Dr.DTW From United States of America, joined May 2000, 290 posts, RR: 1 Posted (13 years 10 months 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 1297 times:
Was just wondering if someone could give me a brief history on Air Florida (US carrier that folded in the mid-80's). Was it one of the post-deregulation carriers? Did they merge with one of the majors, or did they just liquidate the assets?
Fanofjets From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 2114 posts, RR: 3
Reply 2, posted (13 years 10 months 4 days 5 hours ago) and read 1206 times:
I don't know much about the history, but the Miami-based airline flew an assortment of second-hand and leased Boeing 737-100 and -200, DC-9-15, and DC-10-30 aircraft, along with the Cessna 402, Martin 404, CASA 212. They also flew a 707-320 and a Lockheed L-188 Electra. I believe the airline started service in the early 1970s.
The 1982 crash Jmc1975 mentions caused a great deal of bad publicity for the airline. Pity... I flew them on a charter flight from JFK to LGW in 1983 (DC-10-30CF N3035); the service was among the best I have experienced. The cabin crew was extremely attentive, and the pilots highly professional.
Dutchjet From Netherlands, joined exactly 15 years ago today! , 7864 posts, RR: 56
Reply 4, posted (13 years 10 months 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 1187 times:
One of the original low-fare airlines that really grew after US airline deregulation and almost survived. Air Florida started as an intra-state carrier in Florida and has a bizzare fleet of aircraft that I do not even remember, but finally settled on 4 DC9-15s that shuttled between Miami, Tallahasee, Tampa and other Florida cities. When they could extend routes outside of Florida, the chose the 737-200, and bought lots of them, new examples from Boeing and used examples from other sources, including many 737-222s from United. They also had one or two 737-100s, I think that those were originally built for SQ. They also flew the 727-200 Advanced, I think also 4 copies, that were picked up out of an order placed by Braniff which had gone bankrupt at that point. Their routes extended from Florida up the Eastern Coast to DC and Boston and also served the important Florida-New York City route. I also remember services to some cities in the central USA. They also had routes to certain Carib destinations, cant remember where exactly except for St Thomas and St Croix which I am certain about.
Air Florida then went international with flights from Miami (and Orlando and Tampa I think) to Europe - these were with 3 DC-10-30 Convertibles originally operated by Transamerica Airlines (the company with the wonderful tower in San Fran - they got out of the airline business.)
Air Florida had plans for further expansion and placed one of the first orders for the B757-200 (remember, that airliner was not exactly popular when first presented to the airlines - hard to believe now.)
They had terrible accident at DCA due to icing on the wing which hurt their reputation, around the same time People Express entered the low-fare market and took the spotlight away from Air Florida, especially on the East Coast of the US, and the problems in the economy in the early 1980s (the 20% interest rate days in the US) lead to their collapse.
Believe it or not, Air FLorida flew from White Plains, NY to BOS, DCA, Chicago (dont remember which airport) and Bermuda, of all places. I flew HPN-BOS a couple of times, on the 737-100s, and the planes were full with full fare customers.
Sccutler From United States of America, joined Jan 2000, 5932 posts, RR: 26
Reply 5, posted (13 years 10 months 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 1165 times:
The DC accident was due to icing, but the main issue was not the ice on the wings, but rather, ice in probes causing erroneous EPR readings, leading the pilots to believe that they were taking off with full power (from instrument readings), when (in fact) they had barely enough power to get off the ground (really not enough to fly). Tragic, but lessons learned.
...three miles from BRONS, clear for the ILS one five approach...
Exusair From United States of America, joined Sep 2000, 684 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (13 years 10 months 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 1159 times:
Among one of the more famous alumni of Air florida was Ed Acker.
Acker went on to Pan Am as Chairman and CEO after Seawell. Acker was responsible for adding the 737-200 into the Pan Am fleet. There were only a handful of copies of this a/c and I beleive they were used on the intra-German routes.
Cody From United States of America, joined May 1999, 1948 posts, RR: 8
Reply 9, posted (13 years 10 months 4 days ago) and read 1139 times:
Dutchjet did a very good job of summarizing it. I can add to what he gave you a list of most of the cities they served.
Miami, PBI, MCO, Daytona Beach, FLL, JAX, PEN, TLH, TPA, MSY (Air Florida Commuter only), Ocala, Key West, Freeport, North Eleuthra (with 737's), Grand Turk, Santo Domingo (from MIA and at one point JFK nonstop), Port Au Prince, Puerto Plata, San Salvadore, Tegucigalpa, San Jose (Costa Rica), Panama City (authority but never operated), Marathon, STT, STX, Montego Bay, Kingston, Cozumel (charters), Las Vegas (charters only from MSP), Georgetown, Gainesville, Treasure Cay, Marsh Harobour, Rock Sound, Belize, San Pedro, DCA, IAD, PHL, HPN, BOS, TOL, ORD, MDW, EWR, LGA, JFK, ISP (very briefly and I don't believe it was ever published), CHS, SAV, DFW, Houston, Burlington VT, Cancun (charter only), Mazatlan (charter only), Zihuatanejo (charter only), Shannon, London, Brussels, Amsterdam, Zurich, Tel Aviv, Madrid, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt (charter only), Oslo, Stockholm, Bermuda, Naples, Fort Myers, Quebec City (charters), Cincinatti, Cleveland, Columbus, Detroit, Indianapolis.....pretty impressive system!
By 1984, they were in major financial straits and the guy in charge of sheduling started opening new routes to just about anywhere to make some money. I know they were supposed to operate from Long Beach to LAX (with no link to the east coast) and from Pensacola to Denver. Again I am not sure if they ever got these routes up and running. The MIA-MAD and MIA-LGW routes went to Eastern. At the end Midway only ended up with seven 737's and a few routes from MDW to Florida as well as nonstops from IND and DTW to Orlando. They also operated HPN to DCA and from MIA to TPA, MCO, STT, and STX and from PBI to TPA. Midway also took over Air Florida's repair station in MIA.
I believe this aircraft was originally operated by Overseas National; I remember seeing that airline's logos inside the plane. This plane, along with three ordered by Trans International, still flies, carrying cargo for Federal Express (according to Bill Harms):
N101TV (del. 4/73) is now N301FE
N102TV (del. 6/73) is now N302FE
N103TV (del. 7/73) is now N303FE
N3035F (del. 9/78) is now N304FE
The aeroplane has unveiled for us the true face of the earth. -Antoine de Saint-Exupery