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juliuswong
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"The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:03 am

Following the collapse of Primera Air, whose fleet of seven aircraft served 41 destinations, we look back at other notable airline failures.

Monarch
2017
The collapse of Monarch last year sparked Britain's biggest ever peacetime repatriation. Around 100,000 of its passengers were abroad on October 2, when it ceased trading, while a further 750,000 people had paid for flights they were no longer able to take. It was by far the biggest UK airline failure in history.

Until its collapse, Monarch served 43 destinations with a fleet of 35 aircraft. It flew 5.43 million passengers and employed 2,300 people in 2016, making it Europe's 26th largest airline (it carried more than 7 million in 2014).

Air Berlin
2017
Just one week after the collapse of Monarch, Air Berlin, Germany’s second largest carrier and Europe’s 10th biggest overall (it flew 28.9m passengers in 2016), announced its closure. It had declared bankruptcy two months before after years of losses and the decision of its biggest shareholder, Etihad, to cease bankrolling it.

At the time John Grant, an aviation analyst, suggested more failures could be on the cards: "The competitive environment has become increasingly challenging for many airlines, with many established legacy airlines launching low-cost long-haul services and the continual growth in services from airlines such as easyJet, Ryanair and Norwegian. This has resulted in many mid-market carriers with relatively high cost bases being continually squeezed to a point of failure.

"There are perhaps too many airlines in Europe today relative to the size of the market, with too many struggling to keep market share. In the United States, five major airlines provide some 80 per cent plus of scheduled capacity and that may be where the European market will head over time."

Transaero
2014
Another of the biggest non-UK airlines to cease trading in recent years was Transaero, a Russian carrier with a fleet of 97 and 156 points on its route map. It carried 13.2 million passengers in 2014 but went under the following year after accumulating 3.9bn euros of debt.

FlyGlobespan
2009
The last UK carrier to cease trading before Monarch was Citywing, a virtual airline that operated under charter until March 2017, with a base at Isle of Man Airport, but the last major failure was FlyGlobespan, back in 2009. Based in Edinburgh, it had a fleet of nine aircraft, serving 24 destinations, and flew just over 2 million annual passengers at its height. When it went under, it had just 4,400 customers overseas, and 117,000 forward bookings – small fry compared to Monarch.

XL Airways
2008
In September 2008, XL Airways ceased trading after 14 years in business. It had a fleet of 18 aircraft serving more than 50 destinations, and carried 2.3 million passengers in 2007, but it collapsed – along with the other brands in the XL Leisure group – due to rising fuel prices (crude oil hit an all-time record of $147 a barrel that summer) and a growing global financial crisis. Around 85,000 holidaymakers were stuck overseas, and a further 200,000 had their bookings cancelled.

Zoom Airlines
2008
Founded in 2002, Zoom largely operated flights between Britain and North America with a small fleet of three aircraft. Unable to pay its fuel bills, it ceased trading in August 2008, leaving 900 passengers stranded on either side of the Atlantic. Its failure left 4,500 stranded abroad, while 60,000 forward bookings were lost.

Silverjet
2008
Business-class carrier launched in 2006, billed as the “world’s first carbon-neutral airline”. Based in Luton, offering routes to Newark and Dubai, it only survived for two years, and its fleet never grew beyond three aircraft.

Full article: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/list ... -all-time/

2018 has seen below airlines folded up:
Primera
Skywork
JetGo
NextJet
Nature Air
Latin American Wings
Pawa Dominica
Polar Airlines
- Life is a journey, travel it well -
 
WN732
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:07 am

MaxJet has to be up there.
 
Atlwarrior
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:13 am

I think Eastern Airlines top all of those.
 
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FA9295
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:26 am

Alitalia is currently headed in this exact direction.
Last edited by FA9295 on Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:28 am, edited 1 time in total.
 
olddominion727
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:26 am

PanAm, Braniff, Aloha, British Caledonian, PSA, AirCal, Continental, America West, Northwest, TWA, Eastern, Western, World Airways, Ansett of Australia, Air Inter, Transamerica, CPAir, Canadian International, MorrisAir, Mexicana
 
olddominion727
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:27 am

PanAm, Braniff, Aloha, British Caledonian, PSA, AirCal, Continental, America West, Northwest, TWA, Eastern, Western, World Airways, Ansett of Australia, Air Inter, Transamerica, CPAir, Canadian International, MorrisAir, Mexicana
 
Bricktop
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:30 am

The key quote

"There are perhaps too many airlines in Europe today relative to the size of the market, with too many struggling to keep market share. In the United States, five major airlines provide some 80 per cent plus of scheduled capacity and that may be where the European market will head over time."

It's heading that way with the 3 big groups anyway. Only nationalist vanity will keep some labels open. There will be more consolidation, and I think in a decade and possibly sooner you'll see the disappearance of low cost carriers in long haul. It will ultimately depend on how the competition authorities decide to put their thumb on the scale.
 
olddominion727
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:32 am

Western Pacific, National Airlines, Piedmont, Pride Air, MuseAir, Transstar, TexasAir, Air Floria, New York Air, Tower Air, People's Express, Southern Airways, Ozark Airlines, Jet America, Wein Air Alaska, Southern Airways, WestAir, MarkAir, Virgin America
 
olddominion727
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:39 am

Continental Lite, Continental West, Kiwi, Ted, North Central, Republic, Hughes Air West, Carnival Air, MGM GrandAir, HootersAir, American Trans Air, Midwest Express, the first Frontier, AeroCalifornia, AeroCancun... Lots of Airlines, that's all I can think of
 
olddominion727
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:43 am

Independence Air and MetroJet, WardAir Canada, Allegheny, UTA, AOM, Sabena, Interflug, CityBird... sorry a few more popped in.
 
mga707
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:49 am

Mergers are not 'airline failures'. The majority of the former carriers listed above by olddominion727 disappeared due to merger, not failure.
 
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Momo1435
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:57 am

Baltia Air Lines, no explanation needed.
 
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neomax
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:59 am

As is mentioned above, a merger is the literal opposite of a complete failure, and at least half of the ones mentioned are mergers.

Kingfisher is a good example of one of the biggest airline failures of all time. The founder Vijay Mallya, once known as the "King of Good Times" has now fled to London and is in hiding as the Indian gov't wants to extradite him for charges of fraud.
 
oldannyboy
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 7:52 am

olddominion727 wrote:
PanAm, Braniff, Aloha, British Caledonian, PSA, AirCal, Continental, America West, Northwest, TWA, Eastern, Western, World Airways, Ansett of Australia, Air Inter, Transamerica, CPAir, Canadian International, MorrisAir, Mexicana



Wait, stop, stop..you are confusing mergers/acquisitions with bankruptcies...
 
Sheridan125
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 7:54 am

British Caledonian did not fail. It wasn't sold to British Airways in 1988 for a handsome price well above its balance sheet value. Other airlines in particular SAS when interested in acquiring it at the time.
 
oldannyboy
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 7:55 am

Court Line was a pretty spectacular one... that left thousands of travelers stranded around the Mediterranean beaches...
 
kaitak
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 8:28 am

FA9295 wrote:
Alitalia is currently headed in this exact direction.


Alitalia has been heading in this direction for years!

Looking back, the one I always remember was Braniff, back in 1982; then, of course, Pan Am, then Swissair, Sabena and Ansett, in 2001. There were of course, many more, but these always stand out to me, as great names which have disappeared.

Of airlines now flying, I would think Wow would be the closest to this fate. Hope not, but this winter will be very difficult for them.
 
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LAX772LR
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 8:29 am

juliuswong wrote:
but it collapsed – along with the other brands in the XL Leisure group

Not completely accurate... though XL France was purchased by Straumur, it continues to operate under XL branding.
I myself, suspect a more prosaic motive... ~Thranduil
 
sholmes
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 8:38 am

kaitak wrote:
FA9295 wrote:
Alitalia is currently headed in this exact direction.

Alitalia has been heading in this direction for years!

Alitalia would have been and would be the biggest airline failure of all times ... if only AZ were allowed to fail: it is now at the third (or fourth ?) bankruptcy but every time it has been saved by the Italian state (and the current Italian government is openly talking of re-nationalising AZ: straight back to the 70s).
 
oldannyboy
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 8:50 am

sholmes wrote:
kaitak wrote:
FA9295 wrote:
Alitalia is currently headed in this exact direction.

Alitalia has been heading in this direction for years!

Alitalia would have been and would be the biggest airline failure of all times ... if only AZ were allowed to fail: it is now at the third (or fourth ?) bankruptcy but every time it has been saved by the Italian state (and the current Italian government is openly talking of re-nationalising AZ: straight back to the 70s).


Indeed. Ain't gonna happen. Italian taxpayers will keep on paying for the privilege of having their National flag carrier... :wave:
 
oldannyboy
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 8:51 am

FA9295 wrote:
Alitalia is currently headed in this exact direction.


Sorry, but no, you really have no idea how things work in Rome! Ain't gonna happen!

We can keep talking ad nauseam whether it's right or wrong, whether a state (read: taxpayers) should forage an airline to keep it afloat, etc.. but fact is, no Italian government will ever let AZ fold. Make peace with that.
 
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vhtje
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:00 am

sholmes wrote:
Alitalia would have been and would be the biggest airline failure of all times ... if only AZ were allowed to fail: it is now at the third (or fourth ?) bankruptcy but every time it has been saved by the Italian state (and the current Italian government is openly talking of re-nationalising AZ: straight back to the 70s).


Who actually owns AZ now? It isn't exactly clear on their website. I would have thought that with the money the Government has already poured in propping AZ up, this would have diluted the CAI ownership, so that the Government held some of the company already?
I only turn left when boarding aircraft. Well, mostly. All right, sometimes. OH OKAY - rarely.
 
TC957
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:05 am

No one has mentioned Phuket Air and Oasis Hong Kong yet !
Both tried as a long-haul LCC and soon failed.
 
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capshandler
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:10 am

What about the big legacy airlines that survived thanks to public constant bailouts... List is long but (not) distinguished.
 
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neomax
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:18 am

To be honest, it's probably best if AZ didn't fail. People on here take airline collapses way too lightly; they're gigantic companies that have routes to all kinds of places which requires tons of agreements and paperwork worth years in one of the most heavily regulated and difficult industries in which to operate, and that's to say nothing about the well-know and established reputation they've built up in that time. You can't really compare AB to AZ because AB isn't the flag carrier of Germany. You better believe Germany would NEVER let LH go under because they are the flag carrier, not AB. Italy is gonna do what it has to do to keep AZ alive, because the cost of funding it is easily outweighed by the number of people it brings in and who spend their money in Italy. A strong national airline is a real asset to a country and economics is not everything. A collapse of a flag carrier is virtually unheard of, and for good reason, it would be calamitous at best and catastrophic at worst. Italy is not one of those countries that has multiple or secondary carriers that can be allowed to fail, they only have one and that's Alitalia. Hedging anything on Air Italy right now is a risky bet because they aren't even a year old. If AZ goes under, Italy's domestic air travel market instantly goes in the toilet and you can chuck any idea of bringing in international visitors out the window. The collapse of Monarch was the biggest failure of a British airline in history and people had barely ever heard of them, and even then it causes a crisis and one of the biggest repatriation efforts ever undertaken by the UK. Way more people fly Alitalia, can you imagine the disaster that would ensue from that? It would be nothing short of an absolute catastrophe. Italians would be stranded with extremely limited domestic air travel options and would subject to the whims of other carriers for international travel. If all of this sounds bad, that's because it is. That's why Alitalia, SAA, and Etihad are not allowed to fail; the benefits outweigh the insane risks of allowing them to go under. Thousands of people would lose their jobs, passengers would lose critical air links, and competition would become nonexistent overnight.
Last edited by neomax on Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:23 am, edited 2 times in total.
 
DominoxX
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:20 am

juliuswong wrote:
Following the collapse of Primera Air, whose fleet of seven aircraft served 41 destinations, we look back at other notable airline failures.


2018 has seen below airlines folded up:
Primera
Skywork
JetGo
NextJet
Nature Air
Latin American Wings
Pawa Dominica
Polar Airlines


Latin American Wings was a scam, they didn't pay their bills, the owners used up the profits (most notably) to charter VIP jets to party in Europe and Hollywood.
Thank u, next.
 
mjoelnir
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:32 am

United, Delta and American all went into chapter 11.
 
PlaneInsomniac
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:36 am

Bricktop wrote:
The key quote

"There are perhaps too many airlines in Europe today relative to the size of the market, with too many struggling to keep market share. In the United States, five major airlines provide some 80 per cent plus of scheduled capacity and that may be where the European market will head over time."

It's heading that way with the 3 big groups anyway. Only nationalist vanity will keep some labels open. There will be more consolidation, and I think in a decade and possibly sooner you'll see the disappearance of low cost carriers in long haul. It will ultimately depend on how the competition authorities decide to put their thumb on the scale.


Population US: 325 million
Population Europe: 741 million

Plus, consider the different languages / cultures.

So it's a bit apples and oranges.
Am I cured? Slept 5 hours on last long-haul flight...
 
mjoelnir
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:40 am

neomax wrote:
To be honest, it's probably best if AZ didn't fail. People on here take airline collapses way too lightly; they're gigantic companies that have routes to all kinds of places which requires tons of agreements and paperwork worth years in one of the most heavily regulated and difficult industries in which to operate, and that's to say nothing about the well-know and established reputation they've built up in that time. You can't really compare AB to AZ because AB isn't the flag carrier of Germany. You better believe Germany would NEVER let LH go under because they are the flag carrier, not AB. Italy is gonna do what it has to do to keep AZ alive, because the cost of funding it is easily outweighed by the number of people it brings in and who spend their money in Italy. A strong national airline is a real asset to a country and economics is not everything. A collapse of a flag carrier is virtually unheard of, and for good reason, it would be calamitous at best and catastrophic at worst. Italy is not one of those countries that has multiple or secondary carriers that can be allowed to fail, they only have one and that's Alitalia. Hedging anything on Air Italy right now is a risky bet because they aren't even a year old. If AZ goes under, Italy's domestic air travel market instantly goes in the toilet and you can chuck any idea of bringing in international visitors out the window. The collapse of Monarch was the biggest failure of a British airline in history and people had barely ever heard of them, and even then it causes a crisis and one of the biggest repatriation efforts ever undertaken by the UK. Way more people fly Alitalia, can you imagine the disaster that would ensue from that? It would be nothing short of an absolute catastrophe. Italians would be stranded with extremely limited domestic air travel options and would subject to the whims of other carriers for international travel. If all of this sounds bad, that's because it is. That's why Alitalia, SAA, and Etihad are not allowed to fail; the benefits outweigh the insane risks of allowing them to go under. Thousands of people would lose their jobs, passengers would lose critical air links, and competition would become nonexistent overnight.


A lot of hot air. Lufthansa for example has never been in danger to go under, so what is the point? Quite a few of the national Flag carriers went under in Europe, like Swissair for example. The difference to the USA is that in Europe they usually go under and their assets get picked up.
It would be a good thing if Alitalia would be aloud to die, that would open the space for a new than perhaps healthy airline.

If one goes through the list of western carriers, why is the talk always only about the small carriers failing? Enough of the big ones have failed.
 
Bricktop
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:59 am

PlaneInsomniac wrote:
Bricktop wrote:
The key quote

"There are perhaps too many airlines in Europe today relative to the size of the market, with too many struggling to keep market share. In the United States, five major airlines provide some 80 per cent plus of scheduled capacity and that may be where the European market will head over time."

It's heading that way with the 3 big groups anyway. Only nationalist vanity will keep some labels open. There will be more consolidation, and I think in a decade and possibly sooner you'll see the disappearance of low cost carriers in long haul. It will ultimately depend on how the competition authorities decide to put their thumb on the scale.


Population US: 325 million
Population Europe: 741 million

Plus, consider the different languages / cultures.

So it's a bit apples and oranges.

If you include Russia (144 mm), Turkey (81) Ukraine (42) Kazakhstan (18) and Azerbaijan (10) then sure. But I can easily lop off almost 300 million from your number. Notwithstanding, there are a lot of countries in "Europe" that are smaller in size than London. Common sense says that O&D traffic can't support so many airlines, and if I was a betting man, I would say that a big consolidation or wave of disappearances is well due in Europe. If oil prices go up, look out below. I would also bet that the OEMs are well aware of the softness in their order books.
 
smokeybandit
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 10:08 am

Don't more airlines fail than succeed anyway?
 
PlaneInsomniac
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 10:19 am

Bricktop wrote:
PlaneInsomniac wrote:
Bricktop wrote:
The key quote

"There are perhaps too many airlines in Europe today relative to the size of the market, with too many struggling to keep market share. In the United States, five major airlines provide some 80 per cent plus of scheduled capacity and that may be where the European market will head over time."

It's heading that way with the 3 big groups anyway. Only nationalist vanity will keep some labels open. There will be more consolidation, and I think in a decade and possibly sooner you'll see the disappearance of low cost carriers in long haul. It will ultimately depend on how the competition authorities decide to put their thumb on the scale.


Population US: 325 million
Population Europe: 741 million

Plus, consider the different languages / cultures.

So it's a bit apples and oranges.

If you include Russia (144 mm), Turkey (81) Ukraine (42) Kazakhstan (18) and Azerbaijan (10) then sure. But I can easily lop off almost 300 million from your number. Notwithstanding, there are a lot of countries in "Europe" that are smaller in size than London. Common sense says that O&D traffic can't support so many airlines, and if I was a betting man, I would say that a big consolidation or wave of disappearances is well due in Europe. If oil prices go up, look out below. I would also bet that the OEMs are well aware of the softness in their order books.


Obviously, if you're going to start moving goal posts, the discussion will quickly become useless. The quote we're discussing equated the air travel markets of Europe and the US.

Even the EU alone already has a population of more than 500 million vs. the US's 325. One would at least have to look at the combined markets of the US, Canada and Mexico to approach the market size and diversity of the EU alone. Then already I'm having difficulties seeing only 5 major airlines in the US, Canada and Mexico combined.
Am I cured? Slept 5 hours on last long-haul flight...
 
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klm617
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 10:26 am

For me it would be Skybus and Independence Air.
the truth does matter, guys. too bad it's often quite subjective. the truth is beyond the mere facts and figures. it's beyond good and bad, right and wrong...
 
Italianflyer
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 10:30 am

Swissair? SEBENA?
 
Max Q
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 10:49 am

olddominion727 wrote:
PanAm, Braniff, Aloha, British Caledonian, PSA, AirCal, Continental, America West, Northwest, TWA, Eastern, Western, World Airways, Ansett of Australia, Air Inter, Transamerica, CPAir, Canadian International, MorrisAir, Mexicana



Continental did not ‘fail’


Nor did PSA, Air Cal, America West,
Northwest, Western or Morrisair


All these airlines joined with others
and still exist as merged entities with
large numbers of their employees,
facilities, equipment and aircraft still
in service


You should do a little more research
before you spout such nonsense
The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.


GGg
 
xdlx
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 11:23 am

oldannyboy wrote:
FA9295 wrote:
Alitalia is currently headed in this exact direction.


Sorry, but no, you really have no idea how things work in Rome! Ain't gonna happen!

We can keep talking ad nauseam whether it's right or wrong, whether a state (read: taxpayers) should forage an airline to keep it afloat, etc.. but fact is, no Italian government will ever let AZ fold. Make peace with that.



SPOT ON! The Vatican will move to Sicily before AZ is allowed to fold! Is not an airline, but a GOV WORK GUARANTEE....
 
jfk777
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 12:01 pm

olddominion727 wrote:
PanAm, Braniff, Aloha, British Caledonian, PSA, AirCal, Continental, America West, Northwest, TWA, Eastern, Western, World Airways, Ansett of Australia, Air Inter, Transamerica, CPAir, Canadian International, MorrisAir, Mexicana


British Caledonian merged into BA. Continental merged in United. Western merged into Delta. America West merged into Usairways. PSA into Usairways too. Canadian merged into Air Canada, where do you think their Asian routes come from ?

Your idea of "airline failures" is intersting. That is when an airline shuts down and that's it like Pan AM or Braniff or Mexicana.
 
jfk777
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 12:08 pm

neomax wrote:
To be honest, it's probably best if AZ didn't fail. People on here take airline collapses way too lightly; they're gigantic companies that have routes to all kinds of places which requires tons of agreements and paperwork worth years in one of the most heavily regulated and difficult industries in which to operate, and that's to say nothing about the well-know and established reputation they've built up in that time. You can't really compare AB to AZ because AB isn't the flag carrier of Germany. You better believe Germany would NEVER let LH go under because they are the flag carrier, not AB. Italy is gonna do what it has to do to keep AZ alive, because the cost of funding it is easily outweighed by the number of people it brings in and who spend their money in Italy. A strong national airline is a real asset to a country and economics is not everything. A collapse of a flag carrier is virtually unheard of, and for good reason, it would be calamitous at best and catastrophic at worst. Italy is not one of those countries that has multiple or secondary carriers that can be allowed to fail, they only have one and that's Alitalia. Hedging anything on Air Italy right now is a risky bet because they aren't even a year old. If AZ goes under, Italy's domestic air travel market instantly goes in the toilet and you can chuck any idea of bringing in international visitors out the window. The collapse of Monarch was the biggest failure of a British airline in history and people had barely ever heard of them, and even then it causes a crisis and one of the biggest repatriation efforts ever undertaken by the UK. Way more people fly Alitalia, can you imagine the disaster that would ensue from that? It would be nothing short of an absolute catastrophe. Italians would be stranded with extremely limited domestic air travel options and would subject to the whims of other carriers for international travel. If all of this sounds bad, that's because it is. That's why Alitalia, SAA, and Etihad are not allowed to fail; the benefits outweigh the insane risks of allowing them to go under. Thousands of people would lose their jobs, passengers would lose critical air links, and competition would become nonexistent overnight.



Its unlikely Alitalia will disappear but if it were to there are enough airlines to fill in the gaps to /from Italy.
 
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aemoreira1981
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 12:10 pm

olddominion727 wrote:
PanAm, Braniff, Aloha, British Caledonian, PSA, AirCal, Continental, America West, Northwest, TWA, Eastern, Western, World Airways, Ansett of Australia, Air Inter, Transamerica, CPAir, Canadian International, MorrisAir, Mexicana


Of these, I would include:

Pan American World Airways (PA)
Braniff
Eastern Airlines (first EA)
Ansett Australia
Mexicana
World Airways

The others ended up merging into someone else.

In recent times, Ansett and Mexicana were the largest collapses.

As for the OP, Air Berlin was more like an orderly closure. Transaero was supposed to be, but its debt situation was so severe.

Italianflyer wrote:
Swissair? SEBENA?


I will say no on Swissair because the Swiss government kept it alive long enough for the routes and aircraft to be transferred to Crossair and when SR shut down, LX seamlessly took over. Sabena is debatable, although it was hardly ever profitable after the 1950s. However, like Swissair, creditors gained control of a subsidiary to continue the routes (here, Delta Air Transport). I would call something like the collapse of MALEV more significant in Europe in recent times.
 
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DL747400
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 12:50 pm

capshandler wrote:
What about the big legacy airlines that survived thanks to public constant bailouts... List is long but (not) distinguished.


You and everyone else know full well that the last C11 filings of the US3 were brought about by the 9/11 terror attacks and the resulting economic impact from the war on terror, primarily the huge increases in the price of oil. The C11 filing were totally and completely within the laws of the USA and the US taxpayer-backed loans provided after 9/11 were repaid in full at a net profit to the Treasury.
From First to Worst: The history of Airliners.net.

All posts reflect my opinions, not those of my employer or any other company.
 
twaconnie
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 12:51 pm

Atlwarrior wrote:
I think Eastern Airlines top all of those.

I agree Eastern was big at one time they carried more pax then any airline. Poor management all the way.
 
TWFlyGuy
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 12:52 pm

I may have missed it but Midway...every iteration.
 
LupineChemist
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 12:58 pm

Spanair would be another recent one in Europe
 
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aemoreira1981
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 12:59 pm

TWFlyGuy wrote:
I may have missed it but Midway...every iteration.


The one that collapsed in 1991 was the second of three US carriers to collapse that year. With crude oil prices rising, I would expect to see some more collapses.
 
superjeff
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 1:02 pm

juliuswong wrote:
Following the collapse of Primera Air, whose fleet of seven aircraft served 41 destinations, we look back at other notable airline failures.

Monarch
2017
The collapse of Monarch last year sparked Britain's biggest ever peacetime repatriation. Around 100,000 of its passengers were abroad on October 2, when it ceased trading, while a further 750,000 people had paid for flights they were no longer able to take. It was by far the biggest UK airline failure in history.

Until its collapse, Monarch served 43 destinations with a fleet of 35 aircraft. It flew 5.43 million passengers and employed 2,300 people in 2016, making it Europe's 26th largest airline (it carried more than 7 million in 2014).

Air Berlin
2017
Just one week after the collapse of Monarch, Air Berlin, Germany’s second largest carrier and Europe’s 10th biggest overall (it flew 28.9m passengers in 2016), announced its closure. It had declared bankruptcy two months before after years of losses and the decision of its biggest shareholder, Etihad, to cease bankrolling it.

At the time John Grant, an aviation analyst, suggested more failures could be on the cards: "The competitive environment has become increasingly challenging for many airlines, with many established legacy airlines launching low-cost long-haul services and the continual growth in services from airlines such as easyJet, Ryanair and Norwegian. This has resulted in many mid-market carriers with relatively high cost bases being continually squeezed to a point of failure.

"There are perhaps too many airlines in Europe today relative to the size of the market, with too many struggling to keep market share. In the United States, five major airlines provide some 80 per cent plus of scheduled capacity and that may be where the European market will head over time."

Transaero
2014
Another of the biggest non-UK airlines to cease trading in recent years was Transaero, a Russian carrier with a fleet of 97 and 156 points on its route map. It carried 13.2 million passengers in 2014 but went under the following year after accumulating 3.9bn euros of debt.

FlyGlobespan
2009
The last UK carrier to cease trading before Monarch was Citywing, a virtual airline that operated under charter until March 2017, with a base at Isle of Man Airport, but the last major failure was FlyGlobespan, back in 2009. Based in Edinburgh, it had a fleet of nine aircraft, serving 24 destinations, and flew just over 2 million annual passengers at its height. When it went under, it had just 4,400 customers overseas, and 117,000 forward bookings – small fry compared to Monarch.

XL Airways
2008
In September 2008, XL Airways ceased trading after 14 years in business. It had a fleet of 18 aircraft serving more than 50 destinations, and carried 2.3 million passengers in 2007, but it collapsed – along with the other brands in the XL Leisure group – due to rising fuel prices (crude oil hit an all-time record of $147 a barrel that summer) and a growing global financial crisis. Around 85,000 holidaymakers were stuck overseas, and a further 200,000 had their bookings cancelled.

Zoom Airlines
2008
Founded in 2002, Zoom largely operated flights between Britain and North America with a small fleet of three aircraft. Unable to pay its fuel bills, it ceased trading in August 2008, leaving 900 passengers stranded on either side of the Atlantic. Its failure left 4,500 stranded abroad, while 60,000 forward bookings were lost.

Silverjet
2008
Business-class carrier launched in 2006, billed as the “world’s first carbon-neutral airline”. Based in Luton, offering routes to Newark and Dubai, it only survived for two years, and its fleet never grew beyond three aircraft.

Full article: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/list ... -all-time/

2018 has seen below airlines folded up:
Primera
Skywork
JetGo
NextJet
Nature Air
Latin American Wings
Pawa Dominica
Polar Airlines



In the United States the first major bankruptcy after deregulation was Braniff. That's a watershed. Since then, every single U.S. Major has gone through bankrutpcy and either merged or been acquired (and sometimes eventually gone away):

America West - Bankrupt, reorganized, acquired US AIrways in reverse merger
American - Bankrupt, reverse merger with US Airways
Braniff - Bankrupt, restarted, bankrupt restarted, bankrupt, gone (maintenance operations continued as Dalfort, now acquired)
Continental - Bankrupt, restarted, Bankrupt,restarted. Now merged with United
Delta - Bankrupt, merged with Northwest
Eastern - Bankrupt, liqudated (Eastern II doesn't count)
Frontier - Bankrupt, restarted
Northwest - bankrupt, merged with Delta
;Pan Am - Bankrupt, acquired by/merged with Carnival, bankrupt;name sold, restarted, bankrupt
TWA - Bankrupt, restarted, bankrupt, restarted, bankrupt, assets acquired by American
United - Bankrupt, reorganized, merged with Continental

Deregulation has been kind of scary!
 
Worldair1
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 1:10 pm

Legend Airlines killed by American. Flew them twice from IAD to love. Great service and had DirectTV back in 2000.
 
airbazar
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 1:18 pm

Bricktop wrote:
The key quote

"There are perhaps too many airlines in Europe today relative to the size of the market, with too many struggling to keep market share. In the United States, five major airlines provide some 80 per cent plus of scheduled capacity and that may be where the European market will head over time."

It's heading that way with the 3 big groups anyway. Only nationalist vanity will keep some labels open. There will be more consolidation, and I think in a decade and possibly sooner you'll see the disappearance of low cost carriers in long haul. It will ultimately depend on how the competition authorities decide to put their thumb on the scale.


And yet we're seeing exactly the opposite happen: low cost and low fare carriers entering and expanding long haul. Yes some will fail but eventually the right formula will be found. Do you think the flying public will ever want to pay $1000 for TATL ticket when they've gotten used to paying $400? Not a chance.
What you call nationalist vanity is just a different business model. In the U.S. for example the majority of regional flying is actually done by a completely different airline (a "regional"), but branded as a major. In Europe that doesn't exist as much. Over there the majority of regional flying is done by either LCC's or by those smaller "national" airlines. Just look at any secondary airport and you'll be hard presses to find a tail from any of the top 3 groups. Do you think BA or LH or AF will ever be interested in flying a route like LIS-OVD for example? No, not a chance.
 
TropicalSky
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 1:25 pm

Nothing compares to PAN AM......it was so huge that multiple airlines UNITED,DELTA,AMERICAN all got rights or parts of the company
 
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Super80Fan
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 1:29 pm

Worldair1 wrote:
Legend Airlines killed by American. Flew them twice from IAD to love. Great service and had DirectTV back in 2000.


Don't think it would exist today especially with the semi repeal of the Wright Amendment and WN expanding but AA and Fort Worth certainly didn't help their cause lol.
RIP McDonnell Douglas
RIP US Airways
 
TWFlyGuy
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Re: "The biggest airline failures of all time, from Trump Shuttle to Laker Airways"

Thu Oct 04, 2018 1:46 pm

Super80Fan wrote:
Worldair1 wrote:
Legend Airlines killed by American. Flew them twice from IAD to love. Great service and had DirectTV back in 2000.


Don't think it would exist today especially with the semi repeal of the Wright Amendment and WN expanding but AA and Fort Worth certainly didn't help their cause lol.


That and fuel prices. They were no different that Midwest Airlines which had to move to offering traditional coach service. Then they added 717's which were too heavy for the job they wanted them to do thus inefficient.

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