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Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 4:04 am

Pan American Airways, one of the pioneers of aviation is today a skeleton of what it used to be. The once glamorous airline that had a stunning fleet of Boeing 747s that flew to all corners of the earth has been reduced to a mere scavenger in the industry. The rise and fall of Pan Am is a wonderful storyline that I believe every aviation lover should be familiar with. Pan Am is responsible for many of the modern day marvels that we have grown so used to utilizing today.

  • Navy style pilot uniforms

  • Launch customer of the 747!

  • Trans-oceanic navigation

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    These are a few of the many contributions that Pan Am has brought into our aviation world today. Currently, Pan Am is running a small network between Orlando Sanford Airport and the Carribean. They also have charter operations.

    Would or does anyone want to see Pan Am one day with a fleet of 777s, 747-400s, 737-800s, and CRJs? I believe that Pan Am could make a great stride and benefit from their marvelous historical image (minus a few incidents) as a platform to prosper again. With a clean sheet and a new management, does anyone else think its possible?

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    RE: Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

    Wed Feb 11, 2004 4:07 am


    Unless an existing "megacarrier" would purchase the Pan Am name and logo and rename itself.

    Homer: Facts are meaningless. You could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!
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    RE: Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

    Wed Feb 11, 2004 4:11 am

    the Pan Am today ISNT Pan American World Airways. I dont even reffer to it as Pan Am, i call it Guilford Transportation Airlines, cause thats really what it is.

    And i dont see why PA would come back... yea sure it has a long glorious past, but also bad management, a huge debt, labor problems... well enough said.

    Pan American died in 1991. And besides the rebranded LCCs using its name it will never come back.

    As it is the US market can't afford to have it back either.
    Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.
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    RE: Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

    Wed Feb 11, 2004 4:23 am

    It might come back. If all the nations of the world scrap their own airlines and ask the United States to provide them with air service. On the other hand they might not.

    At one time it was said that PanAm had more route miles than the rest of the world's airlines combined. Don't know if that proves to be true but surely something like it was.

    Amelia Earhart's much-maligned navigator Fred Noonan played a big part in establishing PanAm's navigation programs. (After a bit of a career on commercial sail, including rounding Cape Horn) He was better than his final flight would suggest.

    I feel privileged that I got to fly on the real PanAm a few times. Fantastic meal service on the quick flight from Danang to Kai Tak! I even had a near-miss with PanAm 707s twice. Once at Tan Son Nhut and once at Reno where the 707 was on a training flight. The world's skies are kind of empty without the "World's most experienced airline."

    Among my treasures and trash I have some unpublished photos of a PanAm DC-2 and Consolidated Commodores, inluding the tail of one sticking up out of the water of Limon Bay, Panama.

    World's most experienced indeed!

    Happiness is not seeing another trite Ste. Maarten photo all week long.
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    RE: Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

    Wed Feb 11, 2004 4:40 am

    Just like Elvis, the KING is gone.

    The current version (Pan Am 3.0) is a pale imitation. Kudos to Guliford for reviving the name, but that's about it, really. And all the best for trying to provide "Clipper Class" quality service. Hell, I almost booked a flight to anyplace they flew when service was initiated out of St.Pete/Clearwater, just to say "I've flown Pan Am, again!" I wish them a long life.

    Now, most passengers will vote with their pocket books as to whom to fly. The panache and esteem of the name isn't viable. And the recent past of bad press might have left a sour taste in folks mouths.
    If you don't stand for SOMETHING, you'll fall for ANYTHING.

    RE: Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

    Wed Feb 11, 2004 5:59 am

    Who cares?

    There are plenty of airlines out there to get you from point A to point B with an adequate level of service. Pan Am is just a name, an airline is just a company, get on with your life. Any future incarnations would be Pan Am in name only.

    For the record Braniff, TWA, Eastern, Ozark, and many others are ALSO dead and will never come back. Is the world worse off because of this? No.
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    RE: Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

    Thu Feb 12, 2004 3:47 am

    Who cares? Well, actually a lot of people do. Americans and foreign nationals alike. Pan American had a great influence on many peoples lives. And those influences run deep. From the refugee fleeing a falling nation, to families being reunited, the local Pan Am office helping a wayward traveler because PAA had connections, to the business man who completed a big business deal and then flew home on PAA.

    Pan Am today has a logo that is still recognized around the world. And this from a company that ceased flying in 1991.

    The sentiment runs deep.

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    RE: Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

    Thu Feb 12, 2004 5:19 am

    Very well said commander_rabb

    There are lots of emotions in connection with airlines, and Pan Am was certainly one of those airlines that created a ripple effect (emotionally) when it went down the first time. Airlines seem to have more than a business entity to them, people working within the airline become attached and for those of you who have seen the ceremony for Pan Am's closing day, it looked like a funeral. There were candles and people crying.

    If Pan Am were to revive, there would be lots momentum behind them and they WOULD be succesful.

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    RE: Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

    Thu Feb 12, 2004 5:39 am

    The Pan Am that exists today is not the same organization as Juan Trippe's Chosen Instrument. The name was simply borrowed. As for the reincarnation of Pan Am, don't count on it. The airline that launched the 747, that launched the world into the modern jet age, because the 707 was the world's first successful commercial jetliner in service, the airline that along with TWA established the largest global network the world had and in my opinion still has ever know, is no more. It took Pan Am almost 30 years to get as big as got. They have been gone for 14 years. When a great airline falls, it is done. It is impossible for Pan Am to rebuild themselves to their legendary status.
    Fly one thing; Fly it well

    RE: Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

    Thu Feb 12, 2004 5:52 am

    I still say who cares? As I said in my last post an Airline is just a company offering a service that many other companies offer. Yes a lot of people have memories of Pan Am taking them all over the world and whatever else. My first flight was on Piedmont, you don't see me crying about someone bringing them back do you? An airline is just a company, an airplane is just a mode of transportation. The strong survive and the weak die. If PAA was truly the greatest thing on earth as many on here seem to think they would still be hauling people around.

    I love airplanes as much as anybody on this board but the thing i will never get is people crying over a company going out of business or everyone figuring out an particular type of airplane is no longer capable of making money so its time for it to go.
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    RE: Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

    Thu Feb 12, 2004 5:56 am

    I guess Bob Dylan said it best "The times they are a changing!"
    You can cut the irony with a knife
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    RE: Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

    Thu Feb 12, 2004 5:58 am

    I'm not saying the world is awful without Pan Am, Startvalve. I'm just simply explaining how an airline as huge as Pan Am cannot rebuild itself once it is gone. TWA was a heartbreaker for me when it went bankrupt, but I have adapted to the change. I have just forgotten TWA considerably and moved on to the other airlines. Are we bad w/o TWA and Pan Am? No. They built the huge global network that is now shared by the great airlines of today. It hurts that these airlines are gone, but by no means is this horrible. Think of American as the airline boosted by TWA, and United as the airline boosted by Pan Am. Their successors are every bit as capable as they were.
    Fly one thing; Fly it well
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    RE: Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

    Thu Feb 12, 2004 6:03 am

    Maybe this will be United's true rebranding -- as Pan Am!

    After all, they've got most of the Pan Am pieces... Smile


    RE: Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

    Thu Feb 12, 2004 6:09 am

    I wonder who will buy the United pieces when they go the way of Pan Am. Strangely enough they will go from the same syndrome that killed Pan Am, we have been doing it this way for 50 years so damnit lets keep doing it like that.
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    RE: Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

    Thu Feb 12, 2004 6:11 am

    As much as I hate it, Pan Am is gone. Bankruptcy and shutdown are as much a part of the great original Pan Am as the Boeing 707 or 747. The closet thing you will find to the original Pan Am today is a combination of United and Delta. The spirit of Pan Am is reflected most in its people and it is at both UA and DL where you will still find the same people who served you chateaubriand and caviar, the same people who served you eggs cooked to order, the same people who can speak multiple languages. So even if there is an airline in the future called Pan Am serving all five continents of the world, it will never be the same thing.
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    RE: Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

    Thu Feb 12, 2004 6:17 am

    I hope it does not come back. Pan Am will forever be associated with Flight 103 and terrorism and planes exploding in mid-air.
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    RE: Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

    Thu Feb 12, 2004 6:19 am

    It's just a name. The image and aura of the original Pan Am cannot be re-created unless you can turn back the clock to the mid 1960s.
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    RE: Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

    Thu Feb 12, 2004 6:20 am

    all five continents of the world

    Seven continents, six need scheduled air service.

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    RE: Will Pan Am Ever Come Back?

    Thu Feb 12, 2004 6:24 am

    This is a very interesting topic. I must say that I agree with Commander_Rabb and MEA321, there are lots of people who associate great memories to Pan American. The Pan Am logo and name was the second most recognized brand after Coca-Cola worldwide! That being said, everybody knew what Pan Am stood for.

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    However, the problem I'd see is that Pan Am and TWA basically had the monopole on international routes and that's why they were so huge, today that wouldn't happen anymore.
    If Pan Am ever comes back internationally, and that is what it's supposed for, then on a much smaller scale.
    I believe that a new Pan Am should cooperate closely with an US domestic airline, say JetBlue, to feed its own international network. That would be a great strategy to revive them as they were highly recognized for international flights only.
    I don't believe that any of the majors would ever rebrand into Pan Am, none of them would give up their corporate ID for that. At the time PA went bankrupt I guess they had a very bad reputation and that is why neither Delta nor United wanted think about that move.
    Well, I don't know if we'll ever see good old PA back here in Europe, but I certainly do wish for that to happen a lot as PA was MORE than just an airline.
    I guess anybody who either worked for them or flew them a lot would wish the same.


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