[SAS Leaving Star Alliance 8/31] A Star Alliance Founding Member Will Switch To SkyTeam Next Year

SAS 737-800 in Longyearbyen, Svalbard, March 2016
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Update: SAS will leave the Star Alliance after 8/31. SkyTeam benefits with most airlines will start 9/1, while they transition to joining SkyTeam.

Originally posted on 10/3:

The Star Alliance was founded in 1997 by Air Canada, Lufthansa, SAS, Thai and United. It was the first global alliance and changed aviation for good.

But tough times have come for SAS and Air France-KLM won the bid to provide them with financing to exit bankruptcy.

As such, they will leave the Star Alliance before summer 2024 and join the SkyTeam Alliance. They will also be part of the Delta, Air France, KLM, and Virgin Atlantic joint venture across the Atlantic. Air France-KLM will have a 19.9% stake in the airline.

SAS award space can be hard to come by, though it does exist. I flew SAS business class to Svalbard back in 2016 and wasn’t a big fan, but it’s certainly a loss for the Star Alliance and a win for SkyTeam.

Time will tell if SAS joins the Flying Blue award scheme that currently includes Air France and KLM.

Have you flown on SAS? What do you think of this change?

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12 Comments On "[SAS Leaving Star Alliance 8/31] A Star Alliance Founding Member Will Switch To SkyTeam Next Year"

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Star Gold passengers will also lose SAS lounge access, used it in EWR with kosher food several times when flying LH.

Lord Dima

Yawn. Don’t see this really hurting Star Alliance with all the other options in Europe. I did enjoy hoping across 6 destinations in Norway (including to Svalbard) as part of just one way ticket on United.


My only experience with SAS could have turned into a nightmare: had two award tickets via United and they split our itinerary. I was traveling with my kid, talking to walls: can’t you see the kid is minor??? It did take some fight, luckily I was at the airport very early.
Got some both paid and award tickets for next spring. I hope I’ll make it.

Maier Solomon

Dan, I’m Diamond with DL. Tried matching with VS – no go, same team. So I matched with AA, then went to VS to match from AA. At first it worked till they found out I’m with DL. Asked, begged, that I’m matching from AA, not DL. Doesn’t work. Any suggestions?


How did they find out? Open a new VS account…

Maier Solomon

They’ll probably spot it. Same name, DOB, AA account. No?
Any other ideas?


I recently flew SAS from EWR. They have a good hard product in business class. However was disappointed they didn’t offer an option to order a KSML even after calling in. It was very interesting that a flight out of Newark, where it’s certainly easy for an airline to arrange a kosher meal, would not offer that option.
For me it was a first. And that’s certainly a reason to think twice before flying SAS again!


I have flown SAS numerous times, including a height-of-covid flight from ORD to CPH and the round-trip. They have done a credible job for many years for me. I liken them to Lufthansa in terms of service—nothing flashy, but reliable. I do lament the loss of access to the Nordics that this represents.


HOpefully this will work better than the way Skybenefits work on ITA

Ed Travel

The first time I flew to Europe was on SAS. It was a good product in the 90’s. Today they feel borderline like a low cost airline.


As a heavy SAS flyer, this will speed up my accruals toward another Million Miler level with the DL program.


connection in Europe will be limited –