Skyteam Alliance Airline Network Review | finder.com
skyteam (1)

SkyTeam Alliance Airline Network

We value our editorial independence, basing our comparison results, content and reviews on objective analysis without bias. But we may receive compensation when you click links on our site. Learn more about how we make money from our partners.

Earn and redeem miles with over a dozen airlines using a single credit card.

Starting with four airlines in 2000, the SkyTeam alliance has grown into a strong network with 20 of the world’s major carriers. It now manages more than 750 million passengers a year and provide access to more than 750 airport lounges worldwide. This gives you the chance to travel globally and enjoy perks and benefits by being a frequent flyer to one of the member airlines.

How does the SkyTeam Alliance program work?

SkyTeam does not have its own reward program. Instead, membership in any of its 20-member airlines’ reward programs gives you access to benefits across the entire alliance network.

This means that having an airline credit card from one of the alliance members lets you earn and redeem miles across all members. Plus, depending on your elite status with your airline, you can enjoy SkyTeam elite perks and benefits.

Which US airline is part of the SkyTeam alliance?

Delta Air Lines is the only SkyTeam alliance member in the US. This makes it the most valuable SkyTeam credit card if you frequently fly between the states. And if you occasionally travel abroad, you can earn and redeem miles on other SkyTeam alliance flights.

Our pick for a SkyTeam Alliance airline credit card

Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express

  • Earn 30,000 bonus miles after spending $1,000 in purchases on your new card in your first 3 months and a $50 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase with your new card within your first 3 months.
  • Earn 2 miles on every dollar spent on purchases made directly with Delta. Earn 1 mile for every eligible dollar spent on purchases.
  • Check your first bag free on Delta flights - that's a savings of up to $200 per round trip for a family of four.
  • Want even more flexibility? Pay with Miles is a card member feature that gives you the option to redeem miles for all or part of the price of your tickets on Delta.com.
  • Settle into your seat sooner with priority boarding.
  • Enjoy a $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
  • Terms apply.
Read less
Read more
See Rates & Fees
Promoted

Benefits of SkyTeam Alliance membership

Standard SkyTeam Alliance membership offers perks that include:

  • Flexible miles spending.
    Even though you’re earning miles in one airline program, you can spend your miles on flights across all member airlines.
  • Flight connections.
    With such an extensive network of flights, you can plan an around the world trip on one single ticket. The Go Round the World Pass lets you make up to 15 stops during your journey, worldwide. Despite flying on different airlines, you’ll still earn miles from each flight.
  • Round the World Planner.
    This interactive online tool lets you plan your own trip, add and delete stops, choose flights, compare routes and save your itinerary over multiple sessions.
  • Lounge access.
    SkyTeam Elite Plus members, as well as Business and First Class travelers, enjoy complimentary access to 750 SkyTeam lounges across the world.
  • Guaranteed reservation on sold-out flights.
    If you’re an Elite Plus member you can be assured of a seat on any of SkyTeam’s long-haul flights, worldwide.
  • Baggage allowance.
    SkyTeam Elite members can carry up to 10 kilograms — about 22 pounds — of extra baggage, while SkyTeam Elite Plus members can carry up to an additional 20 kilograms — about 44 pounds. Both tier members can carry one extra piece of luggage.
  • Priority check-in and boarding.
    Both Elite and Elite Plus members enjoy the benefits of faster check-in, priority seating and can board at their convenience.
  • Corporate contracts.
    SkyTeam offers corporate agreements tailored to meet your company’s business travel needs.
  • Corporate meetings.
    SkyTeam can also plan global events for your business, including packaging discount airfares for attendees, and providing promotional support materials.

holiday-planning895x200

Skyteam Alliance status levels

You become entitled to more privileges when you ascend the tier levels of SkyTeam Elite and SkyTeam Elite Plus. Each SkyTeam tier is equated to a tier of your primary airline reward program, and you can earn it through your primary membership program.

Once you’ve earned elite status in your primary program, you’re recognized as a SkyTeam Elite frequent flyer across all member airlines.

Perks of SkyTeam Elite status

  • Priority reservation waitlist where permitted
  • Priority seating
  • Priority check-in
  • Priority boarding
  • Extra baggage allowance

Benefits of SkyTeam Elite Plus status

  • Priority reservation waitlist where permitted
  • Priority seating
  • Priority check-in
  • Priority boarding
  • Extra baggage allowance
  • Priority baggage handling on arrival
  • Guaranteed full-fare Y-class tickets when purchased more than 24 hours prior to departure
  • Airport lounge access worldwide, plus one guest

The above Elite Plus priority services are branded as SkyPriority and are also available to First and Business Class passengers.

Which Delta status tiers and SkyTeam alliance tiers correspond?

  • Delta Silver Medallion status equals SkyTeam Elite.
  • Delta Gold Medallion status or higher equals SkyTeam Elite Plus.

Which airlines belong to the SkyTeam Alliance?

  • Aeroflot
  • Aerolíneas Argentinas
  • Aeromexico
  • Air Europa
  • Air France
  • Alitalia
  • China Airlines
  • China Eastern
  • China Southern
  • Czech Airlines
  • Delta Air Lines
  • Garuda Indonesia
  • Kenya Airways
  • KLM
  • Korean Air
  • Middle East Airlines — Air Liban
  • Saudia
  • Tarom
  • Vietnam Airlines
  • Xiamen Air
Airline Information
aeroflot-russian-airlines-logoAeroflot Russia’s national carrier Aeroflot currently operates flights to 131 destinations in 50 countries, 45 destinations within Russia. It has a fleet of 190, makes 600 daily departures and serves 26.1 million passengers yearly.
aerolineas-logoAerolíneas Argentinas One of South America’s leading airlines. Based in Buenos Aires, it flies to 18 international destinations in the Americas, Europe and the South Pacific. Within Argentina, Aerolineas Argentinas flies to 35 locations. It serves 58 destinations in total with 248 daily departures and has 8.3 million passengers annually.
aeromexico-logoAeromexico Mexico’s global airline Aeromexico has flights to 78 destinations in 45 countries, including the US, Canada, Central and South America and Europe, as well as direct flights to Asia. It operates 600 daily flights and serves 15.5 million passengers annually.
air-europia-logoAir Europa Headquartered in Spain, this European airline flies to 42 destinations in 19 countries including Europe, Western Africa and the Americas. It has a fleet of 43 planes making 184 daily departures, and serves 8.1 million passengers annually.
airfrance-logoAir France France’s main airline operates 1,500 daily flights in Europe and around the world. It covers 191 destinations, 95 countries and serves 51.6 million passengers each year.
alitalia-logoAlitalia Italy’s largest airline Alitalia flies to 83 destinations across 41 countries with a fleet of 120. Its daily flight departures stands at 500 and annual passenger count at 23.2 million.
china-airlines-logoChina Airlines Taiwan’s largest airline company China Airlines serves 95 destinations worldwide, connecting Asia, Europe, North America and Oceania. It covers 29 countries with 238 daily departures and records 14.1 million passengers annually.
china-eastern-logoChina Eastern One of the three major Chinese airlines, China Eastern flies to 217 destinations across 26 countries. With 1,880 daily flights, this airline transports 79.1 million passengers every year.
china-southern-airlines-logoChina Southern With over 1900 flights daily, China Southern’s network spans 190 destinations across 40 countries. It transports 86.5 million passengers yearly, and holds the best flight safety record among Chinese airlines.

czech-airlines-logo

Czech Airlines

The Czech Republic’s flagship carrier, Czech Airlines flies to 40 destinations across 22 countries. With 54 daily departures and fleet of 24, its yearly passenger load stands at 2.8 million people.
delta-airlines-logoDelta Air Lines Headquartered in Atlanta, this American airline flies to 326 destinations in 59 countries. It offers 5,000 daily departures with a large fleet of 700, and serves a staggering 170 million passengers each year.
garuda-indonesia-logoGaruda Indonesia Indonesia’s flagship airline Garuda Indonesia flies to 70 destinations worldwide in 59 countries. It operates 534 daily departures and has a yearly passenger load of 19.6 million.
kenya-airwaysKenya Airways Africa’s leading carrier Kenya Airways is based in Nairobi and flies to 62 locations across 48 countries. It serves 3.7 million travelers each year with 154 daily flights.
klm-logoKLM Founded in 1919, Royal Dutch Airlines is based in the Netherlands and remains the world’s oldest carrier operating under its original name. KLM flies to 144 destinations and covers 74 countries. It makes 616 daily departures and carries 26.6 million passengers each year.
korean-air-logoKorean Air Among the founding members of the SkyTeam Alliance, Korean Air covers 129 destinations across 46 countries. It operates 430 daily departures and serves 23 million passengers annually.
mea-logoMiddle East Airlines – Air Liban Lebanon’s national carrier Middle East Airlines is the leading airline in the region. Based in Beirut, it serves 31 destinations across 21 countries with 62 daily departures. It has a fleet of 17 planes and an annual passenger load of 2.3 million.
saudia-logoSaudia Saudi Arabia’s flagship carrier is based in Jeddah and flies to 26 domestic and 53 international destinations across 36 countries, with 506 daily departures. It has a fleet of 117 aircraft and an annual passenger count of 25 million.
tarom-logoTarom This Romanian flagship airline is based in Bucharest and travels to 40 destinations across 24 countries. With 100 departures each day and a fleet of 23 aircraft, the airline serves 2.2 million passengers yearly.
vietnam-airlines-logoVietnam Airlines Connecting 47 destinations in 18 countries across the Asia-Pacific region, Europe and the United States, Vietnam Airlines makes 308 daily departures with a fleet of 82 aircraft, and serves 15 million passengers a year.
xiamen-air-logoXiamen Air Xiamen Air operates in south-eastern China and is headquartered in Xiamen. It connects 63 destinations across nine countries, and serves 18.5 million passengers annually with 646 daily flights and a fleet of 103.

Drawbacks of the SkyTeam Alliance Airline Network

  • Frequent-flyer motivated. Most of the alliance’s benefits are targeted at SkyTeam Elite and Elite Plus members, rather than casual flyers.
  • Limitations. Some of the alliance benefits are not extended to certain countries by certain airlines. And the network’s presence in some areas also remains limited, such as in the Oceania region.
  • Miles expire. Depending on your primary airline’s membership program, you may need to redeem your airline miles before the end of the calendar year, as some airlines reset miles on January 1st of each year.

Bottom line

While it doesn’t have complete coverage of every area, the SkyTeam Alliance Airline Network has a solid presence around the world among its 20 partner airlines. Frequent international travelers, especially those who favor Delta, could find a cobranded card within the SkyTeam Alliance helpful when it comes to earning and redeeming rewards.

Not all areas of the globe are serviced by the network though, and you may find other travel cards are better suited to your travel and spending habits.

Frequently asked questions

Back to top

Images: Shutterstock

Kliment Dukovski

Kliment Dukovski is a writer who specializes in global financial markets and personal finance, with a focus on credit cards. His main goal is to deliver honest and accurate information to help you make the right financial decision. When he's not writing about finance-related subjects, he writes sci-fi stories.

Was this content helpful to you? No  Yes

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder.com provides guides and information on a range of products and services. Because our content is not financial advice, we suggest talking with a professional before you make any decision.

By submitting your comment or question, you agree to our Privacy and Cookies Policy and Terms of Use.

Questions and responses on finder.com are not provided, paid for or otherwise endorsed by any bank or brand. These banks and brands are not responsible for ensuring that comments are answered or accurate.
Go to site