Star Alliance: More Choice for Globetrotters

July 23, 2014   Business News
(PRLEAP.COM) July 23, 2014 - Johannesburg, South Africa The Star Alliance network, of which South African Airways is a member, has expanded its offer to globetrotters through the introduction of four new Round the World (RTW) fare levels. This gives customers a total of 14 RTW fares to choose from; three for travel in First Class, four for Business Class and the other seven for travel in Economy Class.

The most significant change is that for Economy Class. The applicable fare is now determined through a combination of the total number of stops and total mileage used. The best price option is the one which allows customers to travel for a maximum of 26,000 miles and make anywhere between three and five stops. Up to now, the higher mileage levels in Economy Class 29,000, 34,000 or 39,000 miles allowed a maximum of 15 stops. With the introduction of the new fare levels, customers can now select fewer stops in return for a lower ticket price. For example, a traveller using a 29,000 mileage RTW ticket can now opt to make only seven stops and hence save 10 percent on average.

Business Class flights have been made even more attractive, with passengers now being able to select a lower fare covering up to 26,000 miles. This is in addition to the already existing fare levels of 29,000, 34,000 or 39,000 miles which will continue to be offered. The number of stops allowed also remains unchanged for all Business Class RTW fare levels, with a minimum of three to a maximum of 15 stops.

To put the mileage levels in perspective, the circumference of the Earth measured at the Equator is approximately 24,901 miles. The fare levels offered allow the customer to select the mileage requirement which suits their personal travel needs best. Actual fares vary by market and, in general, offer better value for money than purchasing individual one-way tickets on separate airlines to cover the same itinerary. Children between the age of two and 11 pay 75 percent of the applicable adult fare, while infants under two who do not occupy a seat can be taken along for 10 percent of the applicable adult fare.

Customers can build their own routings within the mileage limits of the different fare levels. Travel needs to commence and end in the same country and in general be in one direction, either going East or West, although some limited zigzagging is permitted within a single continent. Both the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean must be crossed once.

Stops lasting a minimum of 24 hours must be made in at least three cities, with the overall itinerary including a maximum of five to 15 stops (total number of stops are dependent on the actual fare level). Further information can be found at: www.staralliance.com/en/fares/round-the-world-fare/. This page also leads to the Star Alliance Book and Fly tool (www.staralliance.com/en/booking/book-and-fly/#), which allows online booking and ticketing for the RTW fare. As an alternative, customers can also contact any of the 26 Star Alliance member airlines or a travel agent of their choice. In addition to the RTW fares, the Star Alliance network also offers the Circle Pacific Fare and five Regional Airpasses.

Customers travelling on Star Alliance RTW fares may in principle accrue miles in any of the 18 Frequent Flyer Programs (FFP) offered by the member airlines#. The collected miles can count towards earning Star Alliance Gold or Silver status and be redeemed for free flights, upgrades, hotel stays, etc.

Supporting the launch of the new fares, Star Alliance is running a multi-channel online marketing campaign.

More prominence has been given to the fares on www.staralliance.com, where a banner, displaying various globetrotting related items and souvenirs, allows customers to directly reach the "Book and Fly" section. This will be mirrored by the Star Alliance member airline websites, which now also feature the new imagery and link to "Book and Fly". Furthermore, travel-relevant internet sites such as Tripadvisor.com, Linkedin.com, Expedia.com, CNN.com and Seat Guru.com will also carry the Star Alliance campaign in selected markets.

Note: this press release does not reflect the full terms and conditions for RTW flight tickets; these can be found at www.staralliance.com # Accrual is subject to the individual terms and conditions of each FFP.

About Star Alliance:
The Star Alliance network was established in 1997 as the first truly global airline alliance to offer worldwide reach, recognition and seamless service to the international traveller. Its acceptance by the market has been recognized by numerous awards, including the Air Transport World Market Leadership Award and Best Airline Alliance by both Business Traveller Magazine and Skytrax. The member airlines are: Adria Airways, Aegean Airlines, Air Canada, Air China, Air New Zealand, ANA, Asiana Airlines, Austrian, Avianca, Brussels Airlines, Copa Airlines, Croatia Airlines, EGYPTAIR, Ethiopian Airlines, EVA Air, LOT Polish Airlines, Lufthansa, Scandinavian Airlines, Shenzhen Airlines, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways, SWISS, TAP Portugal, Turkish Airlines, THAI and United. Air India has been announced as a future member airline with Avianca Brasil to join under the existing Avianca membership. Overall, the Star Alliance network offers more than 18,000 daily flights to 1,269 airports in 193 countries.

About South African Airways
South African Airways is a Star Alliance member that offers flights to 38 destinations worldwide. Domestically, SAA operates 544 flights a week between Johannesburg Cape Town, Durban, East London and Port Elizabeth. Regionally SAA offers 24 destinations across the African continent and its international network creates links to all major continents from South Africa through 10 direct routes. In the regional category, SAA has received the Skytrax 'Best Airline in Africa' Award for 11 consecutive years. For more detail please visit, www.flysaa.com/za/en/.
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