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1970s Malaysian Flights To Europe  
User currently offlinemusang From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2001, 920 posts, RR: 6
Posted (3 years 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 4607 times:

When MAS started flights to Europe in the early '70s, can anyone tell me the routings? They all tech-stopped in the Middle East, but I've read an account that the KUL - LHR tech stop was the only stop, surely an unusual tactic in those days.

Many thanks - musang

7 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlinejfk777 From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 9299 posts, RR: 6
Reply 1, posted (3 years 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 4446 times:
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MAS used DC-10-30 in those days but have no cluw where they stopped. Bahrain was very popular at the time.

User currently online9MMPD From Australia, joined Oct 2005, 299 posts, RR: 1
Reply 2, posted (3 years 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 4422 times:

I think there was a CDG - LHR sector

User currently offlineMAS777 From United Kingdom, joined Jul 1999, 2939 posts, RR: 6
Reply 3, posted (3 years 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 4166 times:

Malaysian Airlines System actually operated the 707 and DC10-30s to Europe until the arrival of the 747-200Bs in 1982.

Flights generally operated via Kuwait with one of the flights operating via Dubai.
Indeed most flights (if not all) bound for London made an additional stop at Amsterdam, Frankfurt or Paris enroute to Heathrow.

Flight numbers were MH1/2/3/4/5/6 (depending on the stopover city in Europe - AMS being MH1/2, FRA being MH3/4 and CDG being MH5/6) if memory serves me.

From the 1980s onwards - the 747-200Bs gradually took over from the DC10-30s and the middle-east stopover eventually standardised to Dubai.

Hope this helps.

British Airways meanwhile operated the more popular flights via Bahrain, Muscat or Bombay between London and Kuala Lumpur at the time - operating a mix of VC10s, 747s and from the 1980s the L1011 Tristars.
Flight numbers were BA889/BA888 and BA9/10 then operations slowly became more combined with Singapore operations as BA11/12 and BA11/14 (operating to Brunei) before becoming BA32/33 when the Tristars tookover the route.

British Airways and Malaysian Airlines System actually code-shared in the early 1970s for those who were unaware.

On a related topic - in fact - Qantas operated the fastest Sydney-Kuala Lumpur-Bahrain-London 707 V Jet service in the late 1960s/early 1970s and at the time reigned supreme on the KL-London route.
I still remember the very last Qantas 747 service from London arriving at Kuala Lumpur Subang Airport as a boy - my family were travelling on that very flight as there were no further flights available from London with QF after that evenings arrival (so they had to book on to that service and avoid the hassle of reissuing tickets - which in those days meant tedious trips to the Qantas office in London i seem to recall)!

User currently offlinetimz From United States of America, joined Sep 1999, 7092 posts, RR: 7
Reply 4, posted (3 years 3 days 12 hours ago) and read 4048 times:

In 8/76 they just had one flight to Europe: the twice-weekly 707 left KUL 2300, stopped Kuwait 0220-0330, arrived LHR 0800.

User currently offlinemusang From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2001, 920 posts, RR: 6
Reply 5, posted (3 years 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 3903 times:

Quoting MAS777 (Reply 3):
from the 1980s the L1011 Tristars.

May 1979 I believe. I flew to LHR on G-BFCC in July that year, via KUL and BOM.

Quoting MAS777 (Reply 3):
Flight numbers were MH1/2/3/4/5/6 (depending on the stopover city in Europe

As timz points out, initially they were one stop, presumably to compete with the QF flights MAS777 mentions, and had three digit flight numbers.

See here: http://www.timetableimages.com/ttimages/complete/complete.htm

Interesting trend reversal in that long haul flights Europe - Asia generally experienced a reduction in the number of intermediate stops as time progressed, as the stops got their own dedicated services, increased frequency meant different stops could be made on different days, and aircraft range improved.

Thanks for the replies - musang

User currently offlineMAS777 From United Kingdom, joined Jul 1999, 2939 posts, RR: 6
Reply 6, posted (3 years 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 2991 times:

Interesting you flew lhr-kul in 1979 on the Tristar as i believe in 1979, KUL was still exclusively served by 747s at the time. Singapore on the other hand was served by the Tristar 500 which was a route BA felt the Tristar was ideal for at the time. I could be wrong. Oh well...

Ps am unsure of the link posted as it generally gives excess fares information.. .?

User currently offlinemusang From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2001, 920 posts, RR: 6
Reply 7, posted (3 years 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 2934 times:

Apologies All who tried the link. try this one:


MAS777 you're clearly well versed in Far Eastern historical matters! My interest stems from living in Singapore through the '70s, so of course I find your posts fascinating! Did the TriStars ever do the BSB shuttle? I always assumed they terminated in SIN, and from memory they started in about May '79. 747s were of course still going through to Aus.

I have clear memories of the flight, my first in a TriStar - for some reason I had b/w film in the camera and still have the rather poor time exposure of the aircraft at KUL. I managed to get in the cockpit for an autoland at LHR in fog, the tech crew being particularly surly and miserable as I recall!

Regards - musang

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