Delta Air Lines Cargo and Korean Air Cargo are launching joint belly cargo operations on the transpacific as part of their joint venture partnership signed in June last year.
That agreement aims to “offer world-class cargo services across one of the most comprehensive route networks in the trans-Pacific market,” the two carriers said.
The joint venture routes, on which Delta and Korean Air carried 268 million tonnes of belly cargo in 2017, will allow customers to work with either carrier to transport shipments across a broad network of flights. The expansive combined network formed by this partnership gives Delta and Korean Air’s shared customers access to more than 290 destinations in the Americas and more than 80 in Asia.
“The Delta and Korean Air JV means increased joint belly cargo capacity across the trans-Pacific as well as future co-location of key facilities, world-class reliability and the industry’s best customer service,” said Shawn Cole, Delta’s vice president – Cargo.
“The partnership also means a host of new destinations with commercial and logistics solutions across Asia and North America for these important markets.”
“We are excited to partner with Delta to create an unrivalled air cargo network across North America and Asia,” said Samsug Noh, senior vice president, head of Cargo Business Division, Korean Air.
“This is bolstered by Korean Air’s leading trans-Pacific air freight network, as well as Delta’s nationwide schedule and sales network within the US. I am confident that the partnership will further strengthen our capability to offer an unequalled expertise on all aspects of air cargo transportation.”
The new joint venture builds on nearly two decades of close partnership between Korean Air and Delta; both were founding members of the SkyTeam global airline alliance.
Delta and Korean Air currently transport a diverse range of cargo products in the trans-Pacific market. From the US, semi-conductor production facilities, perishables and e-commerce shipments are some of the key products shipped to Seoul and throughout Asia. In the reverse direction mobile phones, automobile parts and other electronics are carried.
Earlier this year, Delta and Korean Air co-located into the new, state-of-the-art Terminal 2 at Seoul’s Incheon International Airport. This means substantially reduced connecting times for both passengers and cargo, and one-roof warehousing is planned for the airport as well.
As one of the world’s largest airports, Incheon has among the fastest connection times in the region.
“We anticipate that Seoul Incheon will continue to grow as a major Asia gateway for Delta and Korean Air,” the two carriers said in a statement. From Seoul, Delta is the only US carrier to offer nonstop service to three major US gateways, including Seattle, Detroit and Atlanta, with service to Minneapolis launching in 2019. Korean Air provides the largest trans-Pacific air freight capacity.