Qatar Officially Joining Oneworld

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

As I reported last week, Qatar Airways plans to join the Oneworld alliance, and it made the announcement official today at a Oneworld press conference.

Hat tip to for this Instagram shot at the press conference.

The exact date hasn’t been announced yet, but it’s likely to take at least a year until the airline is fully integrated into the alliance. Though this move has been expected for a while, it’s bound to shake up the airline alliance status quo. Qatar is the first of the three major Middle East-based airlines, which also include Emirates and Etihad, to join one of the three major alliances.

According to this article today in the Wall Street Journal, though, Etihad has announced that it will partner with both Air France/KLM in SkyTeam and Air Berlin in Oneworld while not joining either alliance outright. This also comes on the heels of Qantas and Emirates’ joint announcement last month that the two airlines would be teaming up to open up routes through Asia, the Middle East and Europe for both carriers while Qantas left its traditional “Kangaroo Route” partnership with British Airways (Qantas’s Oneworld partner) behind.

All in all, it seems like we’ll be seeing these Middle East carriers playing much more significant roles both within and beyond the three traditional airline alliances thanks to ever-expanding routes, newer long-haul fleets and a central location that makes a lot of sense for routing of flights between the Americas and Asia; and Europe and Asia and the South Pacific.

More and more airline partnerships are taking place beyond the constraints of the traditional alliances, and we’re going to see a lot more of it as airlines continue to sign individual agreements with one another rather than pacting with a raft of other carriers all at once. As airlines become more nimble and take on more routes, there’s bound to be more competition both from outside alliances as well as between members of alliances, so it makes sense for airlines like Etihad and Emirates to take on partners individually (as with the Qantas deal). After all, airlines aren’t making a lot of money these days, so it’s a better business decision to partner with the strongest carriers out there possible rather than being weighed down by a dozen mid-performing partners in an alliance…especially when your bottom line is as good as some of these Middle East-based carriers’ are.

Stay tuned for further developments and official dates for Qatar’s entry into Oneworld and what it will mean for you and your miles.

American Express® Gold Card

With some great bonus categories, the American Express Gold Card has a lot going for it. The card offers 4x points at US restaurants, at US supermarkets (up to $25,000; then 1x), and 3x points on flights booked directly with airlines or through It is currently offering a welcome bonus of 35,000 bonus points after you spend $2,000 in the first three months.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 35,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $2,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 3 months.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. restaurants. Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X).
  • Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on
  • Earn up to $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with The Gold Card at Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Shake Shack, and Ruth's Chris Steak House. This is an annual savings of up to $120. Enrollment required.
  • $100 Airline Fee Credit: up to $100 in statement credits per calendar year for incidental fees at one selected qualifying airline.
  • Choose to carry a balance with interest on eligible charges of $100 or more.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Annual Fee is $250.
  • Terms apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
Regular APR
See Rates & Fees
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
See Terms
Recommended Credit
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.