Sponsor Message:
Civil Aviation Forum
My Starred Topics | Profile | New Topic | Forum Index | Help | Search 
Eastern Airlines: Biggest In Their Day?  
User currently offlineDIA From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 3273 posts, RR: 27
Posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 5533 times:

Loving Eastern Airlines and its history, I'd still like to know if they were ever the largest airline on the east coast in terms of pax #s, or even a/c #s.

Their hubs were MIA, LGA, ATL, am I missing any? Was JFK one?
Which of their hubs were they the dominant carrier at?

Just brushing up on EAL history. . .

Thanks ahead of time. . .

Edit: title

[Edited 2005-06-29 18:44:00]


Ding! You are now free to keep supporting Frontier.
51 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineGr8SlvrFlt From United States of America, joined Jan 2002, 1606 posts, RR: 10
Reply 1, posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 5510 times:

For a time in the 70s and 80s Eastern boarded more passengers a year than any airline "in the free world." Only Aeroflot carried more. However, Eastern's average stage length was quite low so they never had the greatest RPMs.

Eastern also had hubs as PHL, CLT, MCI, IAH and SJU, though not all at once.

Eastern was the first large American carrier to post a profit and was consistently the most profitable airline from the 30s to the 50s.


User currently offlineBigGSFO From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 2924 posts, RR: 6
Reply 2, posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 5498 times:

I believe EA also tried a hub in Houston.

User currently offlineWayfarer From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 5460 times:

I think that year 1983, 1984, & 1985 were Eastern's biggest years ... before Texas Air buyout.

Eastern used to have "mini-hubs" at STL. Not sure about DCA - maybe just a huge base.


User currently offlineCitationJet From United States of America, joined Mar 2003, 2438 posts, RR: 3
Reply 4, posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 5438 times:

Here is a link to some Eastern timetables and route maps. They may help you to understand their route structure.

http://www.airchive.com/SITE%20PAGES/TIMETABLES-EASTERN.html

.



Boeing Flown: 701,702,703;717;720;721,722;731,732,733,734,735,737,738,739;741,742,743,744,747SP;752,753;762,763;772,773.
User currently offlineWayfarer From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 5425 times:

Let me add this to the link's timetable .. March 4, 1989 -- strike crippled Eastern's operations.

User currently offline727LOVER From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 6436 posts, RR: 17
Reply 6, posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 5352 times:

That website doesn't even get the shutdown date correct!! January 18th, not 16th, 1991

You have to remember, back in the 60s and 70s and early 80s, airlines really didn't have HUBS, more like large bases of operations. I think EA's only true hubs were ATL, MCI, PHL, IAH, but they had large bases at LGA, EWR, BOS, JFK, DCA, ORD, STL, CLT, TPA, MCO, MIA, FLL, SJU



Listen Betty, don't start up with your 'White Zone' s*** again.
User currently offlineIsitsafenow From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 4984 posts, RR: 23
Reply 7, posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 5279 times:

1985 and 1986, Eastern boarded more passengers than any other carrier except AeroFlot. Feb 1991 they were no more....,.I think that is a powerful statement to anyone who thinks their company, airline or not, is invincible.
safe



If two people agree on EVERYTHING, then one isn't necessary.
User currently offlineA300AA From United States of America, joined Sep 2004, 394 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 16 hours ago) and read 5230 times:

Also they had INTL F/A crew bases in BOG, LIM, and EZE.

Nice memories....


User currently offlinePsa53 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 3069 posts, RR: 4
Reply 9, posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 16 hours ago) and read 5215 times:

Yes.I was sadden when I heard of the Eastern shutdown.
But I wasn't shocked because of the Frank Borman Vs. labor
troubles, which was in many cases, front page news.
Great carrier.Truly missed.



Tuesday's Off! Do not disturb.
User currently offlineWayfarer From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 16 hours ago) and read 5170 times:

Quoting Psa53 (Reply 9):
Yes.I was sadden when I heard of the Eastern shutdown.

Yes.. everyone was shocked. That was on Friday night. The next day, USAToday newspaper - they do not publish Saturday and Sunday editions - but they did Saturday edition after EA's shutdown on Friday night ..

Headline read this:

Eastern Airlines calls it quits


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Don Boyd
View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Don Boyd



User currently offlineDutchjet From Netherlands, joined Oct 2000, 7864 posts, RR: 57
Reply 11, posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 5105 times:

Quoting DIA (Thread starter):


Their hubs were MIA, LGA, ATL, am I missing any? Was JFK one?
Which of their hubs were they the dominant carrier at?

[Edited 2005-06-29 18:44:00]

As pointed out, airservice back in the 70s and 80s was more point to point oriented, and less about hubs, but Eastern did have some rather impressive operations at the following cities....

ATL was a major hub for EA.

Eastern also had a major focus city at CLT, connections were available at CLT for cities such as CHS, SAV, JAX, CAE and others in the Carolinas.

PHL was also a focus city, Eastern moved passengers from Montreal, Toronto and upstate NY cities via PHL to destinations in Florida and the Southeast.

Large operations at LGA, JFK and EWR (including of course the BOS-LGA-DCA shuttle).

Eastern was a major player at all FLorida airports: MCO (EA was the first official airline of Walt Disney World), PBI, FLL and MIA were very big stations....MIA took on even more importance after EA acquired South American route authorities from Braniff.

Major stations at MSY and IAH with primarily east coast destinations; however, at a certain point, EA did open up routes from IAH to the west coast.

And, when Eastern looked westward (at this point the airline was already in trouble), Eastern established a hub at Kansas City to move pax from east to west and west to east.....it was not a very compreshensive hub, it focused on connection major east and west coast cities and was not very successful.

Finally, dont forget that EA had a huge operation at SJU, flying from mainly east coast US cities including Miami to SJU.

I have great memories of flying Eastern.


User currently offlineKkfla737 From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 1033 posts, RR: 1
Reply 12, posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 5097 times:

Eastern was the free world's largest airline from about 1982 thru 1985. At the time EA had true hubs only in ATL and MIA with smaller hub like operations at MCI, CLT and IAH. SJU, LGA, EWR, PHL, DCA, TPA, MCO, and FLL were very large focus cities dependent mostly on O&D traffic. In 1986 and 1987 a late night connecting hub was attempted at O'Hare but the weather delays took its toll on the operation.

Eastern's demise though long in the making was pretty rapid. As late as 1987 Eastern was still as large if not larger than Delta. By March 1989 the airline had stopped flying entirely because of a strike, and the airline though reconstituted with Frank Lorenzo's strike breakers employed never came close to regaining its former size of pre March 1989. Lorenzo actually believed he could bring Eastern back to nearly full size and blundered badly. Instead of selling assets quickly and regaining some capitol he attempted to rebuild the airline quickly and brought back many of the structural defects in EA's route system. By the time Lorenzo was stripped of contol by the bankrupcy court in 1990 EA was sure to die.


User currently offlineKkfla737 From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 1033 posts, RR: 1
Reply 13, posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 5012 times:

I should also point out that EA's true hub at miami really began when Ea absorbed Braniff's Latin American division in 1982. Prior to that Miami was simply a huge focus city, while serving as a hub for Pan Am who actually had less dailies than EA, but far more connecting opportunities.

User currently offlineTimz From United States of America, joined exactly 15 years ago today! , 6835 posts, RR: 6
Reply 14, posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 4950 times:

"Eastern was the free world's largest airline from about 1982 thru 1985."

As measured by boardings?


User currently offlineBigGSFO From United States of America, joined Jun 2005, 2924 posts, RR: 6
Reply 15, posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 4768 times:

I loved flying Eastern however my last Eastern flight was terrible. It was MIA-LAX on an L10 circa 1989. The interior was dirty, showing wear, ripped fabric on the seats, and there were cockroaches scurrying about. At that point I knew they were no longer the Eastern Airlines I once knew and loved.

User currently offlineCairo From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 16, posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 4757 times:

I have to say that part of what EA and the other legacies were doing in the 70s is part of the explanation as to why the legacies aren't doing well right now. No one particularly wants to change planes in DFW, ORD or ATL, point to point service is more desirable.

From IAH in the 70s I used to take EA L-1011s and A300s to JFK and back again and the meal was almost always 'steak or lobster?'---in coach. EA served several cities in Texas from IAH nonostop, like ELP, SAT, CRP, and others, as well as flying to its traditional home markets in New York and the eastern seaboard. In those days airlines served routes where [they at least thought] passengers wanted to fly, not everything had to go through a hub.

EA lost out to superior revenue management and the hub philosophy that took hold in the late 80s, and, ironically, may again be on its decline.

Cairo


User currently offlineStirling From Italy, joined Jun 2004, 3943 posts, RR: 21
Reply 17, posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 4795 times:

A stroll through selected Eastern years...starting with:

1972
Total Daily Flights=1508

1982
Total Daily Flights=1423

1987
Total Daily Flights=1459

1989
Total Daily Flights=387

*************************************

1972
TOP TEN/DAILY FLIGHTS
ATL-220
MIA-130
LGA-77
DCA-71
EWR-63
BOS-60
CLT-50
TPA-47
PHL-43
FLL-37(TIE)
JFK-37 (TIE)

1982
TOP TEN/DAILY FLIGHTS
ATL-284
MIA-101
LGA-65
CLT-56
TPA-54
DCA-50
MCO-45
JFK-42
BOS-41
IAH-35

1987
TOP TEN/DAILY FLIGHTS
ATL-332
MIA-112
LGA-77
MCI-61
DCA-57(TIE)
BOS-57(TIE)
PHL-51
TPA-46
MCO-42
FLL-32
EWR-28

1989
TOP TEN(8)/DAILY FLIGHTS
ATL-163
MIA-26
LGA-16
MCO-8
DCA-5(TIE)
TPA-5(TIE)
EWR-5(TIE)
16 CITIES WITH 4 DAILIES:
BOS,PHL,FLL,SJU,JAX,PBI,ORD,RDU,GSP,SAV,MSY,PNS,BNA,CLT,YUL,BUF,BHM
19 CITIES WITH 3 DAILIES:
DTW,LAX,PIT,BWI,SRQ,BDL,CHS,CLE,FMY,ORF,IND,STL,TLH,MLB,CMH,DAB,MOB,HSV,GNV
9 CITIES WITH 2 DAILIES:
YYZ,SEA,SFO,PVD,DEN,MKE,ALB,PTY,LIM



Delete this User
User currently offlineDB777 From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 885 posts, RR: 43
Reply 18, posted (9 years 2 months 3 weeks 5 hours ago) and read 4669 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Quoting Stirling (Reply 17):
1972
TOP TEN/DAILY FLIGHTS
ATL-220
MIA-130

That number for MIA seems high as hell. I presume that it included code-share flights on Naples Airlines/PBA?



Photographing aircraft since the Earth was flat and on Airliners.net since #338
User currently offlineStirling From Italy, joined Jun 2004, 3943 posts, RR: 21
Reply 19, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 4581 times:

Quoting DB777 (Reply 18):
That number for MIA seems high as hell. I presume that it included code-share flights on Naples Airlines/PBA?

Nope. Those are all Mainline. I will provide a breakdown later.



Delete this User
User currently offlineWayfarer From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 20, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 4539 times:

Quoting Stirling (Reply 17):
1987
Total Daily Flights=1459

1989
Total Daily Flights=387

given above figures ... that's a reduction of 1,072 daily flights between 1987 & 1989 ... The worst downsizing I've ever see


User currently offlineNASCARAirforce From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3178 posts, RR: 4
Reply 21, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 4524 times:

The 1989 number for MIA seems low as hell. I could swear I remember seeing a lot of Eastern operations when I was at MIA in 1990.

I remember flying on Eastern in 1986, when they were still the official airline of Disney. I flew DTW-ATL on a 727, then ATL-MCO on another 727, then MCO-ATL on a 727, ATL-DTW on a DC-9.

i recall the planes being kind of dirty and worn down back then. The food was terrible on the leg between DTW-ATL both ways (between MCO-ATL was just peanuts) , but that was back in the days when you still got food.

I recall seeing a lot of Eastern widebodies at MCO in 1986. I recall seeing both L1011s and A300s around MCO and wondering where they came from (being that I just came from ATL on a 727).

Does anyone remember the Eastern ride at the Magic Kingdom? It was in Tomorrowland I believe, near where Space Mountain is. I think they replaced the ride with that interactive ride that is there now- i forgot what movie it was based on, but its similar to the Men in Black ride at Universal where you have to shoot at aliens/monsters or something.


User currently offlineAirScoot From United States of America, joined May 2005, 688 posts, RR: 2
Reply 22, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 4472 times:

Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 21):
Does anyone remember the Eastern ride at the Magic Kingdom? It was in Tomorrowland I believe, near where Space Mountain is. I think they replaced the ride with that interactive ride that is there now- i forgot what movie it was based on, but its similar to the Men in Black ride at Universal where you have to shoot at aliens/monsters or something.

The name of the ride was "If You Had Wings" and it was near the entrance to the Carousel of Progress (sponsored by GE). Delta took the ride over briefly when they took over the "official airline" status from Eastern and called it "DreamFlight". Both carriers had a representative ready to take reservations from riders at unload. When I worked at Disney in the early 90's there was some discussion as to what they were going to do with the space after Delta left.


User currently offlineKkfla737 From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 1033 posts, RR: 1
Reply 23, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 4457 times:

Quoting NASCARAirforce (Reply 21):
The 1989 number for MIA seems low as hell. I could swear I remember seeing a lot of Eastern operations when I was at MIA in 1990.

Yes, I believe that the list for 1989 quoted above is from early in the strikebefore Eastern built back their operations. I'll find a later timetable from 1989 (perhaps December) and list the flights.


User currently offlineDB777 From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 885 posts, RR: 43
Reply 24, posted (9 years 2 months 2 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 4452 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Quoting Stirling (Reply 19):
Quoting DB777 (Reply 18):
That number for MIA seems high as hell. I presume that it included code-share flights on Naples Airlines/PBA?

Nope. Those are all Mainline. I will provide a breakdown later.

I'd love to see it because in 1972 the E-Satellite wasn't open yet and EA had considerably fewer gates to use on half of Concourse B (the newer half was built in the late 70's/early 80's), C and half of old D. After BN went bust in the early 80's EA started South American/Central American service on former BN routes and still their daily flights were only in the low 100's with a lot more gates to use on the new half of B, new-D and the E-Satellite. I just can't imagine EA doing fast turns on the limited number of gates that were available in 1972.


Don



Photographing aircraft since the Earth was flat and on Airliners.net since #338
25 Kkfla737 : Prior to deregulation Ea flew several point to point flights from MIA and FLL to cities such as Greensboro, Birminghma and Buffalo that were not serve
26 Stirling : Eastern Airlines September 1972 Miami. ATL-11 BWI-4 BHM-1 BOS-4 BUF-2 CLT-1 ORD-6 CLE-1 CMH-1 DAL-2 DAB-2 DTW-3 FPO-4 GNV-1 BDL-3 IND-1 JAX-1 MLB-2 MK
27 DB777 : I'm well aware of EA's point-to-point service prior to deregulation but it just doesn't compute gate-wise at MIA for 130 daily flights based on the ga
28 Wayfarer : "LCC Eastern" those 1972 days
29 Post contains images Stirling : I don't know what to say then....the information posted comes straight from the publicly distributed timetable from Sept 6, 1972. Sa, SaSu Only fligh
30 Kkfla737 : The January 1, 1990 timetable had a total of 266 flights a day from Atlanta and 78 flights a day from Miami. That I believe was the high point in the
31 Flightopsguy : The ride space at Disneyworld is now the Buzz Lightyear ride, where you use laser guns to shoot the bad guys. It's a great ride, and the younger kids
32 MAH4546 : I loved that ride so much. The Buzz Lightyear ride still sits on the same exact ride system that the Eastern ride did. After Eastern and Disney ended
33 DB777 : Thank you for the breakdown, which I didn't see until after my last post. I'm amazed at those numbers because they only had about 20-22 gates to do th
34 Mikey711MN : In an episode of The Simpsons, they visit Orlando's "EFCOT Center" and actually ride on it! The Eastern Airlines reference and all!!! -Mike
35 Doug : Eastern Airlines highest total of MIA mainline daily departures was between 110-115(1987-1988) Atlanta had 309(1989 or 1990) daily departures.Miami ne
36 Kkfla737 : Interesting. EA was a largely point to point carrier pre-strike with the exception of the large Atlanta and Miami hubs. It is still amazing to me eve
37 Wayfarer : true ... I wonder why Eastern was based in Miami (Headquarters office located at Building 9 -- on MIA property), not Atlanta ...
38 DB777 : Correct me if I'm wrong but wasn't New York (Rockefeller Building) the site of Eastern's HQ's for the vast majority of their existance? I thought they
39 NW727251ADV : I remember that episode!!! I never knew that skit was based on a real ride at Disney. It was funny because the ride was supposed to represent like 50
40 Mikey711MN : Not in the episode, it isn't. The parody location was specifically EFCOT...the font and all was entirely verbatim to the actual EPCOT. Very very funn
41 Stirling : You are not. EASTERN AIRLINES Eastern Airlines Building 10 Rockefeller Plaza New York, NY, 10020 The address above taken from the back page of the 19
42 DB777 : Sounds to me like you've really done your research, thanks. It still boggles my mind that they had that many flights with so few gates at MIA in 1972,
43 WDBRR : I worked for Eastern and really miss them. I once saw a movie made in the mid 80's that showed a large part of the operations. I think even a baggage
44 Wayfarer : a movie about Eastern Flight 401 that crash landed in the Everglades?
45 WDBRR : Sorry...it wasn't a crash movie, it was more a comedy. The movie was kind of funny and almost gloried EAL.
46 727LOVER : In the movie Cadillac Man, there was a derogatory reference to Eastern. Wonder why the movie studio wasn't sued.
47 Stirling : Sounds like "Ernest Saves Christmas"
48 Post contains images Wingspan : Maybe this is a good time to pull on the memories of EAL afficionados: What was the last flight to touchdown when EAL went under on January 18, and if
49 WDBRR : Did read a while ago that the last EA flight was LGA-ATL. You may want to check the archives for the Atlanta Journal Consitution newpaper for that dat
50 Post contains images Ikramerica : Miami is warm. In the 1970s, people still were perfectly happy to board planes via stairs in warm climates. Heck, they still do it in vacation spots
51 DB777 : I was still familiar with MIA's layout in 1972 even though I started two years later. There were no remote pads west of C and D back then and east of
Top Of Page
Forum Index

This topic is archived and can not be replied to any more.

Printer friendly format

Similar topics:More similar topics...
Eastern Airlines Gates In MIA? posted Mon Sep 11 2006 20:26:20 by MIAUA777
Eastern Airlines 747 In 1981? posted Fri Feb 25 2005 16:44:09 by Ogre727
Eastern Airlines Featured In Simpsons Episode posted Mon Jan 6 2003 02:42:52 by BR715-A1-30
Airlines With 2-4-3 In Their 747- Y-Class? posted Wed Nov 22 2000 19:21:32 by CNS
1985 Crash Of Eastern Airlines In La Paz, Bolivia posted Mon Aug 21 2006 02:46:04 by Jamake1
Eastern Airlines In Philadelphia posted Thu Apr 1 2004 21:56:03 by 7E72004
Why No Middle Eastern Airlines In An Alliance? posted Wed Sep 3 2003 12:41:19 by Mozart
Eastern Airlines Ionosphere Room Still In Use posted Sun Aug 4 2002 05:05:52 by MSYtristar
Jetsgo Flies 1,200 Pax In Their First Day Of Ops! posted Thu Jun 13 2002 04:40:09 by Slawko
Airlines With 3 Or More Colours In Their Livery posted Wed Mar 20 2002 16:37:18 by GF-A330