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SpaceshipDC10
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Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Thu May 19, 2022 8:49 pm

I've searched and was surprised not to find a thread about it.

It's been 40 years since Braniff collapsed on May 12th, 1982. It was the first major U.S. airline to loose the battle following deregulation and what a bright airline it was, with its vast fleet of 727s amongst other types.




https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Braniff_I ... al_Airways
 
757223
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Thu May 19, 2022 9:28 pm

As a kid, I remember flying Braniff several times. Their 727's were always nice and who can forget their BAC-111's? That was a strange little airplane, for sure.
 
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cathay747
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Thu May 19, 2022 10:29 pm

OMG...40yrs??? Now I feel old. Exactly one year and a few days later, I flew down to DFW for Sabre training...my first-ever GDS as I was just starting to work for travel agencies, and I remember on arrival being so sad at seeing the still-huge-number of BN 727's scattered all over the ramp of their former terminal.
 
cs03
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Thu May 19, 2022 10:38 pm

Try finding "Splash of Colors" by John J. Nance. It tells the story of Braniff and how it fell apart.
 
TexasAirCorp
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Thu May 19, 2022 10:47 pm

cs03 wrote:
Try finding "Splash of Colors" by John J. Nance. It tells the story of Braniff and how it fell apart.


There’s also a really good article in Texas Monthly that’s still online: https://www.texasmonthly.com/news-polit ... aniff/amp/

Also an episode of Enterprise about how Howard Putnam tried (and failed) to save Braniff: https://youtu.be/2nw4evfi_pU

A truly fascinating story. Rest in peace Braniff.
 
GSPSPOT
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Thu May 19, 2022 11:06 pm

Those were some great times for commercial plane watching, esp at airports with open-air observation decks!! My God, I miss all that so badly that my heart actually hurts.
 
davescj
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Thu May 19, 2022 11:17 pm

I remember being sad at the loss of so many colorful planes. I remember the signs for "Braniff" at airports that had not yet taken down the signs (post liquidation). Then came the re-run...and I was sad to see it go as well. A piece of aviation history that I am glad I remember, but sad to see have gone.
 
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OzarkD9S
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Thu May 19, 2022 11:26 pm

The only time I flew the "real" Braniff was in 1969 when I was 4 years old. PIA-STL-DAL on Ozark then BN DAL-MEX, MEX-ACA (non revs could fly that segment) then ACA-DAL etc...

Don't remember any of it except the ocean in ACA. My first time seeing ANY ocean. BN shut down one day before my 17th birthday. Very bittersweet as an airline brat, even then I was very saddened by the shutdown.
 
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jaybird
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Thu May 19, 2022 11:47 pm

cs03 wrote:
Try finding "Splash of Colors" by John J. Nance. It tells the story of Braniff and how it fell apart.


I wish they would make that as an eBook .. Braniff was an interesting story for sure!
 
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jaybird
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Thu May 19, 2022 11:51 pm

I was working for a tour company in Honolulu the day Braniff shut down - Braniff was one of our contract carriers. Around mid-day we got a call from our sales rep in Dallas - her husband worked for Braniff - and she told us that "it's not public yet - but Braniff is shutting down." We scrambled to rebook everyone to our other contract carriers. The Honolulu-Dallas flight, I believe, was their last scheduled flight. Certainly a unique airline - they don't do airline marketing like that any more.
 
davescj
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 1:35 am

Yes, I believe HNL - Dallas was the last flight, and it took off before the bankruptcy was announced, so it was the last "true" BN flight. I remember reading about FAs seeing planes in DAL that should have been going to South America. I remember reading one story that an FA was told by the CPT to come to the cockpit. He broke the news. Apparently she said "Thank God, I can get another job. I thought you were going to tell me that you were going to put the plane down in the ocean."

PA, BN, EA and others.....the era you embodied is missed.
 
departedflights
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 1:43 am

A look at how quickly Braniff went from their peak to a shell of their former self in just two years...

Braniff's April 27, 1980 route map:
Image

Just two years later.... Braniff's April 25, 1982 route map:
Image
 
sprxUSA
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 1:53 am

....and that 4/80 wasn't even their peak. BN had started and quit many US cities and routes prior to this, post dereg.
 
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TWA772LR
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 2:09 am

Never knew Braniff had that much of an operation in IAH at one time. They really had a big fall in 2 years though. Losing all of Asia and most of Europe. The only additional international services were CCS and Maracaibo.

I worked as a CSA at WN with 2 ladies that were FAs for Braniff. They absolutely loved it.
 
jeffrey1970
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 2:27 am

I wish that I had taken a flight with Braniff.
 
Italianflyer
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 2:50 am

IMHO the weirdest North American experiment that tried was the BOS "hub".
Sending the 747s across the Atlantic with only three domestic spokes (One of which being their biggest hub) seems to defy logic to me.
Also the hopscotch Asian strategy is kind of off. Did they have 5th Freedom rights from SEL to HKG & SIN?? I doubt it.
 
Kiwiandrew
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 3:09 am

I've often wondered whether something of Braniff could've been saved if another airline had come in with a takeover offer before the final collapse.

Braniff's fleet was compatible with UA ( DC8/727/747), and a takeover would've given United a southern presence thirty years earlier than the eventual merger with CO.

Alternatively, DL might've made sense, would the combined DFW strength of BN and DL provided a more effective long term competitor to AA ?

Both scenarios are of course nothing but "what ifs", but I find it interesting to consider what might've been.
 
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NWAROOSTER
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 3:52 am

When Harding Lawrence was head of Braniff he went nuts and over expanded Braniff's route structure with the beginning of of deregulation applying for more routes than Braniff could fly. Just to keep them Braniff needed to fly red eye flights with little or no passengers. That was the beginning of the end of the original Braniff. Northwest applied for about four routes.
Harding Lawrence killed Braniff. :old:
 
Max Q
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 4:51 am

The latest edition of Airways magazine is devoted to Braniff and its history



It’s quite well done, unlike the hatchet job they did on Continental a few years ago by a writer who had a personal problem with that fine airline and an editor who allowed his bias to be published
 
wedgetail737
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 5:35 am

I flew on the 2nd incarnation of Braniff on a couple of occasions. I know the Braniff 2 wasn't the nearly the same as the original Braniff.
 
AAIRLINERS
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 6:38 am

I was hired at my major in 1984 along with many ex-Braniff flight crew. There was never a bad word mentioned about that company. The workers loved it. I don't know if it was true but I often heard that they had 100% load factors and were still losing money. Too many fare wars during that time probably led to their demise. It was just the beginning of thinning out the herd. They had a great reputation but it wasn't enough after the deregulation of 1978. Such a shame that all those excellent airlines are now nothing but a fleeting memory. I doubt we will ever see that again in todays environment. And unless you personally experienced it you would really never know what it once was to travel by air with outstanding service.
 
AAtakeMeAway
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 2:56 pm

Does anyone know why they never served ELP?
 
mga707
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 3:19 pm

AAtakeMeAway wrote:
Does anyone know why they never served ELP?


Prior to December 1978 and the start of deregulation it was because they never had C.A.B. authority to serve ELP. Pre-dereg, ELP was served mainly by AA and CO, both of which had served the airport since the 1930s, with a few flights from FL and TI. In 1977 WN began intra-Texas service, and IIRC TI pulled out completely around that time. Why Harding Lawrence didn't add ELP along with all of the other December '78 new service that BN added, I do not know.
 
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cathay747
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 3:24 pm

davescj wrote:
Yes, I believe HNL - Dallas was the last flight, and it took off before the bankruptcy was announced, so it was the last "true" BN flight. I remember reading about FAs seeing planes in DAL that should have been going to South America. I remember reading one story that an FA was told by the CPT to come to the cockpit. He broke the news. Apparently she said "Thank God, I can get another job. I thought you were going to tell me that you were going to put the plane down in the ocean."

PA, BN, EA and others.....the era you embodied is missed.


Actually, the last scheduled flight with pax that completed its flight was the other way around...DFW-HNL. In the aforementioned book Splash of Colors, he describes it. Cockpit crew received word by company radio about the shutdown mid-flight, with orders to land at LAX IIRC. The Capt. told the crew "no, we've got a plane load of people who've paid good money for a Hawaii vacation and we're taking them there. What are they gonna do, fire me?"

The HNL-DFW was in essence a ferry with the inbound crew returning on it. But it was, IIRC, the last BN airplane flying and to land. All others were on the ground by the time they landed at DFW.

All other flights I believe either did a return-to-field or landed at the closest BN station enroute. I think that's the jist of it. And please anybody correct any of this I may have wrong.
 
RJNUT
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 3:26 pm

my 1st flight ever was 1968 MKC-ORD on BAC111 with hot breakfast and my sister and I got upgraded to 1st class due to in-op tray tables at bulkhead seats. could hardly reach the floor with my feet,lol!
 
superjeff
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 3:39 pm

NWAROOSTER wrote:
When Harding Lawrence was head of Braniff he went nuts and over expanded Braniff's route structure with the beginning of of deregulation applying for more routes than Braniff could fly. Just to keep them Braniff needed to fly red eye flights with little or no passengers. That was the beginning of the end of the original Braniff. Northwest applied for about four routes.
Harding Lawrence killed Braniff. :old:



Not really, IMHO. I worked for Braniff in Dallas from 1972 to mid-1977 A lot of things killed Braniff. If any of them had not happened, Lawrence would have ensured the company's success. However, the PATCO strike, and the Iranian situation caused a recession in the US, including high oil prices, etc. Braniff had a very efficient fleet (all 727-200's in their Domestic/Mexico operations, the DC8-62's (and a few old DC8-50's) for South America, and the 747's for Hawaii and Europe. The thought was that (a) they had to get big to survive, and, also, American had moved their headquarters to DFW, and basicaly overlaid Braniff's route map.

Braniff 2 should have succeeded, except for a corrupt manager who ended up going to jail for a number of things.

Braniff was unique in the industry. I think that the only other airline that came close to their marketing and service was probably Continental (which is not a surprise because Lawrence came from CO). I think personally that Howard Putnam, while a nice guy, didn't understand what he was getting into when he came to Braniff and he was not up to the job.

Don't forget, Braniff was the first deregulation knockout. We hadn't seen anything like that in the U.S. before, and nobody knew how to handle it. Braniff had been in merger exploration with Pan Am and Eastern before they failed, and they probably would have also been a good match for TWA. But, as you know, none of them is still around. They were also trying to reboot as a new division of PSA, but that fell apart as well.

I miss Braniff. They had a lot of firsts, and were a family.
 
superjeff
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 3:40 pm

Italianflyer wrote:
IMHO the weirdest North American experiment that tried was the BOS "hub".
Sending the 747s across the Atlantic with only three domestic spokes (One of which being their biggest hub) seems to defy logic to me.
Also the hopscotch Asian strategy is kind of off. Did they have 5th Freedom rights from SEL to HKG & SIN?? I doubt it.



they did
 
mga707
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 5:02 pm

cathay747 wrote:
davescj wrote:
Yes, I believe HNL - Dallas was the last flight, and it took off before the bankruptcy was announced, so it was the last "true" BN flight. I remember reading about FAs seeing planes in DAL that should have been going to South America. I remember reading one story that an FA was told by the CPT to come to the cockpit. He broke the news. Apparently she said "Thank God, I can get another job. I thought you were going to tell me that you were going to put the plane down in the ocean."

PA, BN, EA and others.....the era you embodied is missed.


Actually, the last scheduled flight with pax that completed its flight was the other way around...DFW-HNL. In the aforementioned book Splash of Colors, he describes it. Cockpit crew received word by company radio about the shutdown mid-flight, with orders to land at LAX IIRC. The Capt. told the crew "no, we've got a plane load of people who've paid good money for a Hawaii vacation and we're taking them there. What are they gonna do, fire me?"

The HNL-DFW was in essence a ferry with the inbound crew returning on it. But it was, IIRC, the last BN airplane flying and to land. All others were on the ground by the time they landed at DFW.

All other flights I believe either did a return-to-field or landed at the closest BN station enroute. I think that's the jist of it. And please anybody correct any of this I may have wrong.


Per the current 'Airways' issue, which is all about Braniff, the last flight with passengers was BN502, HNL-DFW. The issue has a first-hand account of that last flight from former BN Flight Attendant Eugene White, who worked that final DFW-NHL-DFW 'turn', with the overnight stay in HNL. So the last flight with passengers was BN502, HNL-DFW, on May 12-13, 1982. It departed HNL around 6PM local time and arrived at DFW at 6AM CDT, according to the last BN timetable, dated April 25, 1982. From the 'Airways' article: "The passengers on flight 502 from Hawaii to Dallas never had a better flight on any airline in the world, I can assure you of that." (pp 71-72, 'Airways Special Edition Braniff international', May 2022). "We gave away headsets, liquor, and anything else that they asked for."
 
departedflights
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 5:12 pm

NWAROOSTER wrote:
When Harding Lawrence was head of Braniff he went nuts and over expanded Braniff's route structure with the beginning of of deregulation applying for more routes than Braniff could fly. Just to keep them Braniff needed to fly red eye flights with little or no passengers. That was the beginning of the end of the original Braniff. Northwest applied for about four routes.
Harding Lawrence killed Braniff. :old:


superjeff wrote:
Not really, IMHO. I worked for Braniff in Dallas from 1972 to mid-1977 A lot of things killed Braniff. If any of them had not happened, Lawrence would have ensured the company's success. However, the PATCO strike, and the Iranian situation caused a recession in the US, including high oil prices, etc. Braniff had a very efficient fleet (all 727-200's in their Domestic/Mexico operations, the DC8-62's (and a few old DC8-50's) for South America, and the 747's for Hawaii and Europe. The thought was that (a) they had to get big to survive, and, also, American had moved their headquarters to DFW, and basicaly overlaid Braniff's route map.


Since you both brought up Lawrence Harding, I thought I would share this excellent article I accidentally stumbled across a week ago.... It is a lengthy and interesting read from Texas Monthly Magazine's July 1982 issue:

"The Man Who Killed Braniff. Harding Lawrence built Braniff from an obscure regional airline into an international giant. In the process, he destroyed it."

https://www.texasmonthly.com/news-polit ... d-braniff/
 
jmdc861
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 5:35 pm

If there was ever an airline with "style" it was Braniff. My first trip to Hawaii in the very early 70's was on a BN 707-320C in first class from DFW to HNL. When the "stewardesses" served drinks and appetizers they were brought out on a trolley topped by a surfboard. Bottles of liquor, etc. all laid atop the surfboard. That same trip on the return from HNL to DFW there was another BN 707-320C next to our gate performing a MAC charter back to SGN with a bunch of marines who had just completed 2 weeks of R&R. As I passed their gate I could not help but see the look on each and every marine's face. They looked like they were on their way to Hell which many would argue was indeed the case! The end of Braniff was the end of the golden age of air travel.
Last edited by jmdc861 on Fri May 20, 2022 5:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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sunking737
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 5:36 pm

Braniff kind of lives on, the founders of Sun Country all worked for BN @ MSP. Their first 727 (N275AF) was BN NTU ex Air Florida.

If fact a 737-800, N807SY was named "Spirit of Braniff " First 737 bought brand new after SCX Chap 11 when the founders again restarted the company, 2002..
Formed MN Airlines Inc LLC D/B/A.....Sun Country Airlines. I worked for them.
 
TWFlyGuy
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 5:37 pm

While internal issues and decisions were certainly a large reason for their downfall, it didn't help that another airline set up shop at DFW (AA) and Love field was still open with a fledgeling intra-state carrier with low fares not helping either.
 
TexasAirCorp
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 5:57 pm

TWFlyGuy wrote:
While internal issues and decisions were certainly a large reason for their downfall, it didn't help that another airline set up shop at DFW (AA) and Love field was still open with a fledgeling intra-state carrier with low fares not helping either.

That was the final knockout punch. AA almost went to war with Braniff in DFW with very aggressive fare cutting and dumping capacity in Braniff’s few profitable markets. Whilst Lawrence was off squandering his company’s cash, he let his home base be completely trashed.

Love him or hate him, I’m yet to hear an argument that doesn’t suggest Braniff may have lasted longer if Lawrence wasn’t at the helm post-deregulation.
 
SFOThinker
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 6:03 pm

Italianflyer wrote:
IMHO the weirdest North American experiment that tried was the BOS "hub".
Sending the 747s across the Atlantic with only three domestic spokes (One of which being their biggest hub) seems to defy logic to me.

I was living in BOS at the time of the expansion and took a flight from EWR to BOS the first day of the route. It was the latest flight of the day on the route and I was able to make it after a business dinner. As I recall, I was one of 3 passengers on the flight, 727. The FA I chatted with thought the expansion was crazy.
A relative of mine flew on their nonstop BRU to BOS that was downguaged from a 747 to a DC 8 and it, too, was almost empty.
 
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747d10
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 6:14 pm

I flew the Braniff Concorde (BA metal of course) from DFW to IAD in February, 1979. The fare was around $169.00. Braniff pilots and flight attendants. Pretty over the top service. I still have a commemorative tie tack that says “Braniff Concorde” with a tiny Concorde plane on it.
$169.00 well spent. :cloudnine:
 
bob75013
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 8:27 pm

Truth is ( to me at least) BN deserved death. For the last year of it's existence service was absolutely awful. After the airline had grievously wronged me three times, it wronged me one final time on an ORD/LBB connection - stranding others and me at DFW at midnight .4 of us rented a car and drove all night to get back to Lubbock. Shortly after getting back in to the office I told my administrative assistant to NEVER ever book me on Braniff again. I never flew it again, and shortly thereafter it died.
 
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NWAROOSTER
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 9:39 pm

bob75013 wrote:
Truth is ( to me at least) BN deserved death. For the last year of it's existence service was absolutely awful. After the airline had grievously wronged me three times, it wronged me one final time on an ORD/LBB connection - stranding others and me at DFW at midnight .4 of us rented a car and drove all night to get back to Lubbock. Shortly after getting back in to the office I told my administrative assistan t to NEVER ever book me on Braniff again. I never flew it again, and shortly thereafter it died.

Braniff then under Harding Lawrence was in Hospice. Braniff was dying. :old:
 
phugoid1982
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 9:49 pm

747d10 wrote:
I flew the Braniff Concorde (BA metal of course) from DFW to IAD in February, 1979. The fare was around $169.00. Braniff pilots and flight attendants. Pretty over the top service. I still have a commemorative tie tack that says “Braniff Concorde” with a tiny Concorde plane on it.
$169.00 well spent. :cloudnine:


That must've been an incredible experience although slightly disappointing since the route was flown subsonic albeit faster than subsonic types at the time. I bet the Braniff pilots who I read were trained on the Concorde to fly the through the entire flight regime (subsonic to Mach 2) were itching to light the reheats. Fun fact, my father had promised me that if I graduate from college in 3 years he'd use the remaining year of tuition money to send me on Concorde to London. Sadly, he must've forseen the end of Concorde way ahead of me since I finished in summer 04 in 3 years but too late to enjoy my reward. =(
 
mga707
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 9:59 pm

departedflights wrote:

"The Man Who Killed Braniff. Harding Lawrence built Braniff from an obscure regional airline into an international giant. In the process, he destroyed it."

https://www.texasmonthly.com/news-polit ... d-braniff/


Not the first time some article or other has stated that, but it is a misconception. That 'obscure regional airline' had been flying to South America since 1947, and had operated pure jets since 1959. He certainly changed the airline's style and increased their awareness in the public eye, but the majority of their pre-deregulation expansion had taken place before he took over in 1965.
 
global2
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 10:41 pm

The route map surprised me, why would Braniff have several trans Atlantic routes out of BOS?

Apart from that, reading through this thread had me wondering if Braniff would have been a more suitable airline for PanAm to merge with than National. Wasn't NA already loaded with problems by the time PA took over? Or was BN in the same state? Would it have made any difference in the long run?
 
MO11
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 11:23 pm

global2 wrote:
The route map surprised me, why would Braniff have several trans Atlantic routes out of BOS?


In 1979 Braniff was in major expansion mode. It applied all of the foreign authorities it could, and received an exemption to operate the services from Boston.

global2 wrote:
Apart from that, reading through this thread had me wondering if Braniff would have been a more suitable airline for PanAm to merge with than National. Wasn't NA already loaded with problems by the time PA took over? Or was BN in the same state? Would it have made any difference in the long run?


Pan Am wanted to operated domestic flights to feed its international services, not develop a domestic network.
 
BUFJACK10
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Fri May 20, 2022 11:51 pm

I’ve always been curious as to why the original 747 “Big Orange” never received the “Ultra” livery. It maintained the white tail with BI until the end, while all the other 747’s received the Orange Ultra livery which to this day is very distinctive. The Ultra scheme looked fantastic on any aircraft and IMHO would have aged very well..

Does anyone have any insight why Big Orange didn’t get it.
 
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Polot
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Sat May 21, 2022 12:34 am

BUFJACK10 wrote:
I’ve always been curious as to why the original 747 “Big Orange” never received the “Ultra” livery. It maintained the white tail with BI until the end, while all the other 747’s received the Orange Ultra livery which to this day is very distinctive. The Ultra scheme looked fantastic on any aircraft and IMHO would have aged very well..

Does anyone have any insight why Big Orange didn’t get it.

They never got around to repainting it (the plane was only 11 years old when BN folded, and in later years BN was probably trying to conserve cash).

All the other 747s were delivered starting ~7 years after the first 747 when the Ultra livery was then brand new.
 
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eta unknown
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Sat May 21, 2022 1:36 am

MO11 wrote:
Pan Am wanted to operated domestic flights to feed its international services, not develop a domestic network.

First time I ever heard that!
 
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DL_Mech
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Sat May 21, 2022 2:22 am

BUFJACK10 wrote:
I’ve always been curious as to why the original 747 “Big Orange” never received the “Ultra” livery.

Does anyone have any insight why Big Orange didn’t get it.


Big Orange was supposedly one of the highest utilization 747s in the world flying DFW-HNL-DFW. Probably could not afford to take it out of service for a livery change.
 
citationjet
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Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Sat May 21, 2022 2:23 am

mga707 wrote:
Per the current 'Airways' issue, which is all about Braniff, the last flight with passengers was BN502, HNL-DFW. The issue has a first-hand account of that last flight from former BN Flight Attendant Eugene White, who worked that final DFW-NHL-DFW 'turn', with the overnight stay in HNL. So the last flight with passengers was BN502, HNL-DFW, on May 12-13, 1982. It departed HNL around 6PM local time and arrived at DFW at 6AM CDT, according to the last BN timetable, dated April 25, 1982. From the 'Airways' article: "The passengers on flight 502 from Hawaii to Dallas never had a better flight on any airline in the world, I can assure you of that." (pp 71-72, 'Airways Special Edition Braniff international', May 2022). "We gave away headsets, liquor, and anything else that they asked for."


My parents were non-rev passengers on that last Braniff flight. Flight 502 from HNL to DFW, departing HNL May 12, 1982 and landing in DFW on May 13. They were put in First Class, along with the crew that had just brought the plane in from DFW. I still have their boarding passes from that flight.
They knew that BN had declared bankruptcy before they left HNL, and TV crews were at the HNL airport. They landed in DFW just after sunrise, and they had to rent a car to get home to Wichita. That is how his 26 year Braniff career ended.
 
hivue
Posts: 2201
Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2013 2:26 am

Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Sat May 21, 2022 2:37 am

bob75013 wrote:
For the last year of it's existence service was absolutely awful.


I had a job requiring a fair amount of travel during that last year. I always booked Braniff when I could, which was essentially all the time since they flew everywhere (part of their problem, of course). I wanted to do my little bit to help keep the home-town airline alive, and I liked it that the employees seemed to know they had to go a little bit extra on service due to the precarious situation. Sitting at the gate at DEN one night in the 81/82 winter with the flight significantly delayed (this was immediate post-air traffic controllers all being sacked) the door was left open for any late passenger arrivals. The captain was going around passing out blankets to whomever wanted one to ward off the chill.

On May 12, 1982 I had to go to Brownsville in the early afternoon. As I drove out of the airport I watched the blue 727 I came down on heading back to DFW. After it landed it would not leave the ground again for Braniff. Meanwhile I was told I needed to go to Houston the next day instead of back home, and, none the wiser, tried to call Texas International to book from the hotel that night. Lots of busy signals. Almost an hour's worth. Very strange for sure. Airlines needed to have sufficient phone capacity to avoid alienating customers in just this way. Eventually after my umpteenth call they had put up a recorded message: "Due to Braniff Airways ceasing operations we have been experiencing an increased call volume..."
Last edited by hivue on Sat May 21, 2022 2:41 am, edited 1 time in total.
 
hivue
Posts: 2201
Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2013 2:26 am

Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Sat May 21, 2022 2:40 am

Duplicate post.
Last edited by hivue on Sat May 21, 2022 2:41 am, edited 1 time in total.
 
hivue
Posts: 2201
Joined: Tue Feb 26, 2013 2:26 am

Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Sat May 21, 2022 2:41 am

Duplicate post.
 
Italianflyer
Posts: 835
Joined: Sun Nov 11, 2007 3:06 pm

Re: Braniff International 1982 - 2022

Sat May 21, 2022 4:36 am

WOW!! That 'Texas Monthly' article is quite a hit piece. Can you imagine trying to pull 1/20th of those shenanigans before the BoD walks you out the door??
Anyway, back to the topic at hand, I remember reading from several scholars that the airline c-suite mentality was that the Deregulation Act would fail and be repealed in just a couple of years. EA, TW & UA embark on some pretty aggressive expansion plans to try and grab what they could while the getting was good. Unfortunately the awful confluence of fuel price spike, double dip recession and PATCO ATC strike kneecapped any hope of a positive ROI.

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