American Airlines - the largest passenger airline in North America - has just signed an agreement in Guangzhou, China with China Southern Airlines, Asia's biggest airline. This momentous milestone comes after China Southern Airlines announced that it will quit SkyTeam alliance with effect from January 1, 2019.

Both American Airlines and China Southern Airlines are thrilled to be taking steps to further strengthen their partnership with the launch of reciprocal frequent flyer benefits and lounge access on top of a significant expansion when it comes to codeshare cooperation.

American Airlines AAdvantage® members and China Southern Sky Pearl Club members have plenty to be happy about starting early next year as they will soon have the ability to earn and redeem miles on the other carrier's flights. Eligible China Southern passengers will also get to enjoy access to selected American Airlines lounges worldwide while eligible American Airlines passengers will enjoy access to China Southern Sky Pearl Lounges across Asia.

With the latest partnership between the two major carriers, American Airlines will have its AA code placed on China Southern-operated flights to 20 Chinese cities beyond Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK) and Shanghai Pudong International Airport (PVG). This is in addition to the 14 cities currently served by American Airlines on China Southern beyond Beijing Capital International Airport.

In the same vein, China Southern Airlines will have its CZ code placed on American Airlines-operated flights to 21 American cities beyond Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), San Francisco International Airport (SFO) and New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK). This is in addition to the 6 cities in the United States currently served by China Southern Airlines on American Airlines.

That's not all, American Airlines and China Southern Airlines will also start codesharing on each other's trans-Pacific flights between the United States and China.

We all know the Chinese travel market is booming and American Airlines is more pleased than ever now that the carrier has the opportunity to cooperate fully with China Southern Airlines. Furthermore, Beijing Daxing International Airport is set to open in 2019.

Denise Bay is a staff writer at Email: