Oman Air will be joining the Oneworld alliance as of 2024, bringing the colours and flavours of Oman to more travellers as they take the major step of joining a global airline alliance.
Since airline alliances allow all of its member airline’s mileage programs to be redeemed on all partner airlines, this means that we’ll be able to book Oman Air flights using fellow Oneworld mileage currencies like British Airways Avios, Cathay Pacific Asia Miles, and Alaska Mileage Plan.
Oman Air: The Newest Oneworld Member Airline
Oman Air expressed their desire to join Oneworld back in September of 2021, so this announcement should come as no surprise.
For what it’s worth, the airline’s entry into Oneworld is projected to take place by 2024, which is still a decent ways away. Thus, this is very much something to look forward to in the future as we take a look at the possible mileage redemption avenues ahead.
Oman Air’s long-haul flights stretch across Europe and South East Asia, flying as far as London and Manila. They do not operate any flights to North America.
Technically, Oman Air isn’t adding a significant number of new destinations to Oneworld, given the airline’s already strong coverage in the region with Qatar Airways and Royal Jordanian. However, Oman Air does bring much more frequent connectivity to complement its Middle Eastern peers.
Although, say, Qatar Airways Qsuites is a truly spectacular product, Oman Air offers a strong First Class and business class product in their own right, and one I would be happy to fly on again.
In business class, Oman Air is operating Apex Suites, which are identical to Japan Airlines’s flagship product. The 2-2-2 seating might not sound that competitive, but the privacy afforded window seats are unparalleled.
Meanwhile, in First Class, Oman Air has a 1-2-1 configuration onboard their Boeing 787 Dreamliners, complete with sliding doors, pajamas, and caviar.
Finally, we can’t ignore their lounge offerings at their home base of Muscat, with à la carte dining and complimentary spa treatments in the Oman Air First Class Lounge and sleeping rooms in the Oman Air Business Class Lounge.
New Oneworld Redemptions on Oman Air
Come 2024, we will be able to redeem Oneworld mileage currencies like British Airways Avios and Cathay Pacific Asia Miles on Oman Air. Considering the ease of earning both currencies in Canada, it’s worth taking a look at how to leverage both programs to travel on Oman’s national carrier.
British Airways Avios uses a distance-based award chart, so that should work well for the majority of Oman Air’s domestic routes, routes in the Gulf area, and to the Indian subcontinent, which represent the majority of their flights.
All domestic flights, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, and Karachi, Pakistan fall into the shortest Avios mileage band of 0–650 miles. Based on current Avios pricing conventions, these flights would cost just 6,000 Avios one-way in economy class or 12,500 Avios in business class.
One mileage band further and it’s still quite a good deal, with Kuwait, Riyadh, the rest of Pakistan, and Western India set to cost 9,000 Avios one-way in economy class or 16,500 Avios in business class.
Regarding Oman Air’s long-haul network, you’ll notice that Istanbul, Bangkok, and all of Tanzania fall under 3,000 miles in distance. Based on the current Avios pricing, these would cost 13,000 Avios in economy class and 38,750 Avios in business class.
All of Europe, along with Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta will fall one mileage band beyond, pricing out at 20,750 Avios in economy class and 62,000 Avios in business class, respectively.
Another proposition is to use Asia Miles, which also operates a distance-based award chart. A flight from one of the long-haul destinations to Muscat would cost a similar level of 61,000 Asia Miles.
Asia Miles would also be the more favourable program for any connecting itineraries, since it calculates the number of points required using the total cumulative distance (and not the sum of individual segments like Avios).
A one-way business class flight on London–Muscat–Hyderabad, for example, comes out to 4,992 miles flown, falling just below the upper bound of Asia Miles’s “Medium” distance band and thus costing the same 61,000 Asia Miles as a flight only to Muscat.
Finally, don’t forget the implications on the Oneworld multi-carrier chart for both Avios and Asia Miles. The relatively short distances of Oman Air’s flights should add welcome new possibilities to plan a multi-stop trip around the world at favourable rates.
In terms of award availability, Oman Air is very consistent with releasing award space, typically offering up one First Class seat and two business class seats on every flight.
And lastly, there’s no news about Oman Air’s current partnership with Aeroplan, but I wouldn’t personally expect this partnership to change upon Oman Air’s accession into Oneworld in 2024.
After all, while cross-alliance airline partnerships are uncommon, they do exist here and there, similar to how we can redeem Aeroplan points on select Cathay Pacific routes or redeem Alaska miles on Singapore Airlines flights.
Oman Air will become the 14th Oneworld member airline when they formally join the alliance by 2024. I’d expect further details about the transition to emerge over the next few years.
Oneworld is rapidly growing their membership following the addition of Alaska Airlines and Royal Air Maroc in recent years, increasing the value of the miles we hold within their alliance while widening the alliance’s range of products and destinations.
Although Oman Air does not fly to North America, the airline provides useful additional connectivity to the Middle East region, from which it’s very easy to catch a flight to just about anywhere.