Avianca Brasil, the first South American carrier to offer inflight WiFi on board its aircraft, has announced it will officially leave Star Alliance with effect from September 1, 2019. The airline is formally known as Ocean Air Linhas Aéreas S/A but did business as Avianca Brasil.
The struggling carrier could not keep to its original plans to continue flying despite filing for bankruptcy at the end of last year. Avianca Brasil has had to cancel more than 1,000 flights this April alone after being forced to return the majority of its aircraft to leasing companies.
The São Paulo-headquartered airline's departure from Star Alliance comes following several months of bankruptcy protection along with the withdrawal of its Air Operator Certificate (AOC) by Brazil's civil aviation regulator ANAC.
That said, in no way will Avianca Brasil's exit from Star Alliance affect Bogota-based Avianca S.A.'s membership in the major airline alliance. With Avianca Brasil's exit, Star Alliance will have a total of 27 member airlines starting this September.
For those who are wondering, the airline alliance will still retain its title as the world's biggest airline alliance. Additionally, it will continue to maintain a competitive network in the region, so travelers have nothing to worry about.
As it stands, 11 Star Alliance member airlines operate direct flights to and from Brazil. These 11 Star Alliance member airlines are Air Canada; Avianca S.A.; Air China; Copa Airlines; Ethiopian Airlines; Lufthansa; SWISS; South African Airways; TAP Air Portugal; Turkish Airlines; and United Airlines.
These carriers offer hundreds of flights weekly from 11 domestic points in Brazil to 17 Star Alliance hubs. Travelers can go on their journey to further connect with more than 700 international destinations from the Star Alliance hubs.