Berlinflyer From Germany, joined Jan 2005, 94 posts, RR: 0 Reply 1, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 7037 times:
The only foreign route they fly to is Beijing right now. Until the mid 90s they used to fly to Berlin as their only western destination. Berlin has the only north korean embassy in a western capital. The flight was not really bookable, it was only for "their" people. They have a small fleet of mainly IL62 and I think Antonov Aircrafts, passengers and cargo. Befor they were named Air Koryo (Koryo is the ancient name of Korea), they were called Choshonminhang (spelling may be not totally correct).
QuestAir From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 366 posts, RR: 0 Reply 12, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 6717 times:
To answer Christa's question... no, I don't think Air Koryo ever operated any Western a/c. Or at least they don't now. According to the Unofficial Air Koryo Website they operate two AN-24-B's, three AN-24-RVs, three AN-24s, one IL-18-D, one IL-18-V, four IL-62-Ms, two TU-134-B3s, three TU-154-Bs, and one TU-154-B2. The cargo fleet consists of three IL-76s.
Sabena332 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 16, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 6596 times:
...how can a communist airline have separate seating classes???
I asked myself the same but I think it is/was for the "capitalist customers". The former East German Interflug also had different travel classes (as pictured in an old timetable I have), later I found out that many West Germans flew on Interflug because IF served some destinations which Lufthansa didn't serve. By flying Interflug they could travel to their destination on a German airline, with German speaking F/A's, etc. And those who had the money took advantage of the Business Class which gave the airline (or the state who owned the airline) even more money.
Aviasian From Singapore, joined Jan 2001, 1453 posts, RR: 16 Reply 19, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 6392 times:
Air Koryo certainly offers both Business Class (2-2 config) and Economy Class (3-3 Config). I am surprised that the question is asked how a communist airline could have separate seating class - there must have been tonnes of examples where airlines from communist countries have such distinction.
In case we forget, Vietnam (whose flag carrier is very progressive and has now joined the rank of B7E7 airlines) is still communist, and so is China, Russia, Mongolia, Cuba etc.
An Air Koryo IL-62 was in BKK on 29 Dec 2004 - the Pyongyang-Macau-Bangkok service was mostly not operated for many months, so I am not sure if this was indeed a resumption or just an ad-hoc charter. Prior to the suspension, the route was only operated when North Korean workers bound for the Middle East receive their visa approvals.
Flights from Pyongyang to Vladivostok, Khabarovsk, Shenyang and Beijing were deemed to be the main routes (according to Air Koryo officials in Sep 2003). Since the break-up of the Iron Curtain, traffic from communist European countries have evapourated.
My personal experience on Air Koryo (flying Biz class one way and Economy class the other - a conscious choice) was positive. Service wasn't as sophisticated as on other modern Asian airlines, but it certainly wasn't bad at all. Food was merely adequate and while the seats were not embellished with modern gizmos, there were fairly comfortable. The cabin does have a nostalgic feel to it. And the IL-62M was pristinely maintained, both inside and outside.
Aviasian From Singapore, joined Jan 2001, 1453 posts, RR: 16 Reply 22, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 6303 times:
I haven't forgotten, which is why I wonder how a "classless society" can justify having different classes on an airplane?
So do you then also ask how Vietnam Airlines, Air China, China Southern Airlines, China Eastern Airlines, Shanghai Airlines, Aeroflot Russian Airlines, MIAT Mongolian Airlines etc could "justify" having a Business Class cabin on their planes? No agenda here except that if one questions the validity of having business class on an airline from one communist country, one should then also do the same for other airlines from other communist countries (regardless whether they operate Boeings, Airbuses, Tupolevs, Antonovs etc).
On my flight on Air Koryo, I could see that passengers in the biz class cabin were both Koreans and foreigners, Westerners and Easterners.
Afay1 From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 1293 posts, RR: 3 Reply 23, posted (8 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 6303 times:
Ummmmm, the USSR ceased to exist awhile ago...but anyway, it is all about hard currency, which is why they have different classes. Being a communist doesn't automatically mean one isn't a hypocrite as well! Anyway, JS doesn't regularly serve most of the aforementioned destinations as Carpethead has mentioned. Only charters and governmental flights....