Oneworld just made an announcement that LATAM has chosen Oneworld as the alliance for both airlines. TAM is expected to leave the Star Alliance on the second quarter of 2014. This is full 12 months from now. You can read the Oneworld press release about TAM joining the alliance here.
LAN and TAM merged last year and it was expected that the combined airline would be in the Oneworld alliance. LAN is a member of Onworld and TAM member of competing Star Alliance. When AviancaTaca joined the Star Alliance one condition was that the airline couldn’t be in the same alliance as TAM.
LAN’s Colombian subsidiary is becoming Oneworld affiliate airline in the fourth quarter of 2013.
What does this mean for Star Alliance frequent fliers
You will receive full Star Alliance wide Star Gold and Silver benefits until the airline exists the alliance that is expected in the second quarter of 2014. All the paid and award tickets issued on TAM will be honored beyond this date as well, as are frequent flier tickets on Star Alliance carriers issued using TAM miles.
What does this mean for Oneworld frequent fliers
You will receive Oneworld alliance benefits once the airline has officially joined the alliance. This is expected to happen sometime in the second quarter of 2014.
TAM leaving the Star Alliance was expected. It was unsure until now when this would happen, however. Good that they are giving full 12 month notice about this change.
LAN is bringing all their affiliates under the Oneworld umbrella. LAN Colombian joining the alliance as an affiliate is not a surprise.