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USAIR FILES FOR CODE-SHARING RIGHTS

 ARLINGTON, Va., Feb. 3 /PRNewswire/ -- USAir today applied to the U.S. Department of Transportation for rights to bring the advantages of a code-sharing agreement with British Airways to air travelers in 38 U.S. cities, in a program that will be phased in beginning May 1.
 The application was made in conjunction with a previously announced agreement under which British Airways has invested $300 million in USAir. As part of this agreement, USAir and British Airways will become code-sharing partners on flights linking selected U.S. cities and key transatlantic gateways served by British Airways.
 USAir Executive Vice President-Marketing W. Thomas Lagow said: "The travelling public will enjoy improved connections, coordinated handling and other features constituting a more convenient service. USAir and British Airways will arrange schedules to minimize transfer times and expedite travel.
 "Passengers will enjoy one-time through check-in and baggage check between interior U.S. cities and London. Air service consumers will enjoy a simplified reservations process involved in booking on just one carrier. The ability to file single-carrier tariffs will make quotation of fares to customers substantially easier and more accurate. Overall reliability and convenience of service will be significantly enhanced for our customers."
 A common airline industry practice, code-sharing means that certain USAir flights from selected U.S. cities to one of the international connecting hubs served jointly by USAir and British Airways will carry the airline designator codes of both USAir and British Airways (US and BA). While flown by USAir, these domestic flights will be presented in travel agent and airline reservation systems as British Airways flights connecting with other British Airways flights to London.
 The two carriers plan to begin phasing in this "seamless" service May 1 on selected flights between Syracuse, Rochester and Cleveland and the Philadelphia gateway. During June and July, certain flights from Cincinnati, Columbus, Dayton, Indianapolis and Nashville to Pittsburgh will be added. More cities and gateways are being determined and will be announced later.
 Code-sharing agreements are in place between a number of other airlines, among them United and British Midland, American and Cathy Pacific, Delta and Swissair, Continental and SAS, Northwest and KLM, and TWA and Malev.
 The proposed USAir/British Airways code-sharing services are authorized by the U.S.-U.K. Air Services Agreement, as amended in March 1991, to provide the U.K. with the right for its carriers to enter into code-share agreements with U.S. carriers on domestic U.S. routes. In return for permitting British carriers to code-share in U.S. domestic markets, United and American, two of the largest and strongest airlines in the world with their own domestic networks feeding their international routes, were granted authority to replace Pan Am and TWA as the two U.S. airlines allowed to serve London's Heathrow Airport.
 As stated at the time by DOT Secretary Samuel K. Skinner, "We offered new opportunities for British airlines in return for our ability to substitute stronger U.S. carriers at Heathrow. The U.K. has accepted. This agreement will provide important benefits for both nations as well as the traveling public."
 Support for the agreement and its benefits for U.S. air travelers came from both United and American Airlines, the two primary beneficiaries. In a statement at the time, United CEO Stephen Wolf said, "We particularly appreciate the superb efforts U.S. officials put forth to achieve this important aviation agreement."
 At the same time, American Airlines Executive Vice President- Planning and Finance Donald Carty, praised the secretary of transportation for a "masterful job successfully completing an extremely difficult negotiation with the British."
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 -0- 2/3/93
 /CONTACT: USAir Corporate Communications, 703-418-5100 or 310-417-1294 (Western Region)/
 (U BAB)


CO: USAir; British Airways; U.S. Department of Transportation ST: Virginia IN: AIR SU:

DC -- DC023 -- 2475 02/03/93 14:05 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Feb 3, 1993
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