hawker
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Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Sun May 20, 2007 6:41 am

This question may be an alian concept to many Americans, but in Australia there has been great upset about Qantas being taken over, even though they have not been a government owned airline for many years. Similarly in Britian there is an emotional attachment to BA. Not sure of the situation in Europe although of course various national airlines have already gone belly up.

Maybe it only countries where the citizens like to travel a lot that want a corrresponding reliable link with home?

What do people think?
 
shuggie
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Sun May 20, 2007 6:54 am

The national airline carries the flag of the country and represents them abroad and is seen by the world as a symbol of that nations identity. Most countries **sweeping generalistion coming up** have one major airline that dominates the others abroad and it stands to reason that a nation will want to see that airline succeed, it's like supporting your country's team in The World Cup

This doesn't really apply in the USA where they have 6 massive airlines representing them overseas....



(Just read the reply by Stitch - maybe I need to reconsider Big grin)

[Edited 2007-05-19 23:58:34]
 
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Stitch
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Sun May 20, 2007 6:56 am

Not so alien to us, Hawker. We too went into an uproar at the thought of our favorite US carrier being taken over, even if by another US carrier.

Of course, it's because we worry what would happen to our frequent flier programs, but... Big grin
 
stirling
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Sun May 20, 2007 7:06 am

Quote:
Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Why Do Countries Love The Olympic Games?

Same thing.

What if there was no such thing as the Australian Cricket Team? Or Rugby Team?
What if there was no English Football side?

Identity and Influence man, nothing else. Since apes first walked upright, it has been all about spreading the collective influence of the *Tribe* as far as it will go.
Delete this User
 
Rivet42
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Sun May 20, 2007 10:07 am

It's an emotional attachment to a bygone age, somewhat exploited by ex-state-owned airlines milking the symbolism of their former status. What I mean by that is, for example, BA is privatised in the 80's, but it keeps it's name, it's image, and continues to play the role of flag-carrier, therefore making it difficult for joe public to appreciate that it is now in fact a totally different animal, run solely on behalf of shareholders, and in fear of a bad rap in 'The City', and completely divorced from philosophical notions of national pride. If, however, they had changed their name, and their image, that nationalistic sympolism would be lost, and their true colours would be clear for all to see and understand. And of course they would be crazy to do that!  Smile

Riv'
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UAL747
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Sun May 20, 2007 11:33 am

Quoting Rivet42 (Reply 4):
BA is privatised in the 80's, but it keeps it's name, it's image, and continues to play the role of flag-carrier,

They did away with their image and their name when they introduced the World Tails scheme. What I wouldn't give to see a bunch of triple 7's and 747's flying around in that Landor Livery. TRUELY British.

The new one has a cheap dot.com look to it, a la so many other carriers.

UAL
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flydreamliner
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Sun May 20, 2007 3:33 pm

Well, the United States is very big, we never had a 'national airline,' per se. Back in the day it was PanAm, and to some degree TWA, today we have United, American, and Delta, and I think we'd have a real problem with them getting taken over, especially not by a largely foreign entity. British and American would love to merge, do you think the public and congress would ever let that fly? I don't think so. The Germans would never let a big American, Japanese, Asian, or whoever equity fund buy out Lufthansa? Doubt it.

America is bigger, has more airlines, so instead of having one we cling to, we've got 3, and then some. Everyone here has theirs, largely by geography.
"Let the world change you, and you can change the world"
 
Kevin777
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Sun May 20, 2007 11:26 pm

Quoting FlyDreamliner (Reply 6):
I think we'd have a real problem with them getting taken over, especially not by a largely foreign entity

Agree. Even though the US has no one "true" flag carrier, it's still a major punch in the national pride when big companies - especially airlines - are taken over by foreigners. The same thing goes for other companies of "national heritage and pride", for instance car manufacturers.

For airlines, the national love can be like the love some people have for a football team. Look at the Belgian public, when Sabena went under - a lost World Cup football final couldn't have brought out as many tears as this. Personally, I have much more love for national flag carrier, SAS, than for the Danish football team, that sucks nowadays anyway. The national airline is a country's ambassador and billboard commercial in faraway countries. A national airline flying across the globe no doubt has a large spill-over effect on the marketing of a country - something that might even justify government support to national airlines in many cases.

Even though a national airline does not have its roots in a state-owned airline, I still think the above can be very true - setting aside ownership restrictions, I think many Americans would absolute hate to see an American dream like Southwest be taken ower by some Swiss private equity fund, even though WN has never had any formal national relations.

LUV your national airline!!!

Kevin777  Smile
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bobnwa
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Sun May 20, 2007 11:38 pm

If Brits would hate the idea of BA being taken over by a foreign company, how was Carnival able to take over Cunard . Were they not a symbol of the UK? KL was taken over by a French company with barely a whimper by the Dutch. London Bridge was bought by an Arizona developer and moved there.
 
Rivet42
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 12:20 am

Quoting Bobnwa (Reply 8):
If Brits would hate the idea of BA being taken over by a foreign company, how was Carnival able to take over Cunard . Were they not a symbol of the UK? KL was taken over by a French company with barely a whimper by the Dutch. London Bridge was bought by an Arizona developer and moved there.

Well, I don't think public opinion would have any sway over who 'owns' BA, as it is fully privitised. Having said that, I believe that their articles of association require the majority shareholdings to be British, so they cannot be taken over by a foreign entity. In the end it is such restrictions, along with national ownership laws, that affect foreign takeovers, not public opinion. Of course one may argue that it is public opinion, or fear of it, that shapes those ownership laws, such as in the US, but unless the government of any particular country retains a majority shareholding in a company then public opinion counts for nothing.

I find it rather quaint for people to get emotional over certain national icons, when those 'national' icons are in fact private commercial organisations whose future prosperity and survival may be hindered by antiquated ownership laws. It's no good having national icons that only exist in the past.
I travel, therefore I am.
 
burnsie28
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 12:25 am

Quoting FlyDreamliner (Reply 6):
America is bigger, has more airlines, so instead of having one we cling to, we've got 3, and then some. Everyone here has theirs, largely by geography.

NW is the largest recognized US airline in Asia. So add them to the list. NW is also the largest US airline to Canada. Finally NW is the oldest US airline now.
 
abrelosojos
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 12:27 am

Among other reasons, misplaced national pride, usually prevalent in countries undergoing fundamental identity shifts, questioning their place in the globalized world, or when the airline represents powerful symbol of past glories (however wrong - ex. colonialism).

-A.
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cedarjet
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 1:50 am

Quoting Hawker (Thread starter):
Maybe it only countries where the citizens like to travel a lot that want a corrresponding reliable link with home?

Well I hear that - I only fly BA longhaul (well, going to YYZ next week on Air Transat but BA were nearly £500 and TS were only £238 inc tax from LHR and a longhaul charter from T2 seemed exotic enough to miss out on BA this time, and save a LOT of money). But I love boarding a BA 747 in Los Angeles, Sydney, Toronto, Tokyo, you name it, and (a) I know I'm gonna get home in one piece and on time because I'm in the hands of professionals, and (b) I'm halfway home already, and (c) it's a matter of class and taste. I fly British Airways.
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Ken777
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 2:13 am

There is also an economic factor involved for many countries. The national airline ensures access to the country for those coming in, and ensures flight availability for those who need to travel out of the country.

It's sort of like airports. Dallas had a huge economic upswing after DFW was opened because of the access it provided. Companies moved to Dallas, with DFW being a significant factor, and there was a lot of economic development.

The national airline ensures that a country is not totally left out of economic growth. While this may not apply to the major economic countries of the world it does apply to many counties. One can probably look back 50 years ago at, say, Singapore and see the impact. SQ, in concert with all of the other programs in the economy, worked to slowly build Singapore to the marvel it is today.
 
cedarjet
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 2:55 am

Quoting Ken777 (Reply 13):
One can probably look back 50 years ago at, say, Singapore and see the impact. SQ, in concert with all of the other programs in the economy, worked to slowly build Singapore to the marvel it is today.

This is very true. No other single factor has contributed anywhere near what SQ have, to make Singapore the success story it is today. I mean, come on, it's about the same size as Baltimore. And yet the airline fly daily across the Atlantic and Pacific (arriving in NY from both directions), fly to Africa, all over Europe, you name it.

(Although Singaporeans may love what SQ has done to their island nation, in fact they don't love SQ that much as a customer experience - apparently the cabin crew favour foreigners and the natives get a hard time, I guess because the natives will fly SQ anyway. Something like that. But ask anyone from Singapore what they think of SQ. And take a few paces backwards.)
fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
 
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bwest
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 3:04 am

Quoting Cedarjet (Reply 14):
But ask anyone from Singapore what they think of SQ. And take a few paces backwards.

I just checked with my Singaporean friend. He replied exactly in the way you described he would  Smile  Smile


As for the topic, I guess the posters above got it right, we love our flag carriers because they represent a bit of our homecountry, far away from home. It's national pride. The idea that your country is being represented worldwide and that the moment you step on that plane, you left the strange country you're in and feel a bit at home again. After all, your home carrier will probably have food on board that fits your cuisine, have entertainment that you're familiar with, and the F/A's will speak your language...
I love my Airport Job! :)
 
cedarjet
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 3:37 am

Not wishing to overcrowd the thread, having sung the praises of BA and pointed out how ambivalent Singaporeans are about SQ, but one more thing - while BA make me proud to live in Britain and do a great job, I also like to go somewhere on the flag carrier of the destination sometimes, not so much by flying American to LA (zzz) but Iranair to Tehran for instance is really cool - OK, when I board a BA jet in Tokyo I'm halfway home, but when I board one of those big old Iranair 747s at Heathrow, I'm halfway to Tehran while still at the gate at T3. And it's interesting to see how the people you're going to visit "play airline" (in case you wondered, Iran does it with old-school style and very tidy flying; on the other hand, once was enough on Alitalia - next time I visit Italy I'll revert to post #12 and fly the flag, that is, the Union flag).
fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
 
1stfl94
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 3:43 am

Quoting Hawker (Thread starter):
Maybe it only countries where the citizens like to travel a lot that want a corrresponding reliable link with home?

That's very true. Its really nice when you've been away from home for a long time cause its makes you feel that bit closer. With the US though while you have a lot of airlines you do have 'hometown airlines' if that makes any sense, like Delta if you live in Atlanta or Northwest if your in the Twin Cities I suppose.
 
LHStarAlliance
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 3:46 am

Quoting Hawker (Thread starter):
Similarly in Britian there is an emotional attachment to BA.

Also in Germany , German love their Airline !

Quoting Hawker (Thread starter):
Maybe it only countries where the citizens like to travel a lot that want a corrresponding reliable link with home?

Speaking for LH I think it´s this link with the World ... and most people like to fly ...


Konstantin
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LHStarAlliance
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 4:09 am

Quoting LHStarAlliance (Reply 18):

Though I´ve seen many Germans specially on A.de who to seem great or interesting almost hate LH ...

Pretty strange guys ....

I was there and get bashed because of having LH in my U-Name ...
 Yeah sure  Yeah sure


Konstantin
Boycott The Olympic Games In Beijing !
 
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OA260
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 4:20 am

Quoting Shuggie (Reply 1):
The national airline carries the flag of the country and represents them abroad and is seen by the world as a symbol of that nations identity. Most countries **sweeping generalistion coming up** have one major airline that dominates the others abroad and it stands to reason that a nation will want to see that airline succeed, it's like supporting your country's team in The World Cup

Yeah I agree with that also. Although as time goes on it is changing but historically it was part of your countries pride and joy. I have to say though when I step on a OA plane in LHR it feels like im in Greece already and its familiar. I also agree with another post that some airlines play on this and fleece you with high fares!!! As I said its all changing now.
 
floridaflyboy
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 4:29 am

Quoting 1stfl94 (Reply 17):
With the US though while you have a lot of airlines you do have 'hometown airlines' if that makes any sense, like Delta if you live in Atlanta or Northwest if your in the Twin Cities I suppose.

That's incredibly true. Take American and Continental down in Dallas and Houston. Not only for people who live in the hub cities either. Take some of the smaller cities as well. Down in central Florida, people seem quite loyal to DL, and down in South Florida, people are quite loyal to American. Up here in Montana, Billings people are pretty much split between UA and NW, who seem to be the most consistent links, while people in Butte are very loyal to DL.
Good goes around!
 
maddog888
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 4:43 am

Quoting Cedarjet (Reply 12):
but I love boarding a BA 747 ....because.....[(b) I'm halfway home already,

For me, I find that the reverse is true for the similar reason to your reply 16. Whenever I go on holiday I like to go on one of that countries airlines as it feels like I am on holiday as soon as I board the plane.Whereas if I am on a UK airline the holiday doesn't seem to start until I am out of the airport at the destination.


[quote=Cedarjet,reply=12] (c) it's a matter of class and taste. I fly British Airways.

for class and taste you obviously don't fly BA Y-class - sardines aren't allowed to be treated like that. I will only fly BA in WT+ (or C - on the rare occasions I can afford it.... or when I can find someone else to foot the bill  Wink ).


J
 
pilotaydin
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 4:52 am

national airlines are quite nice, they usually dont cut on budget, and make you feel like you're king....TK is a national airline and we basically are told that we represent the turkish flag overseas, which is why we can't joke about on the PA and make funny announcements etc, and in a way it's cool to be professional, and a rep for your country....
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Motorhussy
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 5:49 am

Other than the obvious emotional reasons, brand loyalty to your nation's flag-carrier, literally flying-the-flag, supporting the home side etc, there are very good rational reasons for doing so. Your national carrier will provide crew that speak your language in your idiom/accent, cuisine and wines etc that are comforting and familiar, provide knowledge of home (how the All Blacks pre World Cup training is going) so there is a plethora of reasons for their continued support.

Many national airlines (most in the economically affluent parts of the world) are now privatised, but still carry the heritage, legacy and support of their previous national status and this is mostly because they continue to specialise in the service of one particular market. In our case, NZ specialises in getting people to and from New Zealand, they are responsible for bringing a helluva lot of foreign exchange into our economy and they give foreigners a good taste of New Zealand hospitality before they land on our shores (and allows Kiwis to feel at home before they actually get there).

Regards
MH
come visit the south pacific
 
EFHK
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 6:39 am

After spending two weeks in Australia, it just made me so proud to see Finnair signs at Singapore airport. There I was on the other side of the world and knew that I'll be boarding an aircraft that'll be just like home.

I know, it's silly, but for a relatively small country like Finland the national airline is really something to be proud of. Not least because of its success.
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aerokiwi
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 2:18 pm

I'd put it down to an ingrained sense of insecurity within a country's/regions's collective psyche. I' ve also been guilty of it in the past (with Air NZ), but having grown up a little and realised that these really are just companies trying to make a buck, I couldn't care less who owns what and what colours are on the tail.

As long as the consumer is protected through competition and safety/reliability standards, I wouldn't care if it was Alaska Airlines, Asiana, LAN or TAAG Angola flying from AKL to CHC or AKL to KIX. As long as there's competition and it's safe, no worries.
 
abrelosojos
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 2:49 pm

Quoting Aerokiwi (Reply 26):
I'd put it down to an ingrained sense of insecurity within a country's/regions's collective psyche. I' ve also been guilty of it in the past (with Air NZ), but having grown up a little and realised that these really are just companies trying to make a buck, I couldn't care less who owns what and what colours are on the tail.

As long as the consumer is protected through competition and safety/reliability standards, I wouldn't care if it was Alaska Airlines, Asiana, LAN or TAAG Angola flying from AKL to CHC or AKL to KIX. As long as there's competition and it's safe, no worries.

= Very good analysis. Read my post above.

Cheers,
A.
Live, and let live.
 
Caymanair
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 2:49 pm

National carriers are also a very big security device and an insurance policy in many cases. Take Cayman for example (i know that one best). Cayman Airways has the following practical uses:

1) It provides employment for hundreds of Caymanians in the field of aviation. If not for Cayman Airways, the Caymanians would be very limited in aviation related jobs to do in Cayman and would have to go overseas. It also provides jobs for Caymanians (particularly students) who are studying overseas.

2) It brings in tourists and opens new markets. It also provides services for business travellers. KX helpd us to develop new markets for out tourism product such as BOS and ORD and provides important links for Caymanians such as TPA and HAV. Quite frankly, GCM has the amount of daily flights it does because of KX. Many of the markets now served by foreign carriers were built from the ground up by KX. K has been looking at assisting the country develop DEN as a market for tourists....many divers live in DEN and the surrounding areas.

3) It is a massive insurance policy. Foregin cariers, especially the American ones, pick up and vacate Cayman as soon as trouble is brewing. When Hurricane Ivan struck, KX provided important relief and evacuation services for weeks when other carriers would not fly and evacuated thousands of people free of cost when we had no running water, electricty, food, or shelter. It keeps the whelels of industry rolling.

4) It manages the price of travel. If not for KX, competition would be basically non existant. KX has a heavy influence on the price of travel to keep it both high enough to attract higher net worth visitor and to ensure Caymanians are not overpaying. It also ensures that travel to and from the sister islands is possible and economicall viable, which is good for the national economy.

5) It ensures that critical (but not nessecaril profitable) routes are served effectvely. Cayman Brac and Little Cayman are importnt to us...but be realistic. No company in search of the dollars is going to fly there.

6) We are a small country and therefore KX's losses are outstripped by the economic benfits they provide. KX is responsible for about 12% of GDP.

Soooo.....I'm assuming that these benefits are found in various forms in other cases. Nowadays they may not be applicable to big countries but they certainly were at some point. This plus what everyone has said about national pride and sentiment count.
 
ktachiya
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 3:44 pm

Well I can't really say in the instance of the US because there are so many large carriers but I think in Japan, a majorty of the people do have the image that JL is still the flag carrier (it was for a long time until the 1980's).

As a matter of fact, I can only speak up for myself but when I lived in Vancouver for about six years, I always used to fly JL in and out of YVR although there was a direct AC service to KIX (my final destination). I just always did it because from the moment you were in the plane, I felt like I was back in my homeland.

I know that probably a majority of Japanese would now prefer NH compared to JL, but JL is still seen in many airports where NH isn't. YVR, MEX, GRU, AMS to name a few.
Flown on: DC-10-30, B747-200B, B747-300, B747-300SR, B747-400, B747-400D, B767-300, B777-200, B777-200ER, B777-300
 
TruemanQLD
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 5:02 pm

QANTAS has been the Australian identity for many years and to see it sold off to you Americans would be a worst nightmare for most Australians. It has also been around since 1920 and has always provided Australians with jobs and has almost always been in high financial success. May I add has never had a fatal accident. The USA has 6 major airlines (Delta, American, North West, US Airways, United and Continental) and look at how much financial success they are having. All of which have had atleast 3 fatal crashes. It would be an awful shame to sell QANTAS to a foreign company. QANTAS is also one of the smartest companies in the world developing JQ and having a striving force against VB and soon to be TR. QANTAS is one of Australias last non-foreign owned company with even Vegemite being American owned. Im sure the British feel the same about BA having rivaled Easy Jet and Virgin Atlantic to name just a few. QANTAS is Australias airline not the big americans
 
Kevin777
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 6:41 pm

Quoting EFHK (Reply 25):
After spending two weeks in Australia, it just made me so proud to see Finnair signs at Singapore airport. There I was on the other side of the world and knew that I'll be boarding an aircraft that'll be just like home.

I know, it's silly, but for a relatively small country like Finland the national airline is really something to be proud of.

And you should be proud, too..

I feel the same way about, for instance, SAS - but also other airlines in some cases. I remember in the good old days, boarding a Maersk Air plane after a holiday somewhere in Greece, with your Danish newspapers, Danish speaking cabin crew, little paintings of Copenhagen on the walls, maybe the odd picture of the Royal family and open sandwiches with heering!...

I even felt some of the same when iI flew VS BOM-LHR back in December, after four months in India. Although I'm not the least bit English, you can always get a bit anglofile sometimes!.. and seeing and boarding the beautiful VS 340 was heart warming..

Kevin777  Smile
"I was waiting for you at DFW, but you must have been in LUV" CPH-HAM-CPH CR9
 
standby87
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 8:50 pm

My Economics Lecturer taught us this and I still remember it:

"When a new country breaks free of Colonial rule, the first thing it does is build an army.
The 2nd thing it does is form a National Airline - and it buys either Boeing or Tupolev."

I think you can see how old I am  Wink
 
Motorhussy
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 9:00 pm

Quoting Standby87 (Reply 32):
"When a new country breaks free of Colonial rule, the first thing it does is build an army.
The 2nd thing it does is form a National Airline - and it buys either Boeing or Tupolev."

And these days it's breaking free of post colonial tyrannical rule and the options have become Boeing or Airbus which in turn represent the contemporary empires.

Interestingly, when Samoa (then Western Samoa) gained independence from its colonial power New Zealand in 1962, they chose to not have an army. They've never needed one since, however they did succumb to the airline.

Regards
MH
come visit the south pacific
 
andaman
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 9:10 pm

Quoting EFHK (Reply 25):
After spending two weeks in Australia, it just made me so proud to see Finnair signs at Singapore airport. There I was on the other side of the world and knew that I'll be boarding an aircraft that'll be just like home.

I know, it's silly, but for a relatively small country like finland the national airline is really something to be proud of. Not least because of its success.

I have experienced the same. Personally always not the biggest fan of Finnair, but it was so nice to see their cool "Panda" tv commercial on TV in Hong Kong last winter.



And so true, coming from a small country it's always nice to see Finnish brands abroad, like at airports: KONE escalators & elevators, Finlandia vodka - and hard to avoid NOKIA of course  Wink
Chinese cookie in SFO: "You're doomed to a life of forever travelling abroad and to be able to afford it!"
 
WSOY
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 10:04 pm

Quoting Andaman (Reply 34):
Finlandia vodka

Sorry, but the trade mark owner is presently the U.S. giant Brown-Forman. http://www.brown-forman.com/brands/
"Nukkuessa tulee nälkä" (Nipsu)
 
eham
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 10:16 pm

We as Dutch already sold our national airline to Air France ...  Smile
 
Rivet42
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Mon May 21, 2007 10:32 pm

How odd to argue that 'national' airlines somehow provide better economic growth, more jobs and more inward tourism that independent airlines! I think an economist would argue that none of those things depend upon who owns and runs the airlines - on the contrary, they are likely to be more efficient, thus more profitable and more successful if they are entirely privately owned. The fact that they might somehow represent nationhood is simpy an emotional response to very clever marketing. Yes, of course it's nice to see BA in a far-flung airport, and to get that sense of 'britishness', but I just as often find myself fighting against such an irrational response to an 'image'. I love flying on all airlines, regardless of whose culture they represent - indeed, I try to avoid BA simply because I want to experience how other airlines portray their own culture. It's nothing against BA, but I know what I'm going to get with them, and that's the safe and boring option...  Smile
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Ken777
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Tue May 22, 2007 1:53 am

Quoting Rivet42 (Reply 37):
I think an economist would argue that none of those things depend upon who owns and runs the airlines - on the contrary, they are likely to be more efficient, thus more profitable and more successful if they are entirely privately owned.

Sometimes pure, isolated economic efficiencies are not the goal, as noted by Caymanair's post on KX. Each country determines what is in their best interests (or best political interests for the politicians) and goes from there.

While I have never worked in government (except for a stint in the Navy) I've seem a lot of stupidity and incompetence in private industry over almost 40 years and I don't subscribe that a private business is automatically less incompetent than a government. Employees in both government jobs and in private industry are pretty much the same - they all put their pants on one leg at a time.
 
andaman
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Tue May 22, 2007 1:57 am

Quoting WSOY (Reply 35):

Sorry, but the trade mark owner is presently the U.S. giant Brown-Forman. http://www.brown-forman.com/brands/

Yes I know, but it's still made in Finland  Wink And NOKIA shareholders are mainly outside Finland.
Chinese cookie in SFO: "You're doomed to a life of forever travelling abroad and to be able to afford it!"
 
RICARIZA
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Tue May 22, 2007 2:04 am

I completely share that feeling. I want Avianca to succeed and as many of you have said, it represents the country, it is like a big an beautiful ambassador..
Just check what AV did to the tail of one of its 767's, to be part of a government campaign:

Big version: Width: 1024 Height: 780 File size: 292kb


Big version: Width: 324 Height: 400 File size: 15kb
I miss ACES, I am proud of AVIANCA & I am loyal to AMERICAN
 
Viscount724
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Tue May 22, 2007 3:55 am

Quoting TruemanQLD (Reply 30):
QANTAS has been the Australian identity for many years and to see it sold off to you Americans would be a worst nightmare for most Australians. It has also been around since 1920 and has always provided Australians with jobs and has almost always been in high financial success. May I add has never had a fatal accident.

You mean that QF has never had a fatal accident involving a JET aircraft. QF had several fatal accidents in their earlier years involving piston engine aircraft. That fact is often overlooked when QF's safety record is discussed.
 
Caymanair
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Tue May 22, 2007 4:08 am

Quoting Rivet42 (Reply 37):
How odd to argue that 'national' airlines somehow provide better economic growth, more jobs and more inward tourism that independent airlines! I think an economist would argue that none of those things depend upon who owns and runs the airlines - on the contrary, they are likely to be more efficient, thus more profitable and more successful if they are entirely privately owned.

However what I was saying is that in some cases (like Cayman) there would be no private interests to take the position of public ones. Also, private enterprise is not automatically more efficient or better suited for specific goals. How many private companies would chose to serve an isolated tiny island with 150 residents? Few I would suppose.
 
LGAtoIND
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Tue May 22, 2007 4:17 am

Here are some thoughts from an American point of view:

1. Foreigners tend to be more loyal than Americans to their "flag carriers," or so it seems. Myself, and many people I know, have no preference to an American carrier, but will book international travel on whoever is the cheapest ( I am a poor college student so I don't look for things like who has the best flat reclining business seat or anything like that). Also, I have never gotten the "warm" feeling of being home when I have entered an American carrier's aircraft overseas. Maybe it is because we don't have one single flag carrier, or the fact that American culture is so predominant around the world that in some big cities you can feel like you are in the U.S. without actually being there. Now maybe if I saw a UA 777 in Vietnam I would feel more at home, but I have only been to the more "run of the mill" destinations like London, Paris, Amsterdam, Rome, Dublin, etc.

2. I will often feel the reverse, though. I think it is neat to leave the U.S. on an airline like AF, because from the second you board the plane, you truly feel immersed in French culture.

3. I am curious to know if foreigners have a certain airline that they consider to be America's "flag carrier." I would guess AA, maybe UA or DL, depending on what part of the world you are from. Any thoughts.
 
flydreamliner
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Tue May 22, 2007 4:28 am

Quoting Burnsie28 (Reply 10):
Quoting FlyDreamliner (Reply 6):
America is bigger, has more airlines, so instead of having one we cling to, we've got 3, and then some. Everyone here has theirs, largely by geography.

NW is the largest recognized US airline in Asia. So add them to the list. NW is also the largest US airline to Canada. Finally NW is the oldest US airline now.

NW may be the oldest, and I believe UA has again gotten out ahead of it in terms of Asian service. To most Americans, I think UA is recognized more than NW as the US carrier to the pacific, maybe just because of its service to AUS, and its greater number of point to points (NW will fly you to Japan, with the exception of 2 flights, NRT). NW's other problem is that is presence tends to steer clear of the big cities, hubs in Memphis, Detroit, and Minneapolis, sure NW is the whole show in those towns, but with AA's hubs at ORD, JFK, MIA, and DFW, or UA's at IAD, ORD, DEN, LAX, and SFO, they get more visibility.

NW is a cool airline, but I don't think many people would place them in the top two or even three as America's flag carrier.

Quoting Ktachiya (Reply 29):
Well I can't really say in the instance of the US because there are so many large carriers but I think in Japan, a majorty of the people do have the image that JL is still the flag carrier (it was for a long time until the 1980's).

Japan has a situation somewhat like the US, having two 'flag carriers,' ANA and JAL. South Korea is also like this with Korean and Asiana (though I'm fairly certain most Koreans view Korean as their flag carriers, like nearly all Britons call British their flag carrier.) Brazil has just seen theirs change as long time flag carrier VARIG imploded, leaving TAM as their number one international airline.

Quoting Eham (Reply 36):
We as Dutch already sold our national airline to Air France ... Smile

How is that working out for you... besides those lovely 10 abreast 777-300ER's? I think it says a lot about how open minded a country is if they are willing to allow their flag carrier (even one whose name translates to something like Royal Air Line) to be sold to a foreign entity. I would imagine if our laws were ever liberalized in the US, and foreigners could own our airlines, you might see one of the smaller airlines, like NW, US, or even CO get bought by a foreigner, but I can't imagine the big 3 of United, American, and Delta being taken out of United States hands.
"Let the world change you, and you can change the world"
 
bobnwa
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Tue May 22, 2007 5:16 am

Quoting FlyDreamliner (Reply 44):
but I can't imagine the big 3 of United, American, and Delta being taken out of United States hands.

I think if the foreign ownership laws were relaxed, BA would buy AA in a heartbeat.
 
Avianca
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Tue May 22, 2007 10:06 am

Quoting LHStarAlliance (Reply 19):
Though I´ve seen many Germans specially on A.de who to seem great or interesting almost hate LH ...

Pretty strange guys ....

not only on a.de even moderators on airliners.net  flamed 
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SwissA330
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RE: Why Do Some Countries Love National Airlines?

Tue May 22, 2007 3:36 pm

Quoting Eham (Reply 36):
We as Dutch already sold our national airline to Air France ... Smile

Same over here in Switzerland. Sad

Funny thing how perception of the national airline changed!!
Everybody loved Swissair, and there was great uproar when they went bankrupt. There were massive demonstrations, and solidarity with the airline and its employees were huge.
So when Swiss was started, the people of switzerland tried to see old Swissair in it.

Then, LH came and took them over... I think Swiss lost it's 'flag carrier' status at that point in the heart of many swiss. Swiss was then just another Airline flying from Zurich; they lost their customer base in BSL and GVA (mostly to EZJ).

So what they try to do now is to re-establish their status as flag carrier with large 'swiss-made' advertisement campaigns, and by gaining back customer share in BSL and GVA with additional Services.


They are still just a german airline though... BTW, they are the cheapest german airline, mostly cheaper than Air Berlin  Smile
swissair/+/ we care