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Flying through the years: Celebrating Aviation Milestones in 2024

2024 is the year of many milestones being celebrated within the aviation industry. From airlines to airports whether it be one year or 50 years, we can’t wait to see people do to mark these special occasions. Below we’ve noted just a few of the anniversaries being recognised this year so make sure to keep your eyes peeled throughout the year.


LOT Polish Airlines – 95th Anniversary

This year we have already celebrated some aviation milestones including the 95th anniversary of LOT Polish Airlines. Celebrated on the 1st January, this milestone makes it one of the oldest continuously operating airlines. A lot has happened over the past 95 years including the transition from Soviet to modern American aircrafts (Boeing 767s and 737s), taking on a Boeing 787 Dreamliner and embracing advanced technology that has been introduced throughout the aviation industry. Looking ahead, what does the future hold for LOT Polish Airlines? The airline will be expanding their modern fleet, collaborating with businesses and prioritising sustainability.


Dallas Fort Worth International Airport – 50th Anniversary

On the 13th January Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) celebrated its 50th anniversary of operations. It first began in 1974 as the country’s newest and most modern commercial airport. Since operations began in the 1970s a lot has changed compared to 2023, some of these include going from being the world’s largest airport by land to the third, increasing runways from three to seven, seeing a large increase in airlines from nine to 28 and going from 6.8 million passengers in 1974 to an estimated 80 million passengers in 2023.


It has certainly achieved a lot in the last 50 years, which brings us onto some of the many highlights that have happened. In 1973 before the opening of the airport, Concorde made its first visit to the US by landing at DFW airport. In 1981 American Airlines confirmed DFW as its first hub, it then went on to be the first commercial airport to host a space shuttle landing in 1989. DFW was named ‘Airport of the Year’ in 2019 by Air Transport World and in 2023 it confirmed a new Use and Lease Agreement to pre-approve projects which include the rebuild of Terminal C and constructing new Terminal F.


Celebrations will be happening throughout the year with more details to follow so make sure you’re keeping an eye out for these.

 

Oneworld Alliance – 25th Birthday

Oneworld alliance was launched back in 1999 by founding members American Airlines, British Airways, Cathaway Pacific and Qantas. The purpose of Oneworld was to increase connectivity and flexibility for passengers and to reward frequent flyers with benefits and privileges. The global airline alliance now consists of 13 members including Japan Airlines, Malaysia Airlines, SriLankan Airlines and many more. This year Oman Air is set to join the oneworld alliance which will take the total to 14 members.


A member airline flight now takes off or lands somewhere every six seconds, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. They also serve more than 900 global destinations offering travellers access to more than 600 premium airport lounges. In January of this year the alliance opened its first oneworld branded lounge experience at Incheon Airport in Seoul, South Korea. It also became the first alliance to join IATA CO2 Connect re-confirming its commitment to sustainability.

 

Japan Airlines – 70 years of international flights

In 1954 Japan Airlines (JAL) became the first Japanese airline to operate scheduled international flights after World War II with the following route: Tokyo – Honolulu – San Francisco. Over the past 70 years the growth of the airline has been enormous, and it now operates at 376 airports in 64 countries/regions.


There have been plenty of highlights over the decades including buying their first jet passenger aircraft, DC – 8 and launching their Northbound Europe route and New York route in the 1960s.


In the 1970’s the JAL scholarship programme was established, the airline transported Panda’s from China and the Boeing 747, known as the “Jumbo Jet” began its service.

In the 1980s we saw the Boeing 767 be introduced, the “JALPAS” integrated passenger system launched and domestic routes established, Haneda – Kagoshima, Haneda – Komatsu and Nagoya – Fukuoka.


The 1990s witnessed both the Boeing 747-400 and 777 enter service. Finally, in the 2000s the airline joined oneworld alliance and in 2018 was recognised by Skytrax World Airline Rating for providing a 5 star service. In the last four years JAL has announced it’s aiming for virtually zero CO2 emissions by 2050 and last year it received the APEX WORLD CLASS™ award, this makes it the only Japanese airline to receive this. This has been awarded to the airline for three consecutive years.


Plenty of milestones means plenty to celebrate for Japan Airlines.

 

Aero Aviation Trade Show – 30th Anniversary

Looking ahead to the rest of the year there are still many milestones to be celebrated including the 30th anniversary of the Aero Aviation Trade Show - Friedrichshafen. This year the leading trade show for general aviation will be celebrating its 30th birthday from the 17th – 20th April. Every year the trade show gets more exciting and 2024 will be no different. The major topic of Aero 2024 will again be the transition of aviation towards greater sustainability and will also feature a broad range of professional conferences. This is bound to be a must – visit show so follow the website link for more information https://www.aero-expo.com/ 

 

AeroMexico – 90th Anniversary

Mexico’s longest standing airline is turning 90 this year!


To celebrate this remarkable milestone the airline will be expanding their fleet with new aircraft and plans to add 25 new 737 MAX and five new 787 Dreamliners. The new fleets will help with the expansion of their route network as it plans to, alongside Delta Airlines, introduce more than 15 new routes between Mexico and USA. This is certainly something to look forward to over the coming year.

 

Other notable anniversary mentions include Ibom Air who will be celebrating 5 years in June 2024, Frontier Airlines who will be celebrating 30 years this year and we will also be seeing the 75th anniversary of the first flight of the Canberra, Britain’s first jet bomber. South Yorkshire Aircraft Museum will be celebrating the milestone over the weekend of the 11th – 12th May. Those attending will enjoy a couple of days of Canberra cockpit sections, crew reunions, exhibitions, presentations and many more things still to be revealed. It’s sure to be a great weekend for aviation lovers.


British Airways will be celebrating 105 years since their first scheduled flight on the 25th August 1919. Their first flight flew out of Hounslow Heath and had one passenger on board. This year Ultra – low cost airline Allegiant will be celebrating 26 years since their first commercial flight in 1998 when they commenced operations out of Las Vegas. It’s been 40 years since Virgin Atlantic took to the skies for the first time. The flight was in a leased Boeing 747 from London Gatwick (LGR) to Newark. Since that day it has gone on to be one of the most recognised airlines in the world. Emirates will be celebrating 39 years since their first flight on the 25th October 1985 from Dubai using a Boeing 737 and Airbus 300. It has also been 37 years since the airline took delivery of their first aircraft, an Airbus A310 – 304. Since then, it has gone on to form partnerships with Qantas as well as winning many awards including ‘World’s best airline’ in 2016 and the ‘largest international airline’ in 2020.

 

These are just a few of the aviation anniversaries taking place this year and we’re sure there will be many more. We certainly can’t wait to see what celebrations will be taking place.

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