User avatar
SLCUT2777
Topic Author
Posts: 3407
Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2006 12:17 am

Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Tue Oct 31, 2006 10:58 pm

USAToday has a great article in it's on-line edition about the final paychecks and payments coming from the PanAm liquidation trust, nearly 15 years after it ceased to operate as the USA's premiere overseas carrier. The article further took an in depth look at what brought about PanAm's demise and the mistakes made along the corporate history road-path.
http://www.usatoday.com/travel/flights/2006-10-30-pan-am-usat_x.htm
Your thoughts?
DELTA Air Lines; The Only Way To Fly from Salt Lake City; Let the Western Heritage always be with Delta!
 
Stokes
Posts: 21
Joined: Tue Oct 10, 2006 5:09 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Tue Oct 31, 2006 11:10 pm

I doubt this contributed much to the fall of PanAm, but I loved their liberal upgrade policy. I traveled every few weeks to Europe through JFK on a coach ticket, could waltz into the business lounge, say "please" and walk out with a biz class ride. Worked equally well on the other end, esp. Vienna, once you got to know the staff.

PA also famous for the easiest phone # asks off flight attendants in airline history! Is it a coincidence that I got married a year after PA went belly up?

Gawd I miss Pan Am.
 
nosedive
Posts: 2176
Joined: Sun May 23, 2004 2:18 pm

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Tue Oct 31, 2006 11:15 pm

There were the problems of digesting the National acquisition as well....
 
Kevin777
Posts: 951
Joined: Mon Sep 25, 2006 5:36 pm

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Tue Oct 31, 2006 11:18 pm

I'm sure Pan Am was a wonderful airline to fly on (a bit too young to have tried it, or at least remember..) - but IMHO neither the 747, nor U.S. deregulation brought Pan Am down. They can only thank themselves for that - inefficient operations, costs out of control, fire sales of their most precious assets (routes) etc.. They dug they're own grave..

Kevin777
"I was waiting for you at DFW, but you must have been in LUV" CPH-HAM-CPH CR9
 
milesrich
Posts: 1508
Joined: Sun Jul 06, 2003 2:46 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 12:19 am

Pan Am was destroyed by the following decisions and events:

1. The granting of Trans Atlantic Routes to other airlines, i.e: AA and DL from DFW, DL from ATL, BN from DFW, NA from MIA. These inroads negated the need for passengers to connect to Pan Am flights at their transatlantic gateways.

2. The introduction of too many 747's, creating too much capacity. Pan Am made other bad equipment decisions too, the most glaring waiting to buy the L-1011-500 rather than opting for the DC-10-30 or 40. Their lack of preventive maintenance early on also led to higher costs in the 80's. When they traded the NA DC-10's to AA for 747-123's, American sued them for fraud, for misrepresenting the condition of the former National Airplanes.

3. Terrible management and service. Believe it or not, TWA became the preferred carrier where they competed with Pan Am. As my dad, who was a frequent Trans Atlantic business passenger, used to say: "Pan Am acts like they are doing you a favor to give you a seat.

4. The acquisition of National Airlines. Wrong airline, terrible timing, and paid way to much, thanks to the price being bid way up by Frank Lorenzo and Frank Borman. National gave little feed to the JFK Transatlantic Hub (Florida Cities, CHS, PHF, ORH only), and the acquisition was made right at the time it wasn't needed, as deregulation took effect soon after. Their Pacific routes were only fed from IAH and MSY. At the time, the story of the acquisition was they were really getting the routes for free, because of the then value of the National's fleet of 727's and DC-10's. The used airplane increased price value was a short lived phenomena. Plus Pan Am got stuck with a work force and seniority list problems that really never were solved.

5. Concentration on North Atlantic routes which had poor yields due to the subsidies paid to their competition, which were mostly government owned carriers.

6. Then later, sale of their two best assets: The LHR routes, and the high yield Pacific routes.

7. A VERY poor safety record, prior to the bombing of PA 103. Pan Am had several 707 fatal crashes, two in Pago Pago I recall, and a two or so others, caused by pilot error, that exposed problems with their training program.

If my last Pan Am trip in 1989 had been the rule and not the exception, they might have made it. I flew MIA - GIG in Business Class on a 747-122 acquired from United, that was a great flight, with great service, food and a crew that was the best. Senior flight attendants that started on the 377 that gave the absolutely best service.

I have not read the USA Today article, but one thing that is certain, Delta Air Lines did not cause Pan Am to shut down, contrary to what many have posted here.
 
Door5Right
Posts: 691
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2005 9:29 pm

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 12:22 am

The airline never recovered from the horror of Pan Am 103 blowing up over Lockerbie in 1988. Passenger numbers plumeted thereafter although the airline was already in serious financial trouble by that stage.
My soul is in the sky...
 
walter747
Posts: 1379
Joined: Sun Oct 22, 2006 9:49 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 12:25 am

such a shame to see a great american airline fail
Hussel, Hussel, Husel, Grind, Grind, Grind
 
LawnDart
Posts: 861
Joined: Fri May 20, 2005 11:33 pm

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 12:30 am

Quoting Milesrich (Reply 4):
Pan Am was destroyed by the following decisions and events:

Milesrich...a very intelligent post, thanks!

Quoting Milesrich (Reply 4):
Pan Am made other bad equipment decisions too, the most glaring waiting to buy the L-1011-500 rather than opting for the DC-10-30 or 40.

And then adding the A300/A310...what widebody aircraft didn't Pan Am operate? The one they should've...the B767.

Quoting Milesrich (Reply 4):
3. Terrible management and service.

Notably C. Edward Acker...

Quoting Milesrich (Reply 4):
6. Then later, sale of their two best assets: The LHR routes, and the high yield Pacific routes.

Although I agree with you, it begs the question...why didn't UA become one of the strongest carriers in the U.S., since they acquired both of these assets.

Quoting Milesrich (Reply 4):
4. The acquisition of National Airlines.

I'm still in mourning...
 
User avatar
SLCUT2777
Topic Author
Posts: 3407
Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2006 12:17 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 12:34 am

Quoting Door5right (Reply 5):
The airline never recovered from the horror of Pan Am 103 blowing up over Lockerbie in 1988. Passenger numbers plummeted thereafter although the airline was already in serious financial trouble by that stage.

That said, I think the Canary Islands carnage from 1977 was the start of that downfall.

Quoting Milesrich (Reply 4):
I have not read the USA Today article, but one thing that is certain, Delta Air Lines did not cause Pan Am to shut down, contrary to what many have posted here.

The article is a GREAT READ for all the PanAm enthusiasts here on a.net, so I suggest they take a good in-depth read. But thank you for clarifying that Delta did not destroy PanAm. In fact they hurt themselves financially for too long by paying too much for PanAm's trans-Atlantic routes.
DELTA Air Lines; The Only Way To Fly from Salt Lake City; Let the Western Heritage always be with Delta!
 
jfk777
Posts: 5861
Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2006 7:23 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 8:30 am

Pan Am was hurt by too many 747's, inefficient 747SP just to fly to NRT from JFK and the Arab oil embargo of the late 1970's. Pan AM never invested in the mid 1980's in 747-200B with capabilty to fly from nonstop JFK to NRT. They kept using the same old ones, with less range and payload, had since 1970 until they closed in 1991. PA should have purchased UA or AA with the big ORD midwest hub so crucial to the international operations of those airlines today.
 
N231YE
Posts: 2620
Joined: Tue Jul 25, 2006 9:24 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 8:47 am

Quoting Milesrich (Reply 4):
4. The acquisition of National Airlines. Wrong airline, terrible timing, and paid way to much, thanks to the price being bid way up by Frank Lorenzo and Frank Borman.

Thank you for posting this. This is probably the biggest of all of PA's mistakes. I learned this in an air transport class; after deregulation, PA, who was mostly an international carrier, wanted to increase their presence nationally. In doing so, they bought National Airlines, and expanded too rapidly, and the income from the domestic operations could not pay off the sale. Thus Pan Am never made a profit in the 1980s, and by the late 80s/early 90s, in the sale of its routes and liquidation, PA literally bled to death. Interesting that the article failed to mention this.

Quoting Milesrich (Reply 4):
I have not read the USA Today article, but one thing that is certain, Delta Air Lines did not cause Pan Am to shut down, contrary to what many have posted here.

Most certainly. Delta bought many of PA's routes, but did not take the risk of purchasing the defunct airline. AA took the risk and bought bankrupt TWA, and then...9/11. AA came close to the brink of bankruptcy (which AA is the only carrier to have never been in bankruptcy), but they were lucky, and pulled through.

Quoting Milesrich (Reply 4):
2. The introduction of too many 747's, creating too much capacity.

Unfortunately for PanAm, they never saw it coming. It was known that air travel had increased exponentially throughout the 1960s, and both PA and Boeing saw this as an opportunity to create a bigger aircraft to accomodate more passengers. However, the oil embargo caused damage to both sides (the 747 line slowed to a trickle in the 1970s), while high costs killed the airline industry,and the 747s for which PA was eager to use, did not become economically viable.

*It should also be mentioned, that PA was one of the airlines that thrived in the regulated environment-not a well run business. When the CAB sunset started to occur, PA was left on its own, and could not compete. It joined Braniff and Eastern as causalities of deregulation.

[Edited 2006-11-01 00:55:24]
 
User avatar
SLCUT2777
Topic Author
Posts: 3407
Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2006 12:17 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 8:49 am

Quoting LawnDart (Reply 7):
Milesrich...a very intelligent post, thanks!

Very much agreed!

Quoting LawnDart (Reply 7):
And then adding the A300/A310...what widebody aircraft didn't Pan Am operate? The one they should've...the B767.

Going with Airbus at that point was not very smart. Sticking with Boeing and perhaps adding the 762LR first and later the 763 ER would have been VERY good for PanAM, just ask DL today.

Quoting LawnDart (Reply 7):
Notably C. Edward Acker...

Is he closely related to Leo Mullin or Ronald W. Allen? The two who nearly destroyed DL.

Quoting Jfk777 (Reply 9):
Pan AM never invested in the mid 1980's in 747-200B with capability to fly from nonstop JFK to NRT. They kept using the same old ones, with less range and payload, had since 1970 until they closed in 1991.

This and the lack of 762s and 763s was a killer. They took delivery of too many 747s right out of the chute, and really never found a way to use these a/c in an operationally efficient manner.

Quoting Jfk777 (Reply 9):
PA should have purchased UA or AA with the big ORD midwest hub so crucial to the international operations of those airlines today.

By the time the era of De-regulation had stated PA was already seriously wounded and could not afford to merge with AA or UA, and get a viable interior USA hub at ORD or DFW. DL clearly saw this in the late 1980s and having just swallowed Western, they really couldn't afford what they paid for the PA Trans-Atlantic routes not to mention the worthless Airbus A310s they inherited with that acquisition.
DELTA Air Lines; The Only Way To Fly from Salt Lake City; Let the Western Heritage always be with Delta!
 
FriendlySkies
Posts: 3540
Joined: Fri Aug 13, 2004 3:57 pm

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 8:51 am

Quoting LawnDart (Reply 7):
Although I agree with you, it begs the question...why didn't UA become one of the strongest carriers in the U.S., since they acquired both of these assets.

During most of the 90's, I'd argue that UA WAS the strongest carrier in the US.
 
steeler83
Posts: 7391
Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2006 2:06 pm

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 9:25 am

I did like seeing PanAm with the 747, but 78 of them? That IS way to many to operate. How many does the average international airline have now, like 30 or 40 at the most? With that oil situation from the '70s, I would have sold some of those gas guzzling planes... Some 747s, L1011, the 707s, what was PanAm doing with all of those expensive planes that they had trouble filling? I mean, the 707 had how many seats, well over 200, like upwards of 220 or 230 seats, and that was the smallest of the 707, L1011, A300, and 747 aircraft!

What was the deal with National Airlines? Yeah, someone said that they provided very little connectivity and feed to the JFK transatlantic hub. What did PanAm do that lead them to buying that airline? What did they consider, observe, review, etc...?

Man, If I win the super jackpot of like 300million, I would like to buy that airline and restart it the correct way. Then again, there is already quite a bit of capacity now and it would only lead to yet another downfall...
Do not bring stranger girt into your room. The stranger girt is dangerous, it will hurt your life.
 
lijnden
Posts: 528
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2003 1:34 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 9:28 am

Pan Am was struggling for years economical, selling off all key assets to keep investors pleased for about 5 to 10 years. Even with the low fuel prices of the late 80's and early 90's Pan Am simply couldn't cope and fill the planes with good paying passengers. One of the reasons was that there was never a true replacement for the B707 and that Pan Am never expected the twin engines to be granted to fly ETOPS. There was also some sort of problem between Boeing and Pan Am and because of this and Pan Am never bought a Boeing again. I think the B757 and B767 would have been perfect for Pan Am as would be the F-100 as a feeder. So, I think the direct factors that caused PA to go belly up was the ETOPS, the lack of B757/B767 as a replacement for the B707 and a very poor feeder network. If Pan Am would have survived they would have flown mainly with A310/A330/A340 internationally and B727/F-100 domestic. I think they would have joined the star*-alliance.
Be kind to animals! Next trip: ORF-ORD-NRT-IAH-ORF
 
jfk777
Posts: 5861
Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2006 7:23 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 9:42 am

Pan A, did operate many 747 but never 60-something, they operated 45 in the mid 1980's before the Asian sale to UA. 40 747 for service to Europe and South America wouldhave been too much after Asia was sold.
 
USPIT10L
Posts: 1870
Joined: Tue Mar 28, 2006 12:24 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 9:51 am

Quoting Steeler83 (Reply 13):
What was the deal with National Airlines? Yeah, someone said that they provided very little connectivity and feed to the JFK transatlantic hub. What did PanAm do that lead them to buying that airline? What did they consider, observe, review, etc...?

Pan Am decided to buy another airline with the money that had been earned from 1977-1979, instead of investing that money in new equipment and routes to build up a domestic network. If they had built their own domestic network, JFK, MIA and SFO would've had more of a chance to make money on their own, instead of relying on interline connections. Network-wise that was Pan Am's biggest problem after deregulation, and it was one reason why the company ultimately failed.

The 747 did contribute to Pan Am's demise, but by the time they went belly-up, twenty years had gone by--the business changed--and Pan Am was unable to adapt.
It's a Great Day for Hockey!
 
ualcsr
Posts: 348
Joined: Sat May 27, 2006 12:53 pm

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 12:27 pm

Can anyone recommend a good book about the demise of Pan Am; something similar to John Nance's Braniff book, "Splash of Colors"? Thanks in advance.
 
ikramerica
Posts: 13772
Joined: Mon May 23, 2005 9:33 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 12:44 pm

Quoting Steeler83 (Reply 13):
How many does the average international airline have now, like 30 or 40 at the most?

It's actually 30-60 or so for the biggest airlines (who operate the 747 at all), but many carriers are phasing some out and not replacing them with more 747s...
Of all the things to worry about... the Wookie has no pants.
 
movingtin
Posts: 87
Joined: Sat Oct 21, 2006 1:03 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 1:15 pm

Quoting LawnDart (Reply 7):
Although I agree with you, it begs the question...why didn't UA become one of the strongest carriers in the U.S., since they acquired both of these assets

I believe UA has been in the top 3 of US airlines since those purchases! care to elabarate on your comment?
 
User avatar
zippyjet
Posts: 5089
Joined: Tue Sep 04, 2001 3:32 pm

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 1:19 pm

""You'll never get on an airline that is as good as Pan Am was," says 83-year-old Mary Goshgarin, the unofficial keeper of the Pan Am flame. For 35 years she worked in the Clipper Club, Pan Am's lounge for VIPs at the Miami airport. Now she runs, on a strictly volunteer basis, the Pan Am Aware store, a treasure trove of Pan Am memorabilia at the Miami airport."

A paragraph from this story. I visited the little store/shrine of Pan Am classic.
It is a 5 minute ride from MIA terminal. There is a 1960s vintage no tell motel called the Airways Inn that has free shuttle bus to their lobby. The Pan Am Aware store is across busy S.W. 36th. st. Cross at your own risk but, it is worth it! My buddy and I shuttled over to the no tell motel, and quickly scurried across the bustling multi laned street to the museaum/store. We both bought wall clocks with the Pan Am "meatball" and the second hand has a little jet at the end. Cool! Though we are both FL crew, I and my buddy don't think we are traders to our own company. There will never be another Pan Am classic! And, with Pan Am passing, that has paved the way for our company to take over many of those old National/Pan Am domestic routes and do quite well. A lot of A-Netter's consider us the next incarnation of Eastern! (our route structure)



The 747 being the beginning of the end for Pan Am? Maybe yes and maybe no!
Back in the swinging 60s it was the three B's Beetles, Batman and Bond. And, if you flew, it was Pan Am and Eastern! Who knew dreregulation would be flying their way in a dozen years? Pan Am and other international carriers relyin on 707 and DC-8s? Both excellent birds but, thirsty and inefficient as the first of the oil shortages and price gouging started. 40 years ago, it was projected that air travel would grow even under the regulated system. It did!
Though the hump nosed jumbo was costly, it proved superior over it's airliner brothers from Lockheed and Douglass. The latter two companies encountered financial issues (lockheed) and reliability and safety issues (Douglass).

Pan Am was always a trendsetter! First 707 service in '58. They even ordered the De Havilland Comet before, it imploded in midair back in the early 50s.
Pan Am was even one of the first to sign on the dotted line for the Boeing 2707 supersonic.



OK so these are models. But, I know online there are actual artist renderings of Boeing 2707 jets with the "meatball" on them.

The other reasons stated in the article are on the money or for Pan Am lack of.

And, to end on a lighter note, the two of us took our lives in our hands and crossed the street back to the roach motel to get the shuttle back to MIA.
They eyed us suspicially with all the booty we bought from the Pan Am Aware store!
They asked if we were guests of their lodging establishment? With quick Zippyjetthinking, I whipped out a picture of this blonde sexy flight attendant named Muffy who likes to wear her blues as short as possible; I told the dude, I think his name was Riande: "We have to pick up my friend Muffy and then arrange to have your van pick us up at the airport. Well, folks, a good source says Riande and company are still asking where the two dudes and the hottie flight attendant are? Soon, I'll post a pic of Muffy.  bouncy 
I'm Zippyjet & I approve of this message!
 
User avatar
SLCUT2777
Topic Author
Posts: 3407
Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2006 12:17 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 1:42 pm

Zippyjet: What airline nowadays has the torch been passed to that reminds you and others of what PanAm was once upon a time? Emirates? Singapore? Cathay Pacific?

I think it was a combination of several things that spiraled out of control: Too Many 1st generation 747s along with other significant fleet errors, Energy spikes of the 1970s, De-regulation of the domestic market in the USA along with the allowing of other carriers aside from PanAm and TWA to do overseas flying and the poor management that didn't know how to deal with change and do a significant paradigm shift from the late 1970s onward ultimately doomed this storied carrier. When it rains it pours and by the 1980s it was.

For some nostalgia, go and rent Steven Spielberg's "Catch Me If You Can" starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks. You'll see PanAm featured with all of its 1960s and early 1970s nostalgia we all enjoy and wish could some how return.
DELTA Air Lines; The Only Way To Fly from Salt Lake City; Let the Western Heritage always be with Delta!
 
LawnDart
Posts: 861
Joined: Fri May 20, 2005 11:33 pm

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 2:37 pm

Quoting Movingtin (Reply 19):
I believe UA has been in the top 3 of US airlines since those purchases! care to elabarate on your comment?

Sure, I'll elaborate...having purchased both Pan Am's lucrative Pacific and Heathrow rights, I wondered why UA hadn't become on of the strongest carriers in the U.S. Not one of the largest (they are that), but one of the strongest.

I think their recent trip through Chapter 11 is elaboration enough.
 
User avatar
clickhappy
Posts: 9042
Joined: Thu Sep 13, 2001 12:10 pm

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 2:51 pm

The end of the Cold War killed Pan Am. Pan Am was a great airline, but was also a tool of the US Government...once the wall fell it was all over.

When the Russians started retreating out of places like Africa in the early 80s Pan Am closed down a lot of routes that received under the table government $$$.
 
L1011Lover
Posts: 736
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2003 5:16 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 3:40 pm

Quoting LawnDart (Reply 7):
Although I agree with you, it begs the question...why didn't UA become one of the strongest carriers in the U.S., since they acquired both of these assets.

The acquisition of these routes is one reason why UA is still around!
 
airfrnt
Posts: 2002
Joined: Fri Jul 02, 2004 2:05 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 4:45 pm

Quote:

The massive, bump-nosed 747 was a technological marvel and a thing of beauty to airline buffs. But it was so big that it became a financial albatross. Pan Am never could consistently fill its fleet of 747s with enough passengers to cover the expense of flying them.

It's a rather unpopular truth, but it's still a fact that the huge boom in 747s did a amazing amount of damage to international carriers. Even Pan Am had problems filling their 747s, to say nothing about carriers like People Express (which had a single route - EWR to the old DEN that almost single handily bankrupted them) and the other carriers that signed on for "prestige" reasons.
 
milesrich
Posts: 1508
Joined: Sun Jul 06, 2003 2:46 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 11:06 pm

Peoples Express purchased their 747's used some 13-14 years after they were introduced into service. But most airlines had trouble filling them. Other than United, no "domestic" US airline kept them, unless you count Braniff that purchased their original 127, Big Orange for DAL/DFW - HNL, a route it operated almost every day in its Braniff career, including the last flight the original Braniff operated, HNL-DFW. (Yes, it did fly occasionally DFW-LGW). Eastern, Delta, National, and Continental all had 747's (Eastern's were leased Pan Am birds, but they ordered them new also but never took delivery), and got rid of them by the end of the 70's, opting for L-1011's or DC-10's. Continental later acquired People's birds. American ditched the 747 first selling the Space Shuttle transporter to NASA, and then trading the rest to Pan Am for NA's DC-10's. United used theirs primarily for ORD/LAX/SFO-HNL, and sold five of their original birds to Pan Am, but later acquired five American 123's from Pan Am. Most of the European National carriers operated 747's transAtlantic to JFK and ORD: BA, AF, Sabena, Swissair, Lufthansa, KLM, SAS, Air India, Aer Lingus, Olympic, and Iberia. While BA and AF still operate -400's trans Atlantic, how many other carriers do?

Pan Am had too many 747's as I said before, but their demise had many elements to it, not just one probable cause, unless you lump it all together and say, TERRIBLE MANAGEMENT.
 
BostonBeau
Posts: 480
Joined: Tue Sep 05, 2000 11:55 pm

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Wed Nov 01, 2006 11:20 pm

A decent book about the demise of Pan Am is "Skygods: The Fall of Pan Am" by Robert Gandt ISBN: 1888962119.
 
BHMNONREV
Posts: 1209
Joined: Thu Aug 28, 2003 9:17 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 12:16 am

Quoting Milesrich (Reply 4):
3. Terrible management and service. Believe it or not, TWA became the preferred carrier where they competed with Pan Am. As my dad, who was a frequent Trans Atlantic business passenger, used to say: "Pan Am acts like they are doing you a favor to give you a seat.

From my perspective, this was the principle reason for the beginning of the end for PanAm. I have heard several people make this same claim, this just reeks of arrogance, pure arrogance...
 
dtwclipper
Posts: 6668
Joined: Wed Oct 29, 2003 3:17 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 12:41 am

and just for fun:

Compare New York Air, the Airline that works for your Business
 
jcavinato
Posts: 392
Joined: Sun Jan 02, 2005 9:14 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 12:42 am

In 1969 PanAm was taking reservations for what would be their (and anyone's) first commercial flight to the moon. This was a carrier that knew how to create an excitement about travel. I worked in their Washington,DC office for a short stint in the late 60s.

They built fueling stations on small islands across the Pacific as well as small hotels for crew and passengers to rest and overnight on the multi-day flights to Asia.

Milesrich's post is fantastic. One more thing I would add is the dominant CEO who grew the company. Juan Trippe was a feisty, dictating, hands on CEO who is/was very common in succesful high growth companies in emerging industries. The trouble with them all is that their vice presidents and other management personnel only learn how to grow under the decision making style of the dictator. Once that founder is gone the management structure doesn't know how to manage/lead on their own. Stock market mavens are questioning FEDEX once Fred Smith leaves the property. Inside that company I see and hear a lot of people look around and ask, "Well what does Fred want?" whenever key decisions have to be made. They don't know how to bit the bullet on their own decisions. So, hollow management is another thing that Pan Am never got over.
 
Magyarorszag
Posts: 1072
Joined: Sun Sep 04, 2005 5:53 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 12:55 am

Quoting Ualcsr (Reply 17):
Can anyone recommend a good book about the demise of Pan Am; something similar to John Nance's Braniff book, "Splash of Colors"? Thanks in advance.

There are two books you must read I thinkand if you can get your hands on them:

http://www.amazon.com/American-Icaru...Majestic-Tragic-Fall/dp/1561671541
http://www.amazon.com/Skygods-Fall-P...02-0376963-5036925?ie=UTF8&s=books

Cheers.
 
tu154
Posts: 334
Joined: Fri Dec 17, 2004 1:37 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 3:12 am

Quoting L1011Lover (Reply 24):
The acquisition of these routes is one reason why UA is still around!

United is the airline that Pan Am built.


Saw that on a t-shirt once and thought it was cute, and in some ways true.
FIRST ON THE ATLANTIC.....FIRST ON THE PACIFIC.....FIRST IN LATIN AMERICA...FIRST 'ROUND THE WORLD.....PAN AM!!
 
N231YE
Posts: 2620
Joined: Tue Jul 25, 2006 9:24 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 3:52 am

Quoting Jcavinato (Reply 30):
Milesrich's post is fantastic. One more thing I would add is the dominant CEO who grew the company. Juan Trippe was a feisty, dictating, hands on CEO who is/was very common in succesful high growth companies in emerging industries.

Nice point, I failed to mention that. It was Juan Trippe who worked with Boeing to develop the 747, brought PanAm as the first American airline into the jet age, and tried to get into the supersonic age with Boeing's SST (which later fell through), etc...

TWA was almost the same way, Howard Hughes had the same attitude, only Hughes left (lost control?) of his company in the mid 60s; whereas Trippe left circa 1969-early 1970s. While a Hollywood drama, "The Aviator" does greatly portray the rivalry that existed between TWA an Pan Am.
 
N766UA
Posts: 7843
Joined: Thu Jul 29, 1999 3:50 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 3:54 am

Both! PA had very little domestic network pre-deregulation. Thus when it came about they had no feed for their 747s. They couldn't fill their airplanes, they lost money, they sank. That's a really simple way of putting it but it's true.
This Website Censors Me
 
walter747
Posts: 1379
Joined: Sun Oct 22, 2006 9:49 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 4:07 am

so now what airline do you think is the closest to becoming the next pan am

maybe UA
Hussel, Hussel, Husel, Grind, Grind, Grind
 
Tan Flyr
Posts: 1576
Joined: Sat Aug 19, 2000 11:07 pm

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 4:35 am

Quoting Steeler83 (Reply 13):
I mean, the 707 had how many seats, well over 200, like upwards of 220 or 230 seats, and that was the smallest of the 707, L1011, A300, and 747 aircraft!



Quoting Lijnden (Reply 14):
So, I think the direct factors that caused PA to go belly up was the ETOPS, the lack of B757/B767 as a replacement for the B707 and a very poor feeder network

IIRC, PA's Intercontinental 707's had something close to 146 in coach and 24 in first. They also operated a number of "Charter Configured" 707's in a 199 seat set up , again as I recall today. No 707 ever had 220 or so seats.

The ETOPS issue and 757/767 are not directly related. TW developed the idea for ETOPS and worked it out with the FAA in the early/mid 1980's.

PA had every opportunity to order the 757/767 in 1978 when they were offered that summer by Boeing. However, PA had already put their chips on the L-1011-500..A great hi tech (for its time) machine..but another new type and all the costs.

Of course, in hindsight, PA should have kept the DC-10's from NA, maintained them, and they would have made money with them.

As others have noted, perhaps they should have struck a deal with Boeing to trade in a dozen of the first 747's for 12-16 767ER's and 8-10 757's for domestic feeds and Central America / northern Latin America.

The comment about the end of the cold war is interesting also. As soon as the wall came down the IGS was doomed. I guess I was lucky to fly on a couple of those IGS to Tegel before the end.

Glad at least those folks are getting a bit of Holiday shopping money just in time!
 
Magyarorszag
Posts: 1072
Joined: Sun Sep 04, 2005 5:53 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 4:55 am

Quoting TAN FLYR (Reply 36):
IIRC, PA's Intercontinental 707's had something close to 146 in coach and 24 in first. They also operated a number of "Charter Configured" 707's in a 199 seat set up , again as I recall today. No 707 ever had 220 or so seats.

I've searched in "Pan Am - An airline and its aircraft" and it is said that the B707-120 had 143 seats (no mention of how many in which class) and the B707-321C had 135 seats.

On the same book, there's some technical information about the B707 family which says that the B707-300 had a maximum seating capability of 189, and for the -300B that was 202 seats.
 
Tan Flyr
Posts: 1576
Joined: Sat Aug 19, 2000 11:07 pm

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 5:03 am

Quoting Magyarorszag (Reply 37):
I've searched in "Pan Am - An airline and its aircraft" and it is said that the B707-120 had 143 seats (no mention of how many in which class) and the B707-321C had 135 seats.

On the same book, there's some technical information about the B707 family which says that the B707-300 had a maximum seating capability of 189, and for the -300B that was 202 seats.

OK..I was close..No cigar, but close for remembering stuff from the late 70's on their 707's!
 
User avatar
zippyjet
Posts: 5089
Joined: Tue Sep 04, 2001 3:32 pm

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 8:41 am

Quoting Magyarorszag (Reply 31):
Quoting Ualcsr (Reply 17):
Can anyone recommend a good book about the demise of Pan Am; something similar to John Nance's Braniff book, "Splash of Colors"? Thanks in advance.



It's totally fictitious! But, my fellow A-Netter and airline buffs would love this exciting read about the resurgance of a new Pan Am Classic! A little pie in the sky. Sadly there are no plans to reserect what once was. If so, this book by the Aviation expert, lawyer, commercial captain would be the best free advertising and PR to beat the band.

Quoting SLCUT2777 (Reply 21):
Zippyjet: What airline nowadays has the torch been passed to that reminds you and others of what PanAm was once upon a time? Emirates? Singapore? Cathay Pacific?

You could say all three BUT! I'm an aviation nut and sorry to say, I wouldn't know their logo/liveries if I fell off the jetway in front of their birds.
At least stateside in semi-redneck land (Maryland). Even though IAD is 60 miles southwest of me. They as of yet don't have the panache, glamour and name recognition of the "Meatball." They don't advertise on TV, at least South of the Mason Dixon Line. Heck even little itty bitty Friendship Airport had some Pan Am flights including a 747 flight. My first look at the big ass bird.
Saw her first time when I was 13 back in '70 when my sister and me bugged the shit out of my parents to take us to the airport to spot it. Those were interesting days to say the least!
I'm Zippyjet & I approve of this message!
 
charlienorth
Posts: 1054
Joined: Sat Jun 10, 2006 6:24 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 8:47 am

Quoting Walter747 (Reply 35):
so now what airline do you think is the closest to becoming the next pan am

maybe UA

After $190 mil 3rd qtr? Maybe NWA
Work hard fly right..don't understand it
 
steeler83
Posts: 7391
Joined: Sat Feb 25, 2006 2:06 pm

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 8:57 am

Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 18):
It's actually 30-60 or so for the biggest airlines (who operate the 747 at all), but many carriers are phasing some out and not replacing them with more 747s...

Right, and now there's the A380. Does anyone really see this thing selling if airlines arent even buying more 747s to replace existing older ones?

Quoting TAN FLYR (Reply 36):
IIRC, PA's Intercontinental 707's had something close to 146 in coach and 24 in first. They also operated a number of "Charter Configured" 707's in a 199 seat set up , again as I recall today. No 707 ever had 220 or so seats.

Ooops, I was wrong then in thinking that those birds had 200+ seats...

Quoting Charlienorth (Reply 40):
Quoting Walter747 (Reply 35):
so now what airline do you think is the closest to becoming the next pan am

maybe UA

After $190 mil 3rd qtr? Maybe NWA

Ummmm, that could be. How much did they lose for the year now, like 1 billion plus, IIRC correctly regarding another thread on this matter?
Do not bring stranger girt into your room. The stranger girt is dangerous, it will hurt your life.
 
BHMNONREV
Posts: 1209
Joined: Thu Aug 28, 2003 9:17 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 12:34 pm

Quoting Magyarorszag (Reply 37):
Quoting TAN FLYR (Reply 36):
IIRC, PA's Intercontinental 707's had something close to 146 in coach and 24 in first. They also operated a number of "Charter Configured" 707's in a 199 seat set up , again as I recall today. No 707 ever had 220 or so seats.

I've searched in "Pan Am - An airline and its aircraft" and it is said that the B707-120 had 143 seats (no mention of how many in which class) and the B707-321C had 135 seats.

I would guess that is accurate. TWA ran a 16F/129Y configuration on their International 707-331B right up until the end. I don't know how you could ever get 220 seats in a 707. Possibly full Y config with 28-29" pitch, maybe a high-density Japanese version...  eek 
 
Alias1024
Posts: 2233
Joined: Mon Oct 25, 2004 11:13 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 1:16 pm

Quoting Walter747 (Reply 35):
so now what airline do you think is the closest to becoming the next pan am

maybe UA

If we are talking about airlines from the US, I would have to point to Continental. They have the most international focus of any of the majors. Tons of flights to Europe and Latin America, the Pacific network out of Guam, and are working to build up the Far East. Now if they could figure out how to get the glamour that Pan Am had. Delta has been playing catch-up on the European front, but still has a long way to go to catch up in Central America and the Pacific.

That said, I don't think there will ever be another airline like Pan Am. PA was more than an airline. They were the chosen instrument, a symbol of American political power as much as an airline. CO, DL, or another airline might replicate their international network, but never their icon status.
It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems with just potatoes.
 
User avatar
SLCUT2777
Topic Author
Posts: 3407
Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2006 12:17 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 1:24 pm

Quoting Steeler83 (Reply 41):
Quoting Ikramerica (Reply 18):
It's actually 30-60 or so for the biggest airlines (who operate the 747 at all), but many carriers are phasing some out and not replacing them with more 747s...

Right, and now there's the A380. Does anyone really see this thing selling if airlines arent even buying more 747s to replace existing older ones?

Which is my point. I think the A380 could be the downfall of a few airlines who overplay this addition to their fleet. Could Qantas become the next PanAm?
DELTA Air Lines; The Only Way To Fly from Salt Lake City; Let the Western Heritage always be with Delta!
 
DETA737
Posts: 617
Joined: Sat Oct 07, 2000 3:47 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 1:25 pm

I agree with what many people are saying about Pan Am's decision to buy National Airlines. A three-way bidding war with Eastern and Texas International made it so that they overpaid. Within 3 years they ended up dumping most of what they bought anyway. The money spent on National could have been much better spent on creating a domestic route system from scratch.

The airline just kept on having bad luck though. After 1978 more airlines were allowed to fly to Europe. Instead of building up a central hub at Houston, they allowed Texas International/Continental to push them out.

Too many 747s was also a problem. But they ordered these in the days before the 1973 oil embargo. One has to remember that before then Pan Am (and other airlines) could afford to fly 747s on routes that would seem silly today simply because a coach ticket cost to Europe often cost $500 U.S. or more ($2,500 today), and oil was only $3 per barrel ($15 USD today), wages too were much lower, do the math and one can see why Pan Am execs thought that flying round the world 747s was not a problem. The 747SP was mentioned, and I don't think it was a bad choice for Pan Am. It allowed them to fly JFK-NRT non-stop and this was a huge money making route for Pan Am. The same was true for LAX-SYD which they were able to fly non-stop.
 
milesrich
Posts: 1508
Joined: Sun Jul 06, 2003 2:46 am

RE: Did The 747 Or USA Deregulation Kill PanAm?

Thu Nov 02, 2006 3:10 pm

Pan Am had NO domestic routes pre deregulation, inside the lower 48. They did fly to Fairbanks, AL (FAI) from SEA, and to HNL from the West Coast, but they were not allowed to board passengers on these flights in any non west coast cities. And there were restrictions on carrying people to NY on through flights to Europe too. Trippe and his chosen instrument ended up being an instrument of suicide, as TWA and NW provided competition internationally along with every other Foreign Flag Carrier.

One must remember that the glory days of Pan Am, were right after WWII, when JAL, Lufthansa, and other foreign carriers that had schedules that were no more than a dozen or so flights a day system wide.

For example in December of 1955, JAL's entire international schedule was three weekly DC-6B's that operated SFO-HNL-Wake Island-TYO-OKA-HKG. and domestic flights as follows: 1 Daily DC-6B and 1 Daily DC-4 TYO-Sapporo; 3 Daily DC-4's TYO-Osaka, and 3 Daily DC-4's TYO-Fukuoka, 2 of which stopped in Osaka. LH had 5 Weekly L-1049G's from HAM to IDL all of which stopped in SNN, 3 of which stopped in FRA. and of which stopped in DUS.

Sabena had 6 weekly DC-6's that operated IDL-BRU with stops either in SNN or MAN.

SAS ran 3 weekly DC-6B's from LAX and 11 weekly DC-6B's from IDL to CPH/Oslo/Stockholm with intermediate stops in Hamburg or Prestwick, and a sometimes fuel stop at Gander.

Swissair had 5 weekly DC-6B's from IDL to GVA and ZUR via SNN, Man, and/or FRA.

Pan Am probably carried close to 50% of the TransAtlantic Traffic, and the prices they charged guaranteed a profit.