An Emirates Airlines Boeing 777-31H(ER) takes off from Los Angeles International Airport on January 13, 2021.
Aaronp / Bauer-Griffin | GC Images | Getty Images
United Airlines and Emirates will sell seats on each other’s planes, marking a turnaround in the former foes’ business models.
As part of the deal, United said it would begin flying to Dubai next year.
The code-sharing agreement, which the executives announced on Wednesday, will give the airlines access to the other carrier’s destinations and is the latest sign of thawing relations between US and Gulf carriers, especially as international air travel resumes after more than two years of the Covid -19 pandemic.
It will also allow passengers to earn and burn frequent flyer miles on any carrier.
United and other major US carriers such as Delta Air Lines and American Airlines have spent years lobbying against the expansion of major Gulf airlines into the United States, arguing that state-owned airlines compete unfairly with the support of government subsidies, which those countries have denied.
Emirates told CNBC it is ending its codeshare partnership with United rival JetBlue Airways on October 30. Meanwhile, Abu Dhabi-based Etihad said it will expand its partnership with New York-based JetBlue.
Qatar Airways and American Airlines said in June they would expand their codeshare partnership.