What Airlines Are in Star Alliance? (All Past & Present Members)

If you found yourself here, you probably already know that Star Alliance is the world’s largest airline alliance. Having been founded in May 1997, not only does it transport more passengers and serve more airports than oneworld and SkyTeam but it is also older than the two.

Among other things, Star Alliance member airlines’ frequent flyers can enjoy benefits across the alliance thanks to Star Alliance Silver and Star Alliance Gold statuses.

Currently, Star Alliance has 26 full members – five of those founded the alliance while the rest joined the alliance later. Another dozen or so airlines were part of the alliance in the past but are not anymore, primarily due to going out of business or merging with another airline.

Star Alliance Member Airlines
Star Alliance member airlines operate some aircraft in the alliance’s livery.

Star Alliance Boasts 26 Airlines Across All Inhabited Continents

When Star Alliance was founded on May 14, 1997, it had only five airlines – Air Canada and United Airlines in North America, Lufthansa and Scandinavian Airlines in Europe, and Thai Airways in Asia. These five founding members are still part of Star Alliance (although Scandinavian Airlines has announced plans to leave the alliance). Since then, however, the alliance has also expanded considerably.

Today, Star Alliance consists of 26 airlines including 3 from Africa, 8 from Asia, 10 from Europe, 4 from the Americas, and 1 from New Zealand. Air India is the most recent airline to have joined the alliance and still be in it. The Indian flag carrier joined the alliance in July 2014.

Austrian Airlines
Austrian Airlines and some other Lufthansa Group airlines are members of the Star Alliance.
Air New Zealand
Air New Zealand is one of Star Alliance’s 26 members.

Below is a complete list of all current Star Alliance airlines including their date of joining, the countries and regions they are from, and their frequent flyer programs:

AirlineJoinedContinentCountryFrequent Flyer Program
Aegean Airlines2010-06-30EuropeGreeceMiles + Bonus
Air Canada1997-05-14North AmericaCanadaAeroplan
Air China2007-12-12AsiaChinaPhoenix Miles
Air India2014-07-11AsiaIndiaFlying Returns
Air New Zealand1999-05-03Australia and OceaniaNew ZealandAirPoints
All Nippon Airways1999-10-15AsiaJapanMileage Plan
Asiana Airlines2003-03-28AsiaSouth KoreaAsiana Club
Austrian Airlines2000-03-26EuropeAustriaMiles & More
Avianca2012-06-21South AmericaColombiaLifeMiles
Brussels Airlines2009-12-09EuropeBelgiumMiles & More
Copa Airlines2012-06-21North AmericaPanamaConnect Miles
Croatia Airlines2004-11-18EuropeCroatiaMiles & More
Egyptair2008-07-11AfricaEgyptEgyptair Plus
Ethiopian Airlines2011-12-13AfricaEthiopiaShebaMiles
EVA Air2013-06-18AsiaTaiwanInfinity MileageLands
LOT Polish Airlines2003-10-26EuropePolandMiles & More
Lufthansa1997-05-14EuropeGermanyMiles & More
Scandinavian Airlines1997-05-14EuropeDenmark/Norway/SwedenMiles & More
Shenzhen Airlines2012-11-29AsiaChinaPhoenix Miles
Singapore Airlines2000-04-01AsiaSingaporeKrisFlyer
South African Airways2006-04-10AfricaSouth AfricaVoyager
Swiss International Air Lines2006-04-01EuropeSwitzerlandMiles & More
TAP Air Portugal2005-03-14EuropePortugalMiles&Go
Thai Airways International1997-05-14AsiaThailandRoyal Orchid Plus
Turkish Airlines2008-04-01EuropeTurkeyMiles&Smiles
United Airlines1997-05-14North AmericaUnited StatesMileagePlus

13 Other Airlines Were Part of Star Alliance in the Past

In addition to the 26 airlines that are currently Star Alliance members, 13 airlines were members of the alliance in the past but are not anymore. The vast majority of these airlines simply went out of business (e.g. Spanair and VARIG) or merged with an airline belonging to a different alliance (e.g. US Airways and TAM).

The biggest losses for the alliance in terms of geographic coverage were, perhaps:

  • Ansett Australia, which left the alliance in 2001, shortly before going out of business in 2002, and cost the alliance a presence in Australia
  • British Midland, which was the only British airline in the alliance
  • VARIG, TAM Airlines, and Avianca Brasil, all of which provided at some point the alliance with a presence in Brazil
bmi British Midland
British Midland (bmi) used to be in Star Alliance before joining forces with oneworld’s British Airways.

Below is a complete list of all airlines that once belonged to Star Alliance but are no longer members, as well as the date they left the alliance and the reason they did so:

Adria Airways2004-11-182019-09-30Ceased operations
Ansett Australia1999-05-032001-09-12Financial difficulties
Avianca Brasil2015-07-222019-08-31Ceased operations
Blue12004-11-032012-11-01Scandinavian Airlines took over operations
British Midland International2000-07-012012-04-20Merged with British Airways
Continental Airlines2009-10-272012-03-03Merged with United Airlines
Mexicana2000-07-012004-03-31Started codesharing with American Airlines instead of United Airlines
Shanghai Airlines2007-12-122010-10-31Merged with China Eastern Airlines
Spanair2003-05-012012-01-27Ceased operations
TACA Airlines2012-06-212013-05-27Merged with Avianca
TAM Airlines2010-05-132014-03-30Merged with LAN Airlines
US Airways2004-05-042014-03-30Merged with American Airlines
VARIG1997-10-222007-01-31Ceased operations

Star Alliance Also Partners with Other (Not Only) Airlines

The 26 current and 13 past Star Alliance airlines mentioned above are full members – airlines that offer full perks to Star Alliance frequent flyers holding Silver/Gold statuses, etc. That said, quite a few other airlines are affiliated with the alliance in one way or another too. There are two main categories of such airlines.

First, there are affiliates of Star Alliance member airlines. While these airlines are not members of Star Alliance directly, they operate flights on behalf of Star Alliance member airlines or are otherwise related to them. When flying on these airlines, passengers with a Star Alliance status might have access to some or all the perks they would have when flying on a Star Alliance airline.

Examples of affiliates of Star Alliance airlines include Lufthansa CityLine which operates some of Lufthansa’s flights, ANA Wings which operates some of ANA’s flights, and Swiss’s subsidiary Edelweiss.

In the former two cases, the flights are operated under ANA’s flight numbers so passengers can enjoy regular Star Alliance status perks. In the case of Edelweiss, the flights are operated under Edelweiss’s code so passengers cannot enjoy Star Alliance status perks.

Lufthansa CityLine
Lufthansa CityLine is one of the airlines affiliated with Star Alliance.

Second, there are Star Alliance Connecting Partners. Currently, there are only two of those – Juneyao Airlines in China and THAI Smile in Thailand.

While these are not full members, they are integrated with other Star Alliance carriers to an extent and offer perks to Star Alliance Gold and Silver members.

THAI Smile
THAI Smile is one of two Star Alliance Connecting Partners.

In addition to airlines, in 2022, Deutsche Bahn – Germany’s railway company – became Star Alliance’s first Intermodal Partner. As part of the partnership, passengers can book flight tickets with train tickets included and those traveling in business or first class can the DB Lounge at Frankfurt Airport.


Star Alliance was originally founded in 1997 by five airlines including United Airlines, Air Canada, Scandinavian Airlines, Lufthansa, and Thai Airways. Today, the alliance has 26 full member airlines in total including all five original founding members.

Over the years, Star Alliance has also seen some members leave the alliance. When that happened, it was mostly due to two reasons – the member going out of business or merging with an airline belonging to a different alliance.

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