Saturday, 26 October 2013

The end of the Boeing 747?

                                   The final resting place for many 747's (Photo:

The '747', 'Jumbo Jet' or 'Queen Of The Skies'  may soon be a rare sight. Why? Airlines simply don't want to buy them.

The introduction of the 747 into commercial service with Pan Am in early 1970 saw massive support throughout the whole aviation industry. For nearly 40 years it held strong as the biggest and most amazing airliner in the world. Every major airline in existence had huge orders for the aircraft. Singapore Airlines once had over 50 747's in their fleet, and had the largest fleet of 747's in the world. In April 2012, they retired their last 747. Many airlines are beginning to do the same, and every day the chances of seeing a 747 take-off or land get smaller. 

Tata and Singapore Airlines to launch new airline in June next year

After lengthy discussion and a final 'OK' from the Foreign Investment Promotion Board, Tata-Sons and Singapore Airlines (SIA) have announced that they hope to commence operations of their new Indian based commercial airline in May-June next year. This announcement was provided by Prasad Menon, the Chairman of the new airline. Plans state that SIA will initially hold a 49% stake, with a $49 Million investment. Tata will hold the remaining 51% as well as provide $51 Million for investment.

Unsurprisingly no information about the name, branding, cabins or routes has been released as yet. However, the Chairman stated that they may be utilising aircraft from SIA's current fleet. This will most likely include the airline's older 777-200s, as they are progressively replaced by the 777-300ER, A350 and 787-10X. This airline will be a premium full service carrier, and in the midst of this, Tata have revealed plans to create an Indian budget carrier with Air Asia.

Left to right: Goh Choon Phong (SIA CEO), Ratan Tata (Tata-Sons Chairman Emeritus), Anand Sharma (Indian Minister For Commerce And Industry) - Photo : AFP