Just the day before, information appeared that Deutsche Bahn — the largest German railway operator, often referred to by the abbreviation DB, — officially joins Star Alliance as a non-aviation partner.
DB's membership in Star Alliance will become effective August 1, 2022. The new model aims to connect air travel with trains, buses, ferries and other modes of transport in the future.
In fact, this is not the first time that Star Alliance members have partnered with rail companies.
Lufthansa Express Rail started over 20 years ago and provides a combined train and flight booking service.
This is actually very convenient for passengers: if your train arrives at the airport with a delay and you are late for a transfer , your ticket will be automatically rebooked for a later flight.
But when booking individual tickets, money for an unused flight due to a delay will not be returned. However, a combined flight and train ticket is delivered as a single itinerary, meaning it can be purchased at one ticket office and with one booking number.
The ultimate goal of Deutsche Bahn joining Star Alliance is to spread a single booking process and other Star Alliance airlines.
This will allow customers to purchase a single combined flight and train ticket with seat reservation, seamless through check-in and baggage handling.
In addition, business travelers and first class airlines of Star Alliance members will have access to DB lounges when traveling on combined routes.
Once DB becomes an active member of Star Alliance, you will be able to earn points or miles for the rail segment on your own loyalty account. Unless, of course, you bought a combined ticket.
However, it is not yet clear in what proportions bonuses and miles will be awarded in different segments.
Today, there are no Star Alliance search engine train stations as destinations, but the wait is not long.