Air France at 80 for years! Many years of smooth flights without incident! (video)
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Air France celebrates 80 years of existence today. The French air carrier officially launched on 7 October 1933, being, along with KLM, one of the few airlines that were founded before World War II and have kept their name until now. At the base of Air France are 5 French companies: Air Union, Air Orient, Société Générale de Air Transport (SGTA), CIDNA and Aéropostale.
The 80 years of existence have carried Air France through all the times of commercial aeronautics, from the period when the air travel was considered a luxury, to the expansion and diversification of the present routes.
In 1938, just 5 years after its founding, Air France had the third largest network globally and carried more than 100.000 of passengers annually. On 26 June 1945, the company was nationalized and underwent major changes, and since December 29 1945 management of the entire French air transport network began. At 1 July 1946, Air France operated the first flight between Paris and New York, with a stopover at Shannon (Ireland) and Gander (Canada) for refueling. Douglas DC-4 aircraft honored this route in approximately 20 hours. Through 1948, Air France operates 130 aircraft, one of the largest fleets at the time.
In 1949, almost 14.000 people were employed in the company, among them being the first female flight attendant. In 1956, Air France ranks 6 globally in passenger transport, according to major US companies. Air France was among the first companies to order type aircraft Boeing 707 and Caravelle.
The civil aviation industry evolved and the flight was no longer the property of the rich. In 1961, a flight from Paris to New York costs 3 times less than in 1956. The refining image was kept constant (the flight attendants wore uniforms created by Dior), while Air France "democratized" the travel by plane. Prices have dropped, new entertainment methods have emerged (în 1966, theaters appeared on board airplanes). In 1969, more than 5 million and half passengers traveled with Air France.
Cinematograph aboard Air France aircraft!
At 21 January 1976, Air France operated the inaugural flight with the Concorde aircraft (F-BVFA), on the route Paris - Rio de Janeiro via Dakar. The "Beautiful White Bird" flew between Paris and Dakar, Rio de Janeiro, Caracas, Washington (since May 24, 1976), Dallas, New York (since November 22, 1977).
A flight Paris - New York took 3 hours and 20 minutes at Mach 2 speed. The speed of the Concorde plane exceeded that of the twilight, being able to match or exceed the speed of rotation of the earth. On flights to the west, it was possible to arrive at a local time earlier than the departure time. Concorde aircraft flew to 2003.
At the end of the years `80, Air France ranks 3 in the passenger transport classification. In 1993, the Air France Group appeared, after Air France bought UTA, the main shareholder of Air Inter.
In the year 2000, Air France has joined the SkyTeam alliance, which currently has 19 airlines. At 5 May 2004, Air France and KLM united their destinies and thus appeared the Air France-KLM group. The two companies complement each other perfectly through the Paris Charles de Gaulle and Amsterdam Schiphol hubs.
On 23 November 2009, the fleet was renewed and was purchased first Airbus 380, the largest passenger aircraft in the world.
Currently, the company has a fleet of 246 aircraft, which is constantly renewed, the average operating age of its aircraft being 10 years. Air France, together with its regional subsidiary HOP !, operates 1.500 daily flights both in France and in the rest of Europe and around the world, and Air France aircraft arrive in 243 from 103 countries.
After 80 years since its inception, Air France remains a leader in air transport. In 2013, Air France carried 77,4 millions of passengers.
Air France operates 3 daily flights between Paris and Bucharest, less on Saturdays when it has 2 flights. The load rating is very good, well above the European average, reaching even 90%.
80 years of Air France, 80 years of passion!