Thadocta From Australia, joined Aug 2001, 397 posts, RR: 2
Reply 5, posted (12 years 4 months 2 weeks 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 4312 times:
KLM is the worlds oldest airline, dating from the 1920's (forget the exact year, but since I am drinking free beer in the SYD Qantas Club, I have an excuse! )
Qantas *could* be said to be the worlds oldest CONTINUOUSLY OPERATING airline, IF you consider that KLM ceased RPT operations during WWII. Most aviation enthusiasts (including myself, an unashamed Qantas fanatic) however discount this, as the only reason KLM ceased RPT ops was due to the German occupation of The Netherlands.
So, there are STACKS of carriers out there that are a lot older than 50 years old.
DETA737 From United States of America, joined Oct 2000, 613 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (12 years 4 months 2 weeks 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 4268 times:
Most of the world's major airlines are older than 50 years old. Many airlines were founded after World War II such as Alitalia. Though many have histories that predate the war such as British Airways, KLM, South African Airways, United Airlines. Some airlines began under different names, for instance US Airways was once Allegheny Airlines and later USAir. Singapore Airlines can not claim to be over 50 years except as a successor to Malayan Airways which was founded in 1937 (though did not begin operations until 10 years later due to the war). Malayan Airways then became Malaysian Airways in 1963. When Singapore became independent in 1965, the airline became Malaysia Singapore Airlines, or MSA. Finally in 1971 the joint venture ended with the separation into Malaysia Airlines System (MAS) and Singapore Airlines. So if you want to be technical SIA was officially born in 1972.
Jwenting From Netherlands, joined Apr 2001, 10213 posts, RR: 17
Reply 15, posted (12 years 4 months 2 weeks 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 4131 times:
KLM operated a limited service in the Dutch Caribbean during WW2...
They're the oldest airline that has been constantly operating independently (and under the same name too).
They're also one of the first airlines ever (there were earlier airlines, but none of them still exist as an independent entity if at all).
Petertenthije From Netherlands, joined Jul 2001, 3503 posts, RR: 11
Reply 16, posted (12 years 4 months 2 weeks 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 4121 times:
And not only did they operate in the Caribbean during the war, but also in Europe. They flew London-Madrid mostly hauling newspapers but also some passengers (diplomats, bunsinessmen, military etc). The flight was known as the spy-line.
Sk From Germany, joined Apr 2003, 75 posts, RR: 3
Reply 17, posted (12 years 4 months 2 weeks 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 4116 times:
Lufthansa owes its origins to "Deutsche Luft Hansa Aktiengesellschaft" (renamed "Lufthansa" in 1933), which is formed from a merger between "Deutsche Aero Lloyd" (DAL) and "Junkers Luftverkehr" on January 6 (1926). The new airline inherits its crane logo, designed by "Deutsche Luft-Reederei" in 1919, from DAL, the blue-and-yellow house colours from Junkers.
More information needed?
Trident From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2000, 484 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (12 years 4 months 2 weeks 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 4081 times:
When deciding how old an airline is I think it is incorrect to include "ancestor" airlines. Therefore, British Airways was founded, not in 1919, but in April 1974. BA's pregenitors were AT & T, Hillman Airways, Imperial Airways, the pre-WW2 Britiah Airways, BOAC, BEA, Cambrian Airways, BKS/Northeast Airways, BEA Scottish, BEA Channel Islands, BEA Helicopters - quite a list actually and I'm sure I've left out a few..
It is like saying I was born in 1890, the date of my grandmother's birth.
Aer Lingus was founded in 1936.
Most of the European national airlines were founded pre-WW2. Some, unfortunately, have "gone under" very recently eg. Swiss Air and SABENA.
Flywithken From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 223 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (12 years 4 months 2 weeks 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 4081 times:
To compliment the above post about Alaska Airlines, They just celebrated their 70th anniversary last year. They were started in 1932 with McGee Airways, flying between ANC and Bristol Bay. They merged with Star Airlines in '34. After a few more mergers and name changes they ended up with ALASKA AIRLINES, and that a history of AS in a nutshell!