February 15th, 2011
10:47 AM GMT
It used to be really simple. When taking a flight you chose your national flag carrier or whichever airline happened to be going from A to B. When there was a choice, braver hearts might be adventurous and fly an unusual airline to add a bit of local color and mystique to the trip!
But individual airlines couldn't fly to all places and suddenly the world was a small place. Code sharing came along and we found ourselves on those unknown airlines whether we liked it or not. Then, in 1997, code sharing went into overdrive and the airline alliances were born.