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Pan Am, Do We Miss This Great Airline?  
User currently offlineFaustino927 From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 263 posts, RR: 0
Posted (7 years 2 weeks 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 4825 times:

Pan Am ended it's operations 16 years ago today. December 4th, 1991. Do any of you out there have any nice stories concerning this great airline. I was a F/A for the airline for 12 years and I still miss it. Pan Am gave me the opportunity to travel and go to places I never thought I would ever go. Go Pan Am forever!!, you will never be forgotten.


Obsessed is just a word the lazy use to describe the dedicated.
26 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offline747Dreamlifter From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (7 years 2 weeks 1 day 15 hours ago) and read 4801 times:

I was working for Aloha Airlines when PAN AM served Honolulu and the Orient. Pan Am will always rate TOP on my list.
I recall how professional and well dressed the flight attendants were. As far as I'm concern, your airline represented the USA best World-Wide. Working for AQ gave me the privilege to purchase an "Inter-line" ticket from HNL to JFK and on to LHR on your Boeing 747. On the day of my return to Hawaii, (from Heathrow), it gave me great pride to be an American and watch all the people in the terminal gravitate towards the window to admire the arrival another PanAm 747.

I wish to thank you and your associates for always extending great service to me. I never felt displaced for being a "non-revenue" or "discounted-fare" traveller on PanAm.

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User currently offlinePanAm747 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 4242 posts, RR: 8
Reply 2, posted (7 years 2 weeks 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 4800 times:

Ironically, I never had the opportunity to fly this airline. It will always be one of the greatest regrets of my life.

I do, however, have great memories of travelling from (what I thought was) podunk Bakersfield to Los Angeles to visit my great-aunt. When she lived in Downey, I was in heaven - I sat outside and watched planes go by for hours at a time...seeing anything and everything my heart could have desired!!

But it was the visits to LAX that always made my heart race - there was ALWAYS great spotting no matter where you were!!

And on one of those days in the early 1970's (when I was very young), I remember seeing for the first time a Pan Am 747 racing down the runway. I stood in utter disbelief as it slowly lifted its nose and then climbed skyward. I simply could not comprehend how something so large could become airborne. I have never forgotten that moment.

In my readings (prior to deregulation), the story of Pan Am was that of the most elegant and sophisticated airline around - this was THE airline to fly internationally, and they covered the globe. They were, quite simply, the best.

Deregulation hit, and the glory faded...but the name will ALWAYS be equated with the best that air travel had to offer!!



Pan Am:The World's Most Experienced Airline - P(oor) S(ailor's) A(irline): San Diego's Hometown Airline-Catch Our Smile!
User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 25983 posts, RR: 22
Reply 3, posted (7 years 2 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 4779 times:



Quoting PanAm747 (Reply 2):
In my readings (prior to deregulation), the story of Pan Am was that of the most elegant and sophisticated airline around - this was THE airline to fly internationally, and they covered the globe. They were, quite simply, the best.

I flew Pan Am many times, probably around 40 transatlantic flights, and several transpacific and Hawaii trips, plus a few domestic flights after they merged with National. My very first PA flight was on a much shorter route, about 30 minutes from HAM to THF (Berlin Tempelhof) on a 727-100 in 1969 when they operated their Internal German Services in the days when LH wasn't permitted to serve Berlin. My first inflight movie was in early 1970 on a PA 707-320B SEA-LHR. And I clearly recall my first 747 flight on a PA 747-100 LAX-HNL in April 1970, 3 months after PA put the first 747 into service. I also remember a PA 747SP flight HKG-SFO nonstop around 1976 when they were the only nonstop operator between HKG and North America as the 747SP was then the only aircraft with sufficient range.

In my experience, PA was never among the very best international carriers in terms of service quality but they were better than average especially in their earlier days. Their service deteriorated significantly in their last few ears when their financial problems began to mount.

However I always had a sense of history when I flew PA due to their involvement in so many early developments in commercial aviation. And PA pilots in their white hats were very distinctive.


User currently offlineFlagshipAZ From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 3419 posts, RR: 14
Reply 4, posted (7 years 2 weeks 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 4769 times:

Ahh, the immortal Pan American Airways. I remember her well. Pan Am was the world's first truly international airline...a benchmark which others that follow were judged. And to this day, no one airline has really overtaken her reputation as a premier and groundbreaking carrier.
I never had the pleasure of flying on Pan Am, but on one memorable night...I boarded my very first 747 after the type was first introduced in 1970, courtesy of American Airlines. Just before AA's first 747 was to fly, American's personal & their families based LAX were treated to a walk-thru on a brand-new 747. AA had arranged for a PA's 747 to be parked at LAX's terminal 4 for a few hours one night in 1970. My father, who worked for AA for 34 yrs...was invited along with his family to tour the new 747.
So, for this 9 yr old boy back then, it was indeed a night that I shall never forget. My first up-close look at a 747, and going on-board was awe-inspiring. The cabin was HUGE. And at that moment, I was hooked on aviation.
So Pan Am, this grown-up little boy hasn't forgotten about you, nor your wonderful crew, all of your aircraft and exotic routes.
Your legacy will live long in the annals of aviation history. May you live forever.



"Beer is living proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy." --Ben Franklin
User currently offlineOgre727 From UK - England, joined Feb 2005, 725 posts, RR: 2
Reply 5, posted (7 years 2 weeks 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 4746 times:

When I was a little kid, I flew on Pan Am from SFO to MAR and we changed planes in IAH and MIA. Service was exceptionally good, they gave us small paper suitcases (I don't know what to call them) with games in them. Does anyone know what I am talking about?

Service was great. It was my first time on a 727. I loved Pan Am. I miss it. It's funny to realize that all the airlines I took on that trip to SFO are now gone: Avensa (Venezuela), Viasa (Venezuela), Eastern and Pan Am.

Sad indeed.



Sigh
User currently offlineOA260 From Ireland, joined Nov 2006, 27295 posts, RR: 60
Reply 6, posted (7 years 1 week 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 4694 times:

I really miss Pan Am. I used to know a London based F/A who I always used to see when I was a kid. She lived across the road from us and I saw her in her uniform off on another flight. I was always jealous . It was such a sad ending.

User currently offlineDesertAir From Mexico, joined Jan 2006, 1478 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (7 years 1 week 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 4691 times:

My last flight on PanAm was from LAX to GUA on an A-300 about a year before they shut down. From the time I fell in love with commercial aviation during high school, PanAm represented everying I liked about aviation and foreign travel.

User currently offlineAirCop From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (7 years 1 week 6 days 11 hours ago) and read 4667 times:

Pan Am always will hold a special place in my heart..My grandfather was a pilot with them from 1927 to 1963. Got a picture on my wall taken in the late twenties of the entire Pan Am staff standing in front and on the wings of a flying boat taken in Miami. My rides on Pan Am were on the 707 and 747.

User currently offlineSuperfly From Thailand, joined May 2000, 40065 posts, RR: 74
Reply 9, posted (7 years 1 week 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 4654 times:



Quoting PanAm747 (Reply 2):
Deregulation hit, and the glory faded...

I flew them in 1985 and they still had a lot of glory even then but I know it wasn't as great as it was pre-1978.
My Pan Am flight was Los Angeles - New York 747-100.
That flight was rememberable for several reasons. Me and my sister was going to Spain to visit our father. Also, actors Kim Fields and Katey Sagal was on our flight.

Quoting AirCop (Reply 8):
My grandfather was a pilot with them from 1927 to 1963.

WOW!  Wow!
That is totally cool!  Cool
I assume he is no longer around however.
I would have loved to talk about airliners with him. He lived through a spectacular time in aviation. Was he based here in San Francisco?
One of my aunts was a customer service agent for Pan Am back in the 1960s.



Bring back the Concorde
User currently offlineFaustino927 From United States of America, joined Mar 2006, 263 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (7 years 1 week 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 4640 times:

We were trained to be the best and we were. I don't care what anyone says. Pan Am F/A's were aviation royalty, we were know all over the world.


Obsessed is just a word the lazy use to describe the dedicated.
User currently offlineWarren747sp From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 1171 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (7 years 1 week 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 4609 times:

What was the name of their frequent flyer's program? I was a member but can not remember.
I have to agree with the above post that they had the most professionally trained stewardess with an attitude that surpasses others!



747SP
User currently offlineIDISA From Italy, joined Jun 2004, 262 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (7 years 1 week 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 4603 times:

When I was 6 my father gave me, as a Christmas gift, a model of a 747-100 by Pan Am, I think in 1:200 scale. And still when I was a kid my father brought me every Sunday morning to the spotting terrace MXP used to have in the '80s and '90s just to see that big shiny white Jumbo...
Actually it's the first airliner I can remember even if I never had the chance to fly them. But those were days when aviation was a different matter...

Regards
IDISA


User currently offlineQantasA333 From Australia, joined Jan 2007, 538 posts, RR: 4
Reply 13, posted (7 years 1 week 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 4600 times:

Did Pan Am ever fly to Australia? If so, where?

Wasn't even born when Pan Am went broke!  Wow!


User currently offlineRW170 From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 430 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (7 years 1 week 4 days 22 hours ago) and read 4592 times:



Quoting QantasA333 (Reply 13):
Did Pan Am ever fly to Australia? If so, where?

Yes, they flew to Sydney and Melbourne. They also flew to Auckland, New Zealand.



319/320/321/712/733/734/735/73G/738/752/753/763/CR2/CR9/DH8/135/145/170/175/190/D9S/D94/D95/M82/M83/M88
User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 25983 posts, RR: 22
Reply 15, posted (7 years 1 week 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 4571 times:



Quoting RW170 (Reply 14):
Quoting QantasA333 (Reply 13):
Did Pan Am ever fly to Australia? If so, where?

Yes, they flew to Sydney and Melbourne. They also flew to Auckland, New Zealand.

For many years Pan Am was the only US carrier serving the South Pacific. They served a few other points also at various times, including NAN, PPT, PPG. They also had 5th freedom rights between Australia and several points in Asia and for some years in the 1960s/70s they operated between SYD and Hong Kong, Singapore and Jakarta. Those routes ended about the time the 747 replaced the 707 in the early 1970s.


User currently offline767ER From Australia, joined Apr 2001, 1092 posts, RR: 4
Reply 16, posted (7 years 1 week 4 days 10 hours ago) and read 4566 times:

PA were also the first airline to fly non stop ex SYD & AKL with the 747SP. I think they started flying into AKL in the 50s using DC7C.

Sadly when i came of age in the late 70s, PA was a shadow of its former self and was notorious in both Aust and NZ for terriible service - but in those days the benchmark was a lot higher.

I did fly them in 1980 JFK LAX and thought they were just fantastic.

They really were the Royal Family of aviation.



Aircraft flown:F27,Viscount. EMB120, SAAB340, ATR70, 737-200.737-300,DC8, DC10,747-100,747-200,747-300,747-400, A320, A3
User currently offlineAirCop From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (7 years 1 week 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 4520 times:



Quoting Superfly (Reply 9):
That is totally cool! Cool
I assume he is no longer around however.
I would have loved to talk about airliners with him. He lived through a spectacular time in aviation. Was he based here in San Francisco?
One of my aunts was a customer service agent for Pan Am back in the 1960s.

After WWII he was transfered to SFO, last flight landed in SFO in 1963 he never flew again (his wife didn't like to fly). The stories that he would tell about the flying boats days flying to South America, and smuggling goods back from Cuba during the depression, made for some interesting stories.


User currently offlineNWOrientDC10 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 1404 posts, RR: 4
Reply 18, posted (7 years 1 week 2 days 3 hours ago) and read 4491 times:
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Quoting PanAm747 (Reply 2):
I simply could not comprehend how something so large could become airborne.

Sometimes when I see a large aircraft getting off of the ground, I feel the same way.

Quoting FlagshipAZ (Reply 4):
So, for this 9 yr old boy back then, it was indeed a night that I shall never forget. My first up-close look at a 747, and going on-board was awe-inspiring. The cabin was HUGE. And at that moment, I was hooked on aviation.

At age nine in 1975, my first trip on a 747 (Northwest Orient) was unforgettable; the cabin was cavernous.

Quoting FlagshipAZ (Reply 4):
Your legacy will live long in the annals of aviation history. May you live forever.

I have mixed feelings on this. I would love to see Pan American Airways again (Pan Am I) but not in this day and age of air travel.

Quoting Faustino927 (Thread starter):
I was a F/A for the airline



Quoting 747Dreamlifter (Reply 1):
I recall how professional and well dressed the flight attendants were.



Quoting OA260 (Reply 6):
I used to know a London based F/A who I always used to see when I was a kid. She lived across the road from us and I saw her in her uniform off on another flight.

Here's a good bit of reading about Pan American Stewardesses:

http://www.xent.com/pipermail/fork/Week-of-Mon-20031103/026702.html

Richard Branson seems to have a good bit of respect for Juan Trippe:

http://www.charleslindbergh.com/plane/trippe.asp

In all honesty, I was partial to TWA during the 1980's when I did the majority of my travelling. However, due to a financial strain, I was booked on a Pan Am flight via a friend of a friend from whom I was able to obtain a discount fare.(round trip; LAX-JFK-PHL and reverse). This was during the Christmas Season in 1986. I took one more flight in May 1987; LAX-SEA. To sum it up, Pan Am seemed generic at this time (from my experience; compared to WA Transworld Airlines (USA)">TW, NW, and WA) except for one thing - World Port. The Pan Am facilities at LAX seemed generic (not dirty but a bit "plain) but World Port was a different story. It was very much upscale and the facilities there were immaculate (stores, restrooms and other places); very clean.

There is something which stands out about Pan American World Airways; The Beatles arrived here in America aboard the Clipper Defiant (the title of the a/c is quite fitting if I say so, myself) in 1964. I have no good images to present. This is the best I can do, for now:

http://www.beatlelinks.net/images/history/0207-6.jpg

Here's another thing about Pan American World Airways which seems to stand out; only their B 707's have the "Pan American" titles written on the fuselage. The other a/c have "Pan Am" written on them.

Here's a flight schedule from 1973: http://www.departedflights.com/PA042973intro.html



Good day to all  Smile

Russell



Things aren't always as they seem
User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 25983 posts, RR: 22
Reply 19, posted (7 years 1 week 1 day 14 hours ago) and read 4476 times:



Quoting NWOrientDC10 (Reply 18):
Here's another thing about Pan American World Airways which seems to stand out; only their B 707's have the "Pan American" titles written on the fuselage. The other a/c have "Pan Am" written on them.

It wasn't only the 707. When Pan Am's blue globe livery was introduced in 1958 in conjunction with the launch of the first 707 service, the entire PA fleet used the full "Pan American" titles. That changed to "Pan Am" when the 747 was introduced in 1970, and the rest of the fleet was then changed to "Pan Am' over the next year or so. When the 747 first went into service, the only other PA types were the 707 (and a few 720Bs) plus the 727-100. I think their last DC-8 had been retired around that time so it and earlier propeller types only used the full "Pan American" titles.

Following photos all early 1970s, showing the two name variations on PA's 3 other types in service when the 747 was introduced:

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Photo © Peter Seemann
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Photo © Jürgen Lutz



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Photo © George W. Hamlin
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Photo © Willam W. Sierra



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Photo © Peter Seemann
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Photo © Colin Hunter



The other 5 PA types that used the1958 livery but were retired before the change to "Pan Am":

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Photo © Lars Söderström
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Photo © Ralf Manteufel



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Photo © Clive Dyball
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Photo © Ralf Manteufel



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Photo © Bill Armstrong



PA had quite a few livery variations, some fairly minor (e.g. the name in slightly larger font size etc.) during the 1970s/80s before they changed to the large "billboard" titles. They suspended service before their entire fleet made it into that livery


User currently offlineNWOrientDC10 From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 1404 posts, RR: 4
Reply 20, posted (7 years 1 week 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 4465 times:
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Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 19):
It wasn't only the 707. When Pan Am's blue globe livery was introduced in 1958 in conjunction with the launch of the first 707 service, the entire PA fleet used the full "Pan American" titles. That changed to "Pan Am" when the 747 was introduced in 1970, and the rest of the fleet was then changed to "Pan Am' over the next year or so. When the 747 first went into service, the only other PA types were the 707 (and a few 720Bs) plus the 727-100. I think their last DC-8 had been retired around that time so it and earlier propeller types only used the full "Pan American" titles.

Following photos all early 1970s, showing the two name variations on PA's 3 other types in service when the 747 was introduced:

Thanks for the info. I guess I should have checked the photo engine first.

The comments I made were based on my observations when I flew as a UM during the 1970's.

Again, Thanks  Smile

Good Day:

Russell



Things aren't always as they seem
User currently offlineRdy4flt From United States of America, joined Oct 2007, 8 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (7 years 1 week 15 hours ago) and read 4446 times:

I flew Pan Am several times in the late 80's. I really enjoyed their service.

User currently offlinePanAm747 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 4242 posts, RR: 8
Reply 22, posted (7 years 1 week 15 hours ago) and read 4444 times:



Quote:
Did Pan Am ever fly to Australia? If so, where?

Here's a link to a BEAUTIFUL site with lots of old route maps and pictures of a lot of airlines, including Pan Am:

http://www.airchive.com

There are quite a few Pan Am route maps.

Also, Pan Am specifically ordered the 747SP for routes such as LAX-SYD so that a stop in HNL would not be necessary. As late as the 1970's, flying US-Australia required two stops on the "Pacific Kangaroo" route, at HNL and either PPG or PPT. Today the 747-400 can do this job much more economically, but it was Pan Am who pioneered the route.



Pan Am:The World's Most Experienced Airline - P(oor) S(ailor's) A(irline): San Diego's Hometown Airline-Catch Our Smile!
User currently offlineJeffry747 From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 963 posts, RR: 2
Reply 23, posted (7 years 1 week 10 hours ago) and read 4433 times:
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Photo © Frank Schaefer



I have many childhood memories of flying Pan Am from '79-'89. I only ever flew IAH-JFK and back on PA, first on the 707, then the 747, and finally the 727. Loved every last minute of those flights. The one memory that stands out the most for me was on my last Pan Am flight going JFK-IAH back in '89. I was on the 727 I have pictured here, "Clipper Universe". It was an evening flight and I was quite the tired 13 year old going solo on this flight. The F/A asked me how I was doing and I asked if I could have a pillow to rest my head on. This was a full flight so the chances of her finding one were slim. Nonetheless, I was amazed as I watched her search the ENTIRE cabin of the plane to find that pillow. She opened up every overhead bin, every seat, even the galleys and lavatories. I think she even asked a few of the passengers if they were using their pillows. I don't think she ever found one, but I was touched by the fact she looked long and hard just to satisfy one young passenger out of 140. As far as I was concerned she went the extra mile. I will never forget that. You never see service like that on airlines anymore.

Oh yeah, and everytime I flew Pan Am, they served dinner on the flight. DINNER! ON A DOMESTIC FLIGHT! I have not had dinner on a plane since Pan Am went under.



C'mon Big B, FLY!
User currently offlineAY104 From Canada, joined Nov 2005, 505 posts, RR: 6
Reply 24, posted (7 years 1 week 6 hours ago) and read 4427 times:

While it was very sad to see the end of Pan Am, I only flew them once and the service was appalling. It was a JFK-AMS flight in the early 70s, and only about 50 pax on board. The flight attendants had a very arrogant "We're Pan Am, so we don't need to make an effort" attitude, the meal was terrible, and the cabin was a very dingy blue/grey. I remember also, I had seat 29A and I was a couple of rows from the front of Y-class. Apparently their row numbering started from the back, so I guess the last row was number 1.
As I say, for being pioneers of so many aircraft and routes, I was very disappointed. Around that time, I also heard a lot of other people complain about how their service had gone bad. I am genuinely sorry that I have to make such comments about their service, but that is how I found them to be.
Cheers,
AY104



The only thing a customer should expect for his/her loyalty is good service
25 TrijetsRMissed : I think I took a Pan Am 727-200 in '87 ORD-JFK, although it was so long ago I can't remember much about the trip. My dad however took Pan Am several t
26 AY104 : Many people used to think it very prestigious to fly on Pan Am. I remember in the 60s, a guy who worked for my father was taking his family to Hawaii.
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