North America

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Press Release
Star Alliance Chief Executive Board Approved Membership

Beijing, China - December 13th, 2007 - At their annual Board Meeting, the CEO’s of the Star Alliance member airlines have today voted to accept the application of Air India to become a future member of the alliance.

Glenn Tilton, Chairman and CEO of United Airlines, in his capacity as the Chairman of Meeting said: “India has long been on the radar of Star Alliance; after all it is one of the world’s fastest growing economies and aviation markets. Having now come to an agreement with Air India makes us the first airline alliance to secure a member in India, which will enable our customers to receive more benefits when travelling to, from and within India in the future.”

“Air India is delighted in being invited to join Star Alliance. This invitation comes in the wake of Air India’s merger with India’s leading domestic carrier Indian Airlines, thus making Air India the prime player in the Indian subcontinent. In addition, the recently announced fleet expansion of over 100 aircraft will help Air India serve the travelling public better in terms of global reach and services. In being selected as a future Star Alliance member, Air India will add value to passengers patronising member airlines of the alliance”, said Vasudevan Thulasidas, Chairman and Managing Director, Air India.

The specialised teams at Air India, Star Alliance and its member carriers will now be working on the integration process, which once completed, will make Air India a part of the Star Alliance network, currently consisting of 19 members.

About Air India:
Air India is India's finest flying Ambassador. The urge to excel and the enthusiasm, which characterised Air India's first flight, way back on October 15, 1932, is quintessential even today - thanks to Air Indians who have kept alive the tradition of flying high. Air India is set to emerge as a world class international carrier following its merger with Indian, the country’s leader in the domestic sector. The merger has commenced smoothly. The re-branding exercise is underway and very shortly passengers will see the unified face of the new invigorated Air India. The merged entity, which will have a fleet of 115 plus aircraft initially, will offer passengers seamless travel across domestic and international routes. It will also have one of the youngest fleets amongst the international airlines.
About Star Alliance:
The Star Alliance network was established in 1997 as the first truly global airline alliance to offer customers worldwide reach and a smooth travel experience. Star Alliance was voted Best Airline Alliance by Business Traveller Magazine in 2003, 2006 and 2007 and by Skytrax in 2003, 2005 and 2007. The members are Air Canada, Air China, Air New Zealand, ANA, Asiana Airlines, Austrian, bmi, LOT Polish Airlines, Lufthansa, Scandinavian Airlines, Shanghai Airlines, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways, Spanair, SWISS, TAP Portugal, THAI, United and US Airways. Regional member carriers Adria Airways (Slovenia), Blue1 (Finland) and Croatia Airlines enhance the global network. Air India, EgyptAir and Turkish Airlines have been accepted as future members. Overall, the Star Alliance network offers more than 17,000 daily flights to 897 destinations in 160 countries.

For further information please contact:

Star Alliance Press Office
Tel: +49 69 96375 183
Fax: +49 69 96375 683