UAL747 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 6 hours ago) and read 9849 times:
I have always wondered what Ansett was like. I thought the livery (tail) was beautiful, but I know relatively little about the airline. Where did they fly? What happened to them? What aircraft did they have? Where they part of any alliance?
Stratacruiser From United States of America, joined Dec 2011, 89 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 9737 times:
In the regulation era Ansett was one of Australia's two major domestic carriers (along with TAA). Once the Australian government decided to break Qantas's monopoly on intercontinental routes, Ansett began service to several Asian destinations. As I recall they flew 747-300s and 767s internationally. My only direct experience with them was domestic legs SYD - CNS and HTI - SYD in 1995. Their service was simlar to US domestic carriers at the time. My wife flew C class HKG - SYD also in 1995 and found the service adequate but uninspired.
Ansett was a Star Aliance carrier and code-shared with UA among others.
One well-known Ansett anomaly is that they were the only carrier to order 767s with a three-crewmember cockpit to meet terms of their labor agreement. The planes were later modified for two-crewmember operation.
RoseFlyer From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 9511 posts, RR: 52
Reply 3, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 9643 times:
I remember flying Ansett New Zealand on their BAE-146. They had 10 of them to compete with Air New Zealand. It was pretty nice to get a hot dinner of Spaghetti and Meatballs on the 464 mile flight from CHC to AKL.
I remember many preferring them to Air New Zealand, but I am not really sure why. Nowadays it is all about who can offer the lower quality service, charge more for various frills and make it the most difficult to earn and redeem miles. The days of Ansett and Air New Zealand competing before ANZ buying Ansett out were nice.
If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
Ansett Australia (AN) was Australia's 2nd Airline behind QF, Full Service carrier, Star Alliance Member, had a network that went all over Australia, and some international routes like NAN, DPS, HKG, KIX.
Fleet wise, at the time of collapse,
B744 (leased from SQ) B762, B763, B733 and A320 in the 'mainline' fleet
Kendall operated CRJ200's, SAAB 340's and Metroliners
Hazelton operated SAAB 340's and Metroliners
Aeropelican operated DH6
Skywest operated F50's
The only surviving airlines from Ansett Australia are Aeropelican, Kendall and Hazelton (Both of which were merged and renamed REX-Regional Express)
There were several things to the lead up of the collapse;
Competition from Qantas, Impulse and the then New VirginBlue ... but,
The major reason for Ansett Australia's collapse was was Air New Zealand, who was a 50% shareholder, and was under full ownership of AN by 2000.
There are strong indications that asset stripping to raise money from Ansett resources to support Air New Zealand lead to severe cash flow problems. Even fuel bills were being subsidised. The shortcomings in the maintenance of the Boeing 767 fleet (probably due to the cash flow issues) and the grounding of them over the holiday period effectively finished the airline off.
Apart from all this, AN was a fantastic airline, had it been aloud to be bought by SQ, the airline would still be around today, bigger, better and stronger then before!
Fantastic crew, fantastic service! A airline that is sadly missed by all, and still some of my friends are fighting for their entitlements 10years on...
Next Trip: PER-DPS-LOP-CGK-KUL-PVG-LHR, LCY-MAD-VLC, BCN-LYS-TLS-IST-JED-KUL-SGN-CAN-MEL
That depends very much on the time frame you refer to.
Ansett was in essance the consolidation of almost all Australian airlines, done to match the government owned TAA. The mainline carries was Ansett-ANA, later Ansett Airlines. This airline operated DC-4, DC-6B, Vickers Viscounts, L-188 Electra, Fokker F27, B721 & B722, DC-9-30, B737 & B767 and finally A320s. They operated interstate services between SYD, MEL, ADL, HBA, BNE & PER. They also operated to CBR, DRW & other Northern Terrority ports, services across Bass Strait and to various Queensland ports.
As well as the mainline there were subsidary companies in NSW (Ansett Airlines of New South Wales), South Australia (Ansett Airlines of South Australia) and Western Australia (MacRobertson Miller Airlines(MMA)). Early on there was a Queensland Airlines, but that was folded into the mainline in the 1960s. These companies all operated Fokker F27 aircraft, MMA on some very long routes and also had some Viscounts. As well Aof SA operated the last CV-440 in Australia and A of NSW had a subsidary Ansett Flying Boat Services that operated Short S25 Sandringham flying boats until 1974! Plus there was Ansett Mandated Airlines which operated in the Australian external terrority Papua and the UN Trust Terrority of New Guniea (previously the League of Nations Mandated Terrority of New Guniea, hence the name). Ansett-MAL operated F27s and DC-3s (possibably other types) until PNG inderpendance when it was folded into PX.
The last company was Ansett International as referred to Reply 2. I hesitate to call it a subsidary as I don't remember the details of the corporate structure but is was not a fully owned sub because of Murdoch's share holding in the parent company. It was mainly owned by Australian institutional investors.
What were they like to fly on? Technically brillant! A very safe, reliable, well run airline. On board, like most Australian service businesses they had their bad days and their absolutly excellent days, in general they were very good. IMHO the further you got from the main routes the better they were, some of their outback & PNG staff were fabolous and real characters. The gem of course for Anetters was the flying boat service. Read my trip report about that here:
Hope that gives you some idea of one of the worlds truely great airline, just such a pitty it didn't make it into the deregulation era, due to some very shady business dealing after Reg Ansett's death.
1stfl94 From United Kingdom, joined May 2006, 1455 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 9492 times:
Quoting JQflightie (Reply 4): Fleet wise, at the time of collapse,
B744 (leased from SQ) B762, B763, B733 and A320 in the 'mainline' fleet
Given that they were mainly domestic with just a few international routes that seems like a very complicated fleet and I'm not including the regional ops. Were the 747s really needed for the international routes, I would have thought that 777s would have been a better fit
gemuser From Australia, joined Nov 2003, 5621 posts, RR: 6
Reply 8, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 9462 times:
Quoting 1stfl94 (Reply 7): Were the 747s really needed for the international routes, I would have thought that 777s would have been a better fit
B772s were probably considered too small for once daily and less then daily operations and they were not in plentiful supply on the second hand market. The B77W did not exist. The B747 was the only real option.
ClassicLover From Ireland, joined Mar 2004, 4627 posts, RR: 23
Reply 9, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 9393 times:
I remember when I was about 13 (so we're talking somewhere around 1989 or so) I received an Ansett brochure about the brand new A320 aircraft they were bringing into service.
The cabin design theme was the Orient Express. The seats were midnight blue, with snow white protectors for your head that were done out as though they had lace on the edges. It looked exceptionally classy!
As far as I know, Ansett was the choice airline of business people. My father would only fly Ansett as would many of his colleagues - the rich flew Ansett. Of course, anyone did, but they were perceived as the higher class airline compared to TAA (which became Australian Airlines in 1986 before becoming Qantas Domestic in the 1990s).
I flew Ansett twice - Sydney to Coolangatta and return - in late 1993 or early 1994. My only flights on the Boeing 727 (the -277 Advanced).
Even as far back as then, the airline was behind Australian Airlines technologically. They were last to withdraw the DC-9, the last to withdraw the Boeing 727 and so on. Their fleet was schizophrenic - they had loads of different types of aircraft. I remember lots of Fokker 50s, A320s, BAE146s, not to mention the 767s which were the only ones in the world with a flight engineers station. In 1981 they introduced the 737-200, which were disposed when the 737-300s came about in the middle 1980s, followed by A320s straight afterwards... a very strange fleet!
They also bought independent East-West Airlines, and just about everyone. A very strange airline indeed from that perspective...
I do quite enjoy a spot of flying - more so when it's not in Economy!
I flew on an Ansett ticket just one trip, 12th/13th June 1999 from my log, but it was memorable! SYD-CSI-LSY, returning LSY-SYD the next day. Aircraft was a Saab 340 operated by Hazelton (sadly I don't have the regs - any way I could find out?). As I understand it Casino (CSI) was the old local airport and they had a requirement to continue to serve it for some time after most local services moved to Lismore (LSY).
We landed at CSI, which was basically a shed at the end of a strip of tarmac, dropped of a couple of people, and taxied back to the runway. And waited for ten minutes. Then the pilot announced we couldn't take off for Lismore yet because "there's a plane on the runway with a problem, and they're trying to arrange a few guys to push it back to it's parking place". So we went back to the "terminal". Twenty minute later, we departed - after the FA called us back on board by shouting from the top of the boarding stairs.
The FA briefing was short. "Ladies and gentlemen, since nobody new joined this flight here at Casino, I won't repeat the safety instructions I gave when we left Sydney earlier. Our flight time to Lismore this afternoon will be about three minutes. We will not be reaching a cruising altitude on this flight, so please keep your seatbelt fastened." We take off. (She doesn't even bother to put the mic back on it's clip. About thirty second pass.) "Ladies and gentlemen, in a couple of minutes we will be landing at Lismore. I hope you haven't unfastened your seatbelt, and that you enjoyed your flight today with Ansett Australia.".
When we arrived at LSY to meet my cousin, I asked about the disabled aircraft on the runway. Turned out it was a Cessna with a burst tyre, and yes - he'd helped push it off the runway.
I've flown SYD-LSY again since, but on a Jetstar A320. Not nearly as much fun!
Viscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 24906 posts, RR: 22
Reply 12, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 9193 times:
When Ansett was only a domestic carrier, competing with TAA, with virtually identical schedules and equipment on major routes under the government pollicy then in effect, Ansett was generally preferred by those who supported private enterprise, since TAA was government-owned. I think Ansett also had a generally better service reputation than TAA in those days.
It was much like the situation between privately-owned CP Air and then-government-owned Air Canada on domestic routes in Canada during the same period, with CP generally having a better service reputation.
koruman From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 1 hour ago) and read 9116 times:
Quoting JQflightie (Reply 4): There are strong indications that asset stripping to raise money from Ansett resources to support Air New Zealand lead to severe cash flow problems. Even fuel bills were being subsidised
That is just defamatory nonsense.
Air New Zealand had profitable short-haul, long-haul and domestic operations throughout the period of the ill-fated Ansett investment, and while there was plenty of cross-subsidisation it was all in one direction - from the feckless parent (Air NZ) to the idiot child (Ansett).
That is not in any way to absolve Air New Zealand from blame. Far from it.
You need to go back to late 1994 to understand exactly what happened. The Australian and New Zealand governments had agreed to a single aviation market, taking effect from a Monday in October 1994. This was perceived as crucial for Air New Zealand's business plan of becoming a Trans-Tasman carrier with a 24 million market instead of a small NZ niche carrier with a 4 million market.
But there was a problem. Ansett was a basket-case with an absurdly diversified fleet and industrial chaos - but a large workforce. The Keating (Labor) government in Australia was already in deep electoral trouble, and did not want Ansett exposed.
So at 530pm Australian time on the Friday before the new Single Market was to become valid - which was already 730pm New Zealand time - the Australian transport minister sent a fax to his NZ colleague Maurice Williamson in which he told him that Australia was abrogating the agreement. That fax was discovered, from memory, at the end of the weekend.
From that point on, the New Zealand government, and the board of Air New Zealand followed a path of commercial suicide. Air New Zealand had intended to obtain domestic feed in Australia for services from Sydney to North America and from Brisbane to Asia. That swiftly fell apart - their 747 fleet was too big for those markets without domestic feed.
Air New Zealand ended up doing precisely what the Keating government wanted - they bought Ansett. The acquisition of the first half was fairly uncontroversial, but Singapore Airlines wanted the second half and when NZ exercised their right of first refusal, Singapore Airlines bought a significant stake in Air New Zealand in order to indirectly achieve that.
But Air NZ ran Ansett badly. The corporate side of things was a disaster, with longserving managers eased out and replaced by people who had no corporate relationships in Australia. Air NZ were incompetent in terms of how they managed Ansett, but the stories of missing engines and siphoned-off fuel were utterly rebutted by Ansett's liquidators.
Then, in 2000-2001, SIA and NZ allowed themselves to be utterly outflanked by Qantas. Ansett was haemorrhaging money, and Air New Zealand did not have deep enough pockets to replace the antique fleet and pay the high costs. SQ and NZ agreed that SQ could increase its stake in NZ up to 49%, but this required a change in New Zealand law to allow that. The government dithered, while Qantas launched a successful lobbying campaign on both sides of the Tasman, arguing that the "behemoth" this would create would drive it out of business.
The NZ government hesitated and hesitated......and then 9/11 happened. The whole world of aviation changed. Ansett collapsed before the NZ government could make a decision, and Qantas got ten years of an effective monopoly in Australia.
So this is the story of a basketcase airline (Ansett), an unscrupulous government (Keating's Labor), a weak and out-of-its-depth government (Bolger's Nationals in NZ), a foolish, undercapitalised and mismanaged airline (Air New Zealand) and an airline with deep pockets but no commonsense whatsoever (Singapore Airlines). And it's the story of how they were all outwitted and outflanked by an airline with ruthless and utterly unscrupulous management - Qantas.
That is incorrect. While I agree that Ansett's fleet was dire, I must correct you about the DC-9s. Ansett withdrew their DC-9s in favour of 737-200s from late 1981 and they were gone within a year. TAA decided to upgrade their DC-9's both in terms of cabin amenity and performance-wise. Around half left the fleet in 1986-87 (on arrival of the 733s). The pilot's strike in 1989 saw the 'premature' demise of the remaining TN DC-9 fleet. There was much talk of using them in a single class configuration on leisure routes after deregulation.
AngMoh From Singapore, joined Nov 2011, 479 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days ago) and read 8943 times:
Quoting aerokiwi (Reply 14): Yup again. Mistakes on all sides. The New Zealand Government preventing SQ raising its stake in NZ was also a contributing factor. Muchael Cullen has a lot to answer for (this, TranzRail).
A full story on the last few days of Ansett is here, it is a good read
I just threw away my old Ansett frequent flyer card (no status whatsoever). I used to fly them between 1990 and 1995 as their A320s where much more spacious / had more comfortable seats than the Australian Airlines / Qantas 737s. My first flight on a A320 was actually on Ansett and if I remember it correctly it was from ADL to SYD.
planeguy727 From United States of America, joined Mar 2007, 1240 posts, RR: 1
Reply 19, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 8693 times:
I flew them twice...
my domestic segments when I moved to Australia (SYD-ADL-ASP, Aug 1982) and when I left (route reversed, Aug 1984) both on 722s.
I loved walking across the tarmac at ASP and using the rear airstairs to board. The flight crew was always fantastic - though that may have been because I was 10-12 yrs old and in love with commercial planes. I remember visiting the flight deck on the ADL-ASP segment, so cool. I still have the plastic wings they gave me on each flight.
Somewhere in my files I have the promo material they put out with the pending arrival of the new 767s. I also remember the beginning of the transition to the new livery (white with southern cross). I liked the red and white with the A - reminded me of the Delta widget I knew from ATL, FRA, MLB and PBI.
vhqpa From Germany, joined Jul 2005, 1456 posts, RR: 1
Reply 21, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 15 hours ago) and read 8386 times:
I can clearly remember flying them DRW-ADL Boxing Day 1994. I was six years old and I was going on my first solo flight down to Adelaide to visit family. I can remember my parents giving me the option of Ansett or Qantas and I made my decision solely on aircraft type as I knew Ansett sent 727's where Qantas was 737's. The flight was on 727-200LR VH-ANA the seats and carpet were blue and there was blue and gold parallel stripes along either side of the aisle. The economy meal was roast chicken with gravy and peas. I was also invited to the flight deck to visit the crew. On arrival at ADL I remember marvelling the the size of the 727 as I disembarked from the real ventral stairs. The return flight was on a 737-300 I don't remember much of that flight except it was in the old deregualtion flag livery where the 727 on the flight down was in the brand new Starmark livery. The interior was a grey/blue combination, the inflight movie was about a seal called "Andre" and as I boarded I asked the hostess (they were still called that then)"Is this plane a 737-300" and she seemed amazed by my question. That was pretty much my only memories of them after that I didn't fly again until July 2004.
TN486 From Australia, joined Jul 2008, 916 posts, RR: 2
Reply 22, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 8268 times:
Quoting UAL747 (Thread starter): I have always wondered what Ansett was like. I thought the livery (tail) was beautiful, but I know relatively little about the airline. Where did they fly? What happened to them? What aircraft did they have? Where they part of any alliance?
Hullo there, can I refer you to two well researched books relating to AN. Detail is as follows:
ANSETT. The story of the rise and fall of Ansett 1936-2002. By Stewart Wilson. Published by Aerospace Publications Pty Ltd, PO Box 1777 Fyshwick ACT 2609 Australia. Website. www.ausaviation.com.au (They publish the monthly Australian Aviation magazine).
Ansett. The collapse by Geoff Easdown and Peter Wilms. Published by Thomas c Lothian Pty Ltd. website. www.lothian.com.au
I commend both publications to you.
[Edited 2011-12-09 03:04:07]
[Edited 2011-12-09 03:05:11]
remember the t shirt "I own an airline"on the front - "qantas" on the back
tayser From Australia, joined Mar 2008, 1125 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 8138 times:
Random MEL trivia:
AN was famous in MEL for its founder/CEO/whatever for flying his helicopter everyday from his house in Portsea (bottom of the Mornington Peninsula / Port Phillip Bay) to the roof of 501 Swanston Street - AN's HQ (about 70-80km point to point straight up the middle of the bay). Since then, helicopters have not been able to land on the top of CBD buildings.
80 Collins St - aka Nauru House had a helipad on the top as it was the tallest at the time up the East End (the spires of 101 and 120 Collins St now are much taller and would be an obstacle to landing a chopper on top of 80 Collins). The helipad is still, in effect, there but with a renovation in the early 2000's the owner of the building built a new LMR (Lift Motor Room) on top of the building which has taken up half of the old helipad.
Nowadays choppers landing in the city are only permitted to approach the city along the Yarra from the east or west (to my knowledge / through many years of observation) and land at the floating helipad on the north bank of the Yarra in Enterprize park (just east of Spencer Street bridge).
anyhow, I flew them once MEL-CBR-MEL back in 1998 - the first flight I had been on since I was 2 (1984) when my family lived in the UK for a year. Was a 320 IIRC - the flight was free so it was good anyhow