Oman Air to join oneworld
I’m a big fan of Oman Air so today’s news is fantastic, although we will have to wait a bit. Previously the Oman Air loyalty scheme, Sinbad, didn’t really give many options where to credit miles. So even though I think Oman Air is not far off Qatar’s standards (and probably better in some ways), I haven’t flown them very frequently. It will be great to have another option to fly to the Middle East, Africa and Asia. Oman Air will join the oneworld® Alliance in 2024.
Following its integration into oneworld, it will provide the full range of oneworld benefits to customers travelling on its flights. Members of Oman Air’s Sindbad frequent flyer programme will be able to earn and redeem miles on all oneworld member airlines, with top-tier members receiving additional benefits including lounge access when travelling with other oneworld members.
Oman Air’s entry into oneworld will provide even more flights and destinations to customers planning global travel across the alliance’s members, making oneworld the only global airline alliance with three members in the Middle East after Qatar Airways and Royal Jordanian. Oman Air’s joining will add new destinations to the oneworld network including Duqm and Khasab in Oman and Chittagong (Bangladesh). oneworld Emerald, oneworld Sapphire and premium cabin customers will also gain access to three Oman Air lounges at Muscat, Salalah and Bangkok.
Launched in 1993, Oman Air is the national carrier of the Sultanate of Oman. It has transformed into an international carrier serving 41 destinations in more than 20 territories. It operates a modern fleet of more than 40 aircraft comprising Boeing 737s, 787s and Airbus A330s. Configured in a two or three-class cabin, Oman Air’s aircraft offer exclusive First Class Private Suites on longer-haul flights. The airline has received several awards including most recently the APEX Passenger Choice Award for Best Seat Comfort in the Middle East. You can read my reviews of Oman Air here.
Oman Air operates to five oneworld member airline hubs – Amman, Colombo, Doha, Kuala Lumpur and London Heathrow – and already codeshares with four oneworld member airlines: Malaysia Airlines, Qatar Airways, Royal Jordanian and SriLankan Airlines. Other destinations that may be of interest are Tanzania, Nairobi, Singapore, Bangkok, Kathmandu, most major airports in India and the UAE.
Oman Air will be the third new member of the alliance in five years. Royal Air Maroc joined the alliance in April 2020, adding oneworld’s first full member in the African continent. This was followed by Alaska Airlines in March 2021.
Flash IHG Points & Cash sale
IHG hotels are offering IHG One members a discount of 20% on the cash portion of your booking when you use Points & Cash for Reward Nights. Book by 24 June for stays up to 26 August.
Normally points and cash bookings are not particularly good value but they are useful if you haven’t got enough points. With IHG you are effectively buying points with the cash at a slightly better rate than the standard buying points rate. However, with 100% bonus offers being fairly frequent, the rate even with the 20% discount is still slightly worse than the 100% bonus offer. There is of course no guarantee that the 100% bonus will come back.
If you were to cancel your booking the full points are returned to your account. You do not get the cash back, only the points that you have “bought”.
You can find the offer page here.
Iberia Premium Economy sale – ends 21 June
Iberia has a sale on Premium Economy fares until the end of 21 June. If you are struggling to find reasonably priced business class seats (and who isn’t at the moment) then flying premium economy may be an option or buying premium but using miles to upgrade to business class. However, with Iberia you can only upgrade W class Premium Economy bookings so check the fare class if that is your plan. For example, you can upgrade US East Coast flights to business class from 8,500/15,000 Avios off peak/peak.
Here are some examples of the fares:
- New York from GBP 708
- Boston from GBP 762
- Havana from GBP 806
- Chicago from GBP 840
- Miami from GBP 922
- Mexico City from GBP 935
- Santo Domingo from GBP 988
- Panama from GBP 990
- Dallas from GBP 1151
- Lima from GBP 1178
As someone who lived and worked in Oman, I’m delighted to hear that Oman Air will join OneWorld. I miss the BA LHR-MCT flight, and hopefully it will come back now that it will connect two OneWorld hubs.
Good news about Omanair but I’m concerned that their recently announced interworking/codeshare arrangements with Qatar seem to have reduced the BA codeshares on Qatar flights. I had a booking made on ba.com for EDI/DOH/CMB all on QR metal with BA codeshares, but when the Colombo legs started to be operated by Omanair the BA codeshares disappeared and Ba.com announced that they had been cancelled. A good BA customer services agent was able to reinstate the bookings complete with retention of the tier points presumably because the flights retain their original Qatar flight numbers apparently as a wet lease because they have no Omanair number. But when I try to pick my seat, BA refers me to Qatar, Qatar refers me to Omanair, and Omanair doesn’t recognise the booking! Some phone calls ahead, I fear.
This sounds more of an isolate incident due to the wet lease. Hopefully by the time it happens it will all run smoothly.
As usual, IHG so called ‘Sales’ do not seem to be disappointing.
There is no transparency of discounts, so you are booking blind.
Also rare (if ever) to get discounted breakfast with reward night.
If you cancel then cash gets turned into points.
Good news about Oman tho.
Comments are closed.