Good news for South Africans and South Americans alike - the three South American carriers Avianca, TACA Airlines and Copa Airlines joined the Star Alliance, the world's first and largest global airline alliance. The Star Alliance, to which South African Airways has belonged for more than 10 years, now has 27 members offering more than 21500 daily flights to 1356 airports in 193 countries.
With Avianca, TACA Airlines and Copa Airlines now being part of the Star Alliance network, passengers from within and outside the region will be able to connect seamlessly through the Copa Airlines hubs in Panama City (Panama) and Bogota (Colombia) and the Avianca, TACA Airlines hubs in Bogota (Colombia), San Salvador (El Salvador), Lima (Peru) and San Jose (Costa Rica).
Avianca, the flag carrier of Columbia, and TACA Airlines, agreed to a strategic merger in October 2009, creating a combined network focusing on North, Central and South America, the Caribbean and cities in Europe. The two airlines are currently operating international flights to more than 100 destinations around the world. Panama's national airline, Copa Airlines, together with its partner airline Copa Airlines Colombia (formerly known as Aero Republica) is currently offering flights to 64 destinations in 29 countries.