One of the most desirable things in flying these days is to try to snap up some of the Middle Eastern carriers into some kind of an alliance. Emirates, Qatar, Etihad – they cover a LOT of routes that are very lucrative, but none of them is a partner with any alliance, although you can redeem for some of their flights using miles, but it’s a bit of a hit and miss.
So now Qatar joins oneworld, which is great news – you will now be able to redeem Avios points (previously not possible) and American AAaaaaaaaaaaadvantage points on it using standard respective mileage charts. We have yet to see where the real sweet spots will lie, but hey, they got Nobu (*the* Nobu) to celebrity-sign some of their menus, so at least the food should be all right in the front – and it’s not a dry cabin (like EgyptAir or Saudia), they got Chassagne Montrachet of varying years up front. So all in all, an excellent development.
Now all the greedy of us hope for is that someone fatfingers something so that we can get some economy-cost bookings that “accidentally” book into first class, kind of like what happened to Malaysian Airlines when they joined oneworld earlier this year… CDG-KUL on the A380 up front for economy-class miles.