Featured image: Riyadh Air

Riyadh Air, Singapore Airlines Sign First Partnership

DALLAS — Riyadh Air (RX) and Singapore Airlines (SQ) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to establish a new partnership. This is the first partnership agreement for the new Saudi carrier.

The Riyadh (RUH) based airline announced the partnership on 2 June. The agreement was inked by RX’s Chief Executive Officer Tony Douglas and SQ’s CEO Goh Choon Phong on the sidelines of the 80th International Air Transport Association (IATA) Annual General Meeting and World Air Transport Summit in Dubai (DXB).

Singapore Airlines 9V-SHA Airbus A350-900. Photo: Noah Pitkin/Airways

Interline Agreement

The airlines will also work on potential areas of commercial cooperation, including codeshare arrangements, reciprocal benefits for their frequent flyer program members, cargo services, customer experience, and digital innovation as a precursor to a deeper, long-term, strategic partnership.

Tony Douglas, Chief Executive Officer, Riyadh Air, said, “Our strategic partnership with Singapore Airlines unlocks significant benefits for our future guests as it grows our network in partnership with the World’s Best Airline. We see huge potential for strong connectivity in South East Asia and both Australia and New Zealand through the award-winning hub at Singapore Changi Airport while also providing opportunities for westbound passengers to connect across the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Middle East region on Riyadh Air. This relationship is a meaningful and deep cooperation that starts with a wide-ranging codeshare agreement and is expected to include a broad range of areas including digital and technology, loyalty and cargo.”

Under the MoU, both carriers will explore opportunities for interline connectivity on each other’s services. However, this is subject to regulatory approval. This will potentially offer RX passengers access to SQ’s network in South East Asia and the South West Pacific region. Furthermore, it will enable SQ’s passengers greater access to the Middle East region through RX’s route network.

Goh Choon Phong, Chief Executive Officer, Singapore Airlines, said, “This win-win strategic partnership with Riyadh Air will enable us to offer even more options, enhanced connectivity, and greater benefits to our customers. Together, we can facilitate the growth of passenger travel between Saudi Arabia and Singapore, and beyond, via our respective networks, supporting both tourism and business links. The MoU will also allow us to find ways to work together to enhance customer experience and cargo services, and harness digital tools and solutions, potentially bringing greater benefits to both airlines in the future.”

Photo: Simone Chellini/Airways

A New Saudi Airline

Riyadh Air is a new airline based in Saudi Arabia. It is expected to commence commercial operations in 2025 and offer scheduled flights to and from the Middle East. RX will become Saudi Arabia’s second flag carrier after Saudi Airlines.

The new airline's main hub will be at King Khalid International Airport in RUH. RX will operate domestic and international scheduled flights to over 100 destinations in the Middle East and six continents. Its fleet will consist of Boeing 787 aircraft.

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