, Latin America, Asia, Australia and therefore Canada.

The agreement between Delta and WestJet is subject to the approval of the relevant regulatory authorities in the United States and Canada.