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boacvc10
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old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 12:31 am

Was there an alliance between Thai International and SAS in the 70s/80s? If there was, what were the drivers for the alliance (Northern Europe v. South East Asia) and how effective was it?

I ask as there were family members (a long time ago) involved in the Thai International ops, and I think I had heard about that, but was too junior to get the scope of it. Wanted to know more about that time. What other alliances of that era had a similar global footprint?

I traveled on BOAC (yah, the account name gives it away) and British Airways during that time, so did BA in any of its 70s/80s need to have a partnership with any other airline, or were they larger than others to not care?

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aaway
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 12:47 am

SAS had a long history with Thai International. Matter of fact, SAS and the former Thai Airways Co. joined to form Thai International in 1960. The early days of Thai International had Scandinavians occupying both the C-suite (executives) and the left-hand seat (as pilots) on board aircraft.

Though Thai nationals eventually took over key positions, both TG and SK maintained some form of cooperation, particularly on the operations front.

TGs' first European destination? Copenhagen in 1972.

With regard to an 80s alliance - don't recall specifically an "alliance", per se. Certainly not in the context of what we now consider to be the basis of an alliance. More marketing cooperation whereby each carrier directed some level of resources in the promotion of the other for certain services.
"The greatest mistake you can make in life is to continually be afraid you will make one." - Elbert Hubbard
 
factsonly
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 7:02 am

You can not really call the 1960's - 1970's cooperation between SAS - THAI International an Alliance in the 'current' understanding of an airline partnership.

In the 1960's you had the 'developed' world (North America and Europe) and the 'developing' world (pretty well everywhere else), or worse, people used to call it - the 1st World and the 3rd World.

In those days, several developed nations assisted lesser developed countries in establishing national carriers.

There are many examples:

- SAS assisted THAI international
- TWA assisted Ethiopian Airlines
- KLM assisted Philippine Airlines
- KLM assisted VIASA Venezuela
- BOAC assisted East African Airways

You can see it in both the registration and liveries of some the aircraft:









 
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eta unknown
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 8:09 am

BOAC and later BA had "pooling" revenue sharing agreements with friendly competitors for want of a better term: QF and SA and IIRC AC come to mind.
 
Gemuser
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 8:51 am

eta unknown wrote:
BOAC and later BA had "pooling" revenue sharing agreements with friendly competitors for want of a better term: QF and SA and IIRC AC come to mind.

AI & TE/NZ.

Gemuser
 
Someone83
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 9:06 am

eta unknown wrote:
BOAC and later BA had "pooling" revenue sharing agreements with friendly competitors for want of a better term: QF and SA and IIRC AC come to mind.


Back in the days with "friendly competition" and before deregulations there where many sort of cooperation, revenue share etc between many airlines

From my understanding British Airways and SAS had some sort of revenue share or pooling on their routes between UK and Scandinavia, to take one example
 
johnclipper
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 10:05 am

TW also helped ALIA and Gulf Air. I think Air India too...
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SueD
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 10:32 am

Someone83 wrote:
eta unknown wrote:
BOAC and later BA had "pooling" revenue sharing agreements with friendly competitors for want of a better term: QF and SA and IIRC AC come to mind.


Back in the days with "friendly competition" and before deregulations there where many sort of cooperation, revenue share etc between many airlines

From my understanding British Airways and SAS had some sort of revenue share or pooling on their routes between UK and Scandinavia, to take one example


Pooling pretty much covered ALL the European national carriers and routings.

You could for instance fly Manchester - Copenhagen on a BAC1-11 of BE. DC-9/Caravelle of SAS or Aer Lingus 737 depending on day of the week. You fly Manchester - Milan six days a week on a BAC1-11 of BE yet the same flight also had an Alitalia flight prefix under pooling.

It really wasn’t a matter of friendly it was a policy at governmental levels and with due regard to IATA/ICAO ticketing principles .

Even Aeroflot were in the pool and connected several flights between London//Amsterdam//Zurich and Tokyo over the Moscow and Siberia sharing revenues with JAL/KLM and BA

The London flight existed (albeit with gauge change ) until very recently

There’s were not alliances in the sense of those existing today.

Even on the North Atlantic -Pan Am had agreements with NW and DL with aircraft swaps at key PA terminals seeing Delta and Northwest crossing the ocean with through ticketing .
 
SueD
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 10:47 am

boacvc10 wrote:
Was there an alliance between Thai International and SAS in the 70s/80s? If there was, what were the drivers for the alliance (Northern Europe v. South East Asia) and how effective was it?

I ask as there were family members (a long time ago) involved in the Thai International ops, and I think I had heard about that, but was too junior to get the scope of it. Wanted to know more about that time. What other alliances of that era had a similar global footprint?

I traveled on BOAC (yah, the account name gives it away) and British Airways during that time, so did BA in any of its 70s/80s need to have a partnership with any other airline, or were they larger than others to not care?

BOACVC10


BOAC/BEA and British Airways were pretty two faced within the European pooling arrangements - Just as today they were all for it when it worked in their favour protecting the long haul operations , however would and did fight against elements that jeopardised that fortress and at every opportunity - Blocking foreign carriers long haul desires from UK regional airports for years nay decades - Forcing Aer Lingus to close their fifth freedom operations via Manchester and Birmingham (without raising capacity i might add)
Forcing Sabena off the Manchester - New York run , and for a long time restricting Air Canada operating anywhere other that Prestwick.
 
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Phosphorus
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 11:32 am

SAS and Qantas, if memory serves me, go back a long time. For a while, into the new century, with all the "alliances", it was one of funny "open secrets" that a Star Alliance carrier SAS and Oneworld founding carrier QF actually had reciprocal mileage arrangements, predating alliances, intact. Maybe they still do, I didn't check.

KLM and Northwest had an informal "Wings alliance" later into 1980's over Atlantic.
Also, KLM and Alitalia pooled resources in Europe at some point, but that would probably be more 1990's.
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jhz94
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 12:36 pm

KLM, SAS, Swissair and UTA had a lot of cooperation on the technical side. For examples they co-purchased DC-10 and co-develpped the KSSU galleys. I know UTA joined later and might not have been part of the joint DC-9 acquisition KLM, SAS and Swissair did.
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BealineV953
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 1:19 pm

factsonly wrote:
You can not really call the 1960's - 1970's cooperation between SAS - THAI International an Alliance in the 'current' understanding of an airline partnership.

In the 1960's you had the 'developed' world (North America and Europe) and the 'developing' world (pretty well everywhere else), or worse, people used to call it - the 1st World and the 3rd World.

In those days, several developed nations assisted lesser developed countries in establishing national carriers.

There are many examples:

- SAS assisted THAI international
- TWA assisted Ethiopian Airlines
- KLM assisted Philippine Airlines
- KLM assisted VIASA Venezuela
- BOAC assisted East African Airways



BOAC assisted in the creation and / or development of a number of airlines.
Some were 'BOAC Associated Companies', including:
Aer Lingus
British Caribbean Airways
Cyprus Airways
Iraqi Airways
Nigeria Airways
Malayan Airways
Tasman Empire Airways
British Commonwealth Pacific Airlines (Australia)
and, as mentioned above,
East African Airways
Other subsidiaries included:
Aden Airways
Bahamas Airways
British West Indian Airways
Gulf Aviation (later Gulf Air)
Middle East Airlines

British European Airways also worked closely with a number of airlines including:
Olympic
Air Malta
Gibraltar Airways

A number of those airlines adopted colour schemes based on BOAC's colours, eg Aden Airways, Bahamas Airways, Gulf Aviation.
In a number of cases, those airlines used BOAC or BEA aircraft.
For example, Nigeria Airways used BOAC Britannias and later VC-10s.
Malayan used BOAC Comets.
The Comets used by Olympic were acquired through BEA.
The last Viscount used by Gibraltar Airways (became Gibair and then GB Airways) was owned by British Airways.
Ever since childhood, when I lived within sight of London Airport, I have seldom seen a plane go by and not wished I was on it.”
With apologies to Paul Theroux - ‘The Great Railway Bazaar’
 
PB26
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 1:38 pm

Panair do Brasil had pool and sharing revenues agreements with TAP, Air France, Alitalia and Lufthansa. Varig took all when absorbed PB and, in the Eighties, RG had along them pool services with SAS, JAL, Swissair and BCAL.
Rio and all South America by Panair do Brasil’s jets.
 
BealineV953
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 1:38 pm

SueD wrote:
Someone83 wrote:
eta unknown wrote:
BOAC and later BA had "pooling" revenue sharing agreements with friendly competitors for want of a better term: QF and SA and IIRC AC come to mind.


Back in the days with "friendly competition" and before deregulations there where many sort of cooperation, revenue share etc between many airlines



Pooling pretty much covered ALL the European national carriers and routings.

It really wasn’t a matter of friendly it was a policy at governmental levels and with due regard to IATA/ICAO ticketing principles .



Government to Government 'Air Service Agreements' almost always demanded that airlines entered into revenue pooling agreements.
By insisting on this, Governments protected their 'own' airlines, giving them an opportunity to develop and grow.
Bear in mind that this started in the late 1940 and early 1950s when economies and airlines were fragile.
For example, between the UK and Italy, BEA and Alitalia shared the revenue. The two airlines co-ordinated their schedules. BEA operated the first flight of the day from London to Rome. Alitalia operated the first flight of the day from Rome to London. So, competition was avoided and the two carriers worked together to develop the market.
In time, for most routes when the market had developed co-operation became unnecessary and revenue pooling was ended.
Ever since childhood, when I lived within sight of London Airport, I have seldom seen a plane go by and not wished I was on it.”
With apologies to Paul Theroux - ‘The Great Railway Bazaar’
 
aaway
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 4:14 pm

eta unknown wrote:
BOAC and later BA had "pooling" revenue sharing agreements with friendly competitors for want of a better term: QF and SA and IIRC AC come to mind.


This was the term I was banging my head for. Couldn't recall the phraseology if I'd been offered money. Thanks for the jog.
"The greatest mistake you can make in life is to continually be afraid you will make one." - Elbert Hubbard
 
boacvc10
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 5:19 pm

Thank you all for this recap - I've also often (in visiting/flying as pax different airports worldwide) seen the tails of aircraft and their liveries, and found commonality from time to time. From the above discussion, I realize it might have been because aircraft got "handed down" based upon their owners/partnerships, and also I've worked close to firms involved in law or trading with senior business magnates affiliated with the aviation industry that have a lock on their respective markets, going back decades to the 1950s or 1960s. At the top of the industry (where cash flows are like water streams) it is apparently a small pool of interested parties.

Aside: One day I was fortunate to observe such a process, in the days of telex (mostly, international direct dial services were rare then), a DC-10 had overshot the runway, and I was installing a local area network at the office of the CEO of the local supplier partner {let's not get into who it was} at the very moment when the call came to mobilize a response to the incident - about 5 minutes after it happened. No one had known about it until that point. As an engineer, it was fascinating to see how quickly an international effort was organized and experts flown in with necessary logistics and communication with the local air force crash recovery team. I actually got to go to the incident site, and marvel at the large back end of the DC-10, with its nose wheel and MLG in mud. Aircraft landed long.

[BOACVC10]
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LAXffDUB
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 7:04 pm

I recall BA had an association with UA in the 1980s. Both of their logos were slapped on everything in BA's terminals, including tickets and boarding passes. Joint BA/UA flight numbers would also be used. I seem to remember Concorde was exempted from any co-branding. I don't know how UA reciprocated as I never used them at that time.

There was also a time later when BA did a similar arrangement with USAir.

My memory is a bit fuzzy about the nature of these ventures. Perhaps someone else could fill in the blanks?
 
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Phosphorus
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 8:27 pm

Braniff Concorde and Singapore Airlines Concorde operations come to mind, too, as examples of high levels of coordination between carriers in different countries.

In case of Braniff, there was an actual transfer of title and US registration of Concorde frames, used on US domestic runs. Both Air France and British Airways were "selling" their frames to Braniff, to "buy" them back after IAD-DFW-IAD run was over.

For Singapore run, G-BOAD even graced Singapore Airlines livery on one side.

Similarly, if less excitingly, JAL logo was on Aeroflot frames (Tu-114 first; Il-62 later) on their joint runs from Tokyo to West Europe via USSR.
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Bhoy
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 9:21 pm

LAXffDUB wrote:
I recall BA had an association with UA in the 1980s. Both of their logos were slapped on everything in BA's terminals, including tickets and boarding passes. Joint BA/UA flight numbers would also be used. I seem to remember Concorde was exempted from any co-branding. I don't know how UA reciprocated as I never used them at that time.

There was also a time later when BA did a similar arrangement with USAir.

My memory is a bit fuzzy about the nature of these ventures. Perhaps someone else could fill in the blanks?

USAir were BA's code sharing partner in the States mid 90s, USAir operated 3 762s on behalf of BA in full Landor C/S (but with N registration) for flights from LGW to PIT/PHL/CLT around then.

BA had wanted to do an equity swap, but it ended up going sour around the time they were rebranded to US Airways, and BA instead teamed up with AA to co-found oneworld.
 
schernov
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 11:02 pm

Aeroflot and Panam had joint ops on JFK-SVO-JFK route. That was in the 80s. Subsequently before SU joined Skyteam - there was some sort of rebooking agreement on Jfk-svo flights when sometimes DL 30/31 got consolidated with SU flights depending on volume.
 
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kjeld0d
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Wed May 06, 2020 11:08 pm

factsonly wrote:
people used to call it - the 1st World and the 3rd World.


people still call it that...
 
SueD
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Thu May 07, 2020 5:41 am

LAXffDUB wrote:
I recall BA had an association with UA in the 1980s. Both of their logos were slapped on everything in BA's terminals, including tickets and boarding passes. Joint BA/UA flight numbers would also be used. I seem to remember Concorde was exempted from any co-branding. I don't know how UA reciprocated as I never used them at that time.

There was also a time later when BA did a similar arrangement with USAir.

My memory is a bit fuzzy about the nature of these ventures. Perhaps someone else could fill in the blanks?


It was a small number of interline and timetabled services beyond Chicago in favour of British Airways
 
BealineV953
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Fri May 08, 2020 8:26 am

SueD wrote:
LAXffDUB wrote:
I recall BA had an association with UA in the 1980s. Both of their logos were slapped on everything in BA's terminals, including tickets and boarding passes. Joint BA/UA flight numbers would also be used. I seem to remember Concorde was exempted from any co-branding. I don't know how UA reciprocated as I never used them at that time.

There was also a time later when BA did a similar arrangement with USAir.

My memory is a bit fuzzy about the nature of these ventures. Perhaps someone else could fill in the blanks?


It was a small number of interline and timetabled services beyond Chicago in favour of British Airways


In December 1987 British Airways and United Airlines announced a worldwide marketing partnership. At the time United Airlines did not fly to the UK, and the arrangement gave them a presence in the UK market, with BA selling UA services. British Airways gained access to United’s US domestic network.

In May 1989, as part of the partnership, United moved into the BA terminal at JFK. UA leased 6 gates for thirty years.

In October 1989 BA shareholders approved a 15 per cent investment in United Airlines. However, the bid was withdrawn when other partners in the planned buy-out failed to raise financing.

In 1990 United initiated service from Chicago to Frankfurt and Paris and from Washington to Frankfurt, with Washington to Madrid flights planned for 1991.

In November 1990 United purchased the Pan Am routes to Heathrow (Los Angeles, New York, Washington, San Francisco & Seattle). The deal included the Pan Am routes from Heathrow to Amsterdam, Brussels, Berlin, Hamburg, Munich, Oslo and Helsinki. It also included PA’s Washington to Paris route.

All this put United in the position of competing directly with BA, and United no longer needed to be sold by BA in the UK market. The marketing partnership was ended.

In 2019 United ended service at JFK Terminal 7, bringing to an end that element of the deal.
Ever since childhood, when I lived within sight of London Airport, I have seldom seen a plane go by and not wished I was on it.”
With apologies to Paul Theroux - ‘The Great Railway Bazaar’
 
BealineV953
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Fri May 08, 2020 10:18 am

Bhoy wrote:
LAXffDUB wrote:
I recall BA had an association with UA in the 1980s. Both of their logos were slapped on everything in BA's terminals, including tickets and boarding passes. Joint BA/UA flight numbers would also be used. I don't know how UA reciprocated as I never used them at that time.

There was also a time later when BA did a similar arrangement with USAir.

My memory is a bit fuzzy about the nature of these ventures. Perhaps someone else could fill in the blanks?

USAir were BA's code sharing partner in the States mid 90s, USAir operated 3 762s on behalf of BA in full Landor C/S (but with N registration) for flights from LGW to PIT/PHL/CLT around then.

BA had wanted to do an equity swap, but it ended up going sour around the time they were rebranded to US Airways, and BA instead teamed up with AA to co-found oneworld.


Filling in the blanks:
July 1992: British Airways and USAir announced an alliance. However, the agreement was terminated in December after the US Government indicated the transaction would not be approved without concessions by the UK Government.
January 1993: British Airways and USAir announced a new alliance. The commercial arrangements covered codeshare on USAir flights in the USA, and the launch by BA of three new transatlantic services using aircraft leased from USAir and USAir crews.
BA invested US$300 million in USAir for an initial 19.9 per cent voting interest. The agreement gave BA options over the next five years to invest up to a further US$450 million in preferred shares in USAir in two tranches.
March 1993: The US Government approved the BA alliance with USAir.
April 1993: BA exercised its right to invest a further US$101 million, giving it a 24.6 per cent holding in USAir.
May 1993: BA and US commenced a phased programme of codeshare flights to 38 cities.
June 1993: British Airways launched daily flights between Gatwick and Pittsburgh using USAir B767s in BA livery and staffed by USAir crews in BA uniforms.
October 1994: BA launched similar flights between Gatwick and Baltimore
January 1994: BA launched similar flights between Gatwick and Charlotte
January 1994: The US Department of Transportation approved BA and USAir codesharing to 65 destinations across the USA.
September 1995: USAir announced that it had held preliminary conversations with United Airlines concerning possible strategic relationships up to and including the acquisition of USAir. American Airlines had also been approached, but had no interest.
USAir had lost $3 billion over five years. The airline had sought concessions from its unions in exchange for part ownership but broke off talks in July.
The USAir board, apart from the three BA members, believed that shareholder value would be maximised by selling the loss-making airline.
BA had seen that while it owned 49% of USAir shares and held 24.6% of the voting rights, close to the maximum allowed under US law, this did not give it control of the airline it had heavily invested in.
British Airways said that it would consider a number of options in relation to its investment in USAir and the airline’s future alliance strategy in North America.
November 1995: United Airlines announced it will not pursue the possibility of acquiring USAir.
USAir said it would seek other solutions to its financial problems, including moving ahead on its plans to cut costs and eliminate unprofitable routes.
"Our talks with United, while important, were but one of several long-term strategic alternatives being examined to make USAir consistently profitable”, said Seth E. Schofield, USAir's chairman and chief executive officer.
January 1996: BA confirmed that it would not be exercising its rights to subscribe for additional preference shares in USAir.
April 1996: BA announced a code-sharing agreement with America West, enabling BA passengers to fly on to America West destinations beyond Phoenix.
June 1996: BA and American Airlines announce plans for a broad alliance. The two airlines planned to co-ordinate their activities between Europe and the USA, introduce extensive codesharing across each other’s networks and establish full reciprocity between their frequent flyer programmes.
July 1996: USAir filed a lawsuit at the New York federal district court claiming that the proposed alliance between BA and AA violated the existing agreements USAir has with British Airways. BA said: "USAir did not provide us with a copy of its complaint or discuss it with us before making its announcement today.”
October 1996: USAir serves notice to end its code-share and frequent flyer relationship with BA with effect from 29 March 1997.
December 1996: BA gave notice of its intention to sell all of its shares in USAir, ending the three-year partnership. Bob Ayling, chief executive of BA, said "It would clearly be unwise to pursue an alliance with an unwilling partner."
January 1997: BA announced the resignation from the Board of USAir of its three nominated directors.
January 1997: BA and American Airlines submitted a joint application to the US Department of Transportation, requesting formal approval of an alliance.
May 1997: BA sold its investment in US Airways, realising total proceeds of US$625 million.
December 1997: The New York federal district court threw out the claims in the US Airways lawsuit.
In its original statement explaining the legal action, USAir said its agreement with British Airways "required both parties' best efforts to complete and advance their alliance...”
Presumably the court found that USAir’s earlier flirtation with United was inconsistent with USAir’s obligations under its contracts with BA.
Ever since childhood, when I lived within sight of London Airport, I have seldom seen a plane go by and not wished I was on it.”
With apologies to Paul Theroux - ‘The Great Railway Bazaar’
 
caravellebleue
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Fri May 08, 2020 4:47 pm

jhz94 wrote:
KLM, SAS, Swissair and UTA had a lot of cooperation on the technical side. For examples they co-purchased DC-10 and co-develpped the KSSU galleys. I know UTA joined later and might not have been part of the joint DC-9 acquisition KLM, SAS and Swissair did.

beside the KSSU group which was Douglas/PW client you had the concurrent ATLAS group (Air France, Lufthansa, Iberia, Sabena) which was doing the same with Boeing (B747, B727) / GE
 
factsonly
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Fri May 08, 2020 6:54 pm

caravellebleue wrote:
jhz94 wrote:
KLM, SAS, Swissair and UTA had a lot of cooperation on the technical side. For examples they co-purchased DC-10 and co-develpped the KSSU galleys. I know UTA joined later and might not have been part of the joint DC-9 acquisition KLM, SAS and Swissair did.

beside the KSSU group which was Douglas/PW client you had the concurrent ATLAS group (Air France, Lufthansa, Iberia, Sabena) which was doing the same with Boeing (B747, B727) / GE


Just to expand on the above comments, with some additional information.

In 1968 KLM, SAS, Swissair decided to jointly purchase their first B747 aircraft, which was seen a mighty investment at the time.
In fact, the three airline initially ordered ten B747-100, but swapped this order for the improved B747-200B, once Boeing launched the increased weight variant with P&W engines.
- KLM ordered 6x B747-200B
- SAS ordered 2x B747-200B
- SWR ordered 2x B747-200B

The basic type spec was the same for all three airlines and maintenance was shared among KL and SK.
- KLM - B747 Airframe
- SAS - B747 P&W engines
- SWR - All DC9 heavy maintenance for KL, SK, SR.

The only difference between the B747-200B aircraft of these airlines were the internal furnishings and exterior paint.
Occasionally the three airlines would actually swap aircraft, when maintenance so required.
So one could fly a SAS B747 on a KLM service, etc...

The three airlines purchased a B747 flight simulator together, which was located at AMS and they started joint B747 maintenance training.

UTA joined the cooperation later when the airlines decided to purchase DC10's together, to create KSSU.
In their later B747 orders, the four airlines swapped P&W for GE engines based on operational experience and commonality with the DC10s.
 
LAXffDUB
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Re: old 70s/80s alliance question

Fri May 08, 2020 8:48 pm

Thanks to SueD and BealineV953 for "filling in the blanks"! lol

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