Virgin Atlantic Airways joins SkyTeam – because it can
The announcement talked of the benefits to customers of improved frequent flyer benefits and greater access to SkyTeam members' global network.
However, Virgin Atlantic is already a member of an immunised joint venture on the North Atlantic, by far its most important market, with leading SkyTeam members Air France, KLM and Delta Air Lines (the latter also owns 49% of Virgin Atlantic).
Its relationship with these three partners could not really grow any closer as a result of SkyTeam membership. The benefits of Virgin's latest move will mainly be felt in other markets and by other SkyTeam airlines, but will be less significant than those already gained.
As much as anything, this feels like an exercise in completeness. It is doing it because it can.
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