Delta Air Lines and Riyadh Air forge strategic partnership to enhance travel between North America and Saudi Arabia

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Delta Air Lines and Riyadh Air have signed a Strategic Cooperation Memorandum of Understanding aimed at improving connectivity and offering premium travel options across North America, Saudi Arabia, and beyond. The agreement, signed at Delta’s World Headquarters in Atlanta, sets the stage for a strategic partnership to strengthen both airlines’ networks and foster growth.

Key points of the partnership include:

  • Enhanced Connectivity: The partnership will introduce new travel choices for consumers, including future Delta services between the U.S. and Riyadh, and will facilitate interline and codeshare connectivity.
  • Exclusive Partnership: Delta will be Riyadh Air’s exclusive partner in North America, while Riyadh Air will be Delta’s exclusive partner in Riyadh and beyond.
  • Customer Benefits: Travelers will enjoy a broad range of benefits such as improved loyalty programs, elevated customer experiences, and access to an extensive network of destinations.
  • Future Plans: The airlines plan to explore a deeper partnership, potentially forming an immunized joint venture for collaborative network planning and growth.
  • Sustainability Commitment: Both airlines are dedicated to implementing the best sustainability practices in their operations.

Delta CEO Ed Bastian emphasised the mutual commitment to providing an exceptional customer experience, while Riyadh Air CEO Tony Douglas highlighted the shared goals and high standards of both airlines. The partnership is expected to open new destinations in Saudi Arabia and beyond for Delta customers, and offer Riyadh Air customers access to Delta’s extensive North American network.

The collaboration aligns with Saudi Arabia’s significant investments in its tourism sector, including luxury resorts, historical sites, and the 2030 Riyadh Expo. Riyadh Air, set to begin operations in 2025, aims to become a premier carrier in the Middle East, while Delta celebrates its 100th anniversary next year as a leading global airline.

This strategic partnership is poised to transform travel options and experiences for passengers travelling between North America, Saudi Arabia, and beyond.

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