DJMEL From Australia, joined Oct 2008, 138 posts, RR: 0 Posted (5 years 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 15410 times:
I see on a seperate thread that Avianca celebrates its 89th Birthday this week, which was a complete surprise to me as I did not realise that they had been operating that long - Congratulations to them!
I then began to wonder who is the oldest operating Airline today - as I was always of the belief that KLM was the oldest operating Airline.
You can also break it down into Region:
-English Speaking Airline
Please do not include Airlines that no longer operate, however if they have merged with another carrier please advise all details.
I would be very interested to see what you all come up with.
Acey559 From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 1447 posts, RR: 2 Reply 1, posted (5 years 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 15406 times:
OP (Chalk's International Airlines, formerly Chalk's Ocean Airways) was formed way back in 1917. Recently though, it went through a sort of restructuring after the crash of one of its Turbo Mallards, so I don't know if you can technically count it since the airline was renamed, although mostly the same airline.
ERJ135 From Australia, joined Nov 2000, 676 posts, RR: 1 Reply 2, posted (5 years 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 15317 times:
A loaded question that has a lot of different answers depending on how you look at things.
Chalks as mentioned above was indeed the first airline in the world, however it does not boast the longest continuous service and of course since restructure it now operates under another name.
KLM 2nd oldest airline or is it? The assets were bought by an Air France led consortium May 5th 2004 and incorporated on that day. The history dates back to October 1919 but the entity we see today is not even 5 years old.
Avianca as stated above is celebrating 89 years, however 89 years ago there was no airline called Avianca, that name came later.
Qantas November 1920 and still Qantas 2008, hmmmmmmm your call!
Sabena goes back to the 20's too if I remember but as you said not valid as it is no longer in operation and SN brussels is not Sabena.
HAL From United States of America, joined Jan 2002, 2499 posts, RR: 53 Reply 3, posted (5 years 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 15167 times:
For the United States;
The original version of Delta Airlines began flying in May of 1924, but was a crop dusting service at first. They began passenger service in 1928, but suspended that in 1930. They restarted passenger service in August of 1934.
United began flying in April of 1926 as an airmail airline, Varney Airlines. They began carrying passengers in 1930.
Northwest started in September of 1926, just a few months after the start of United. They began carrying passengers earlier than any of the others though, in 1927.
And finally Hawaiian Airlines began flying mail and passengers at the same time, November of 1929. HA is the only one of the group to have flown continuously as a passenger airline, and is the only one of them that hasn't merged with another airline along the way.
One smooth landing is skill. Two in a row is luck. Three in a row and someone is lying.
TheSonntag From Germany, joined Jun 2005, 3379 posts, RR: 30 Reply 5, posted (5 years 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 15064 times:
Lufthansa is not part of the oldest airlines, as it was founded again in the early 1950s. The old LH was disbanded after the war by the allies, LH bought the name. However, the tradition of LH dates back to the early 20s, so it is not the oldest, but it is quite old nevertheless.
MayaviaERJ190 From Mexico, joined Jan 2008, 277 posts, RR: 2 Reply 10, posted (5 years 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 14726 times:
Mexicana has had the same brand for 87+ years. It has been its parent companies that have changed name: Compañía Mexicana de Transportación Aérea, Compañía Mexicana de Aviación, Pan American World Airways, Corporación Mexicana de Aviación, Grupo Falcón, Compañía Mexicana de Aviación (again), CINTRA, Grupo Mexicana, etc. Very few have gone under the same brand since they began operations.
Not only has it had its one and only brand for 87+ years, but it has provided uninterrupted service since, something that few others can brag about since many wars and events have interrupted their service.
Mexicana, the first foreign airline to serve LAX, has recently celebrated 70 years of uninterrupted LAX service under the same brand.
Other than the Chalk's seaplane Florida-Bahamas airbridge there is nothing comparable to Mexicana in North America.
And for the rest of the Americas I challenge any other living airline to have:
1.-87+ years of uninterrupted service.
2.-87+ years of uninterrupted service in its inaugural route (MEX-TAM)
3.-87+ years of operations under the same brand. (The Avianca brand is 68+ years old)
4.-78+ years of international service.
5.-72+ years of uninterrupted service to/from LAX.
6.-48+ years of jet service.
7.-Full continental coverage with its own metal from Canada to Argentina.
Any other one can be the oldest, but this makes Mexicana the first!
HAL From United States of America, joined Jan 2002, 2499 posts, RR: 53 Reply 20, posted (5 years 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 14150 times:
Quoting JEdward (Reply 14): UA was tied to Varney? I had always thought Varney was the predecessor of CO before Six took over and changed the name.
Yes, the original Varney Air Lines was the oldest of the carriers that merged to form United. The others were National Air Transport, Pacific Air Transport, and Boeing Air Transport. The four of them formed the core of the new United Airlines.
Captaink From Mexico, joined May 2001, 5108 posts, RR: 12 Reply 22, posted (5 years 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 14063 times:
The three oldest airlines in the world under the same brand, are KLM, Qantas and Mexicana. Mexicana being the 3rd, KLM and Qantas fighting over the first two positions. In the Americas, Mexicana is the oldest airline.