48 Facts About Pan Am


Until its dissolution in 1991, Pan Am "epitomized the luxury and glamour of intercontinental travel", and it remains a cultural icon of the 20th century, identified by its blue globe logo, the use of the word "Clipper" in its aircraft names and call signs, and the white uniform caps of its pilots.

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Pan Am was a founding member of the International Air Transport Association, the global airline industry association, and helped shape the industry standard in hospitality and customer service.

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ACA chartered a Fairchild FC-2 floatplane from a small Dominican Republic carrier, West Indian Aerial Express, allowing Pan Am to operate the first flight to Havana on 19 October 1927.

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Pan Am's holding company, the Aviation Corporation of the Americas, was one of the most sought after stocks on the New York Curb Exchange in 1929, and flurries of speculation surrounded each of its new route awards.

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Pan Am started its South American routes with Consolidated Commodore and Sikorsky S-38 flying boats.

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In 1937 Pan Am turned to Britain and France to begin seaplane service between the United States and Europe.

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Pan Am reached an agreement with both countries to offer service from Norfolk, Virginia, to Europe via Bermuda and the Azores using the S-42s.

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Pan Am ran its first survey flight to Honolulu in April 1935 with a Sikorsky S-42 flying boat.

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Pan Am used Boeing 314 flying boats for the Pacific route: in China, passengers could connect to domestic flights on the Pan Am-operated China National Aviation Corporation network, co-owned with the Chinese government.

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Pan Am flew to Singapore for the first time in 1941, starting a semi-monthly service which reduced San Francisco–Singapore travel times from 25 days to six days.

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In January 1946 Pan Am scheduled seven DC-4s a week east from LaGuardia Airport, five to London and two to Lisbon.

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In January 1958 Pan Am's DC-7Bs flew New York to Buenos Aires in 25 hours 20 minutes, while the National – Pan Am – Panagra DC-7B via Panama and Lima took 22 hours 45 minutes.

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Pan Am acquired a few Curtiss C-46s for a freight network that eventually extended to Buenos Aires.

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In January 1946 Pan Am had no transpacific flights beyond Hawaii, but they soon resumed with DC-4s.

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In June 1947 Pan Am started the first scheduled round-the-world airline flight.

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Pan Am introduced the Douglas DC-7C "Seven Seas" on transatlantic routes in summer 1956.

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In January 1958 the DC-7C nonstop took 10 hours 45 minutes Idlewild to London, enabling Pan Am to hold its own against TWA's Super Constellations and Starliners.

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In 1957 Pan Am started DC-7C flights direct from the West Coast of the United States to London and Paris with a fuel stop in Canada or Greenland.

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In January 1958 Pan Am scheduled 47 flights a week east from Idlewild to Europe, Africa, the Middle East and beyond; the following August there were 65.

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Pan Am carried 11 million passengers over 20 billion miles in 1970, the year it revolutionized air travel with the first widebodied airliner.

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Pan Am was one of the first three airlines to sign options for the Aerospatiale-BAC Concorde, but like other airlines that took out options – with the exception of BOAC and Air France – it did not purchase the supersonic jet.

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Pan Am was the first US airline to sign for the Boeing 2707, the American supersonic transport project, with 15 delivery positions reserved; these aircraft never saw service after Congress voted against additional funding in 1971.

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Pan Am commissioned IBM to build PANAMAC, a large computer that booked airline and hotel reservations, which was installed in 1964.

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Computer occupied the fourth floor of the Pan Am Building, which was the largest commercial office building in the world for some time.

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Pan Am built a gilded training building in the style of Edward Durell Stone designed by Steward-Skinner Architects in Miami.

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At its peak in the late 1960s and early 1970s, Pan Am advertised under the slogan, the "World's Most Experienced Airline".

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In 1964 Pan Am began a helicopter shuttle between New York's John F Kennedy, LaGuardia and Newark airports and Lower Manhattan, operated by New York Airways.

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At its height Pan Am was well regarded for its modern fleet and experienced crews: cabin staff were multilingual and usually college graduates, hired from around the world, frequently with nursing training.

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From 1950 until 1990 Pan Am operated a comprehensive network of high-frequency, short-haul scheduled services between West Germany and West Berlin, first with Douglas DC-4s, then with DC-6Bs and Boeing 727s .

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Pan Am operated a Berlin crew base of mainly German flight attendants and American pilots to staff its IGS flights.

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Pan Am operated Rest and Recreation flights during the Vietnam War.

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Pan Am had invested in a large fleet of Boeing 747s expecting that air travel would continue to increase.

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Pan Am was vulnerable, with its high overheads as a result of a large decentralized infrastructure.

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Pan Am remained an American carrier operating international routes only .

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The last time Pan Am was permitted to merge with another airline prior to the deregulation of the US airline industry was in 1950, when it took over American Overseas Airlines from American Airlines.

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The renamed Pan Am Express operated routes mostly from New York, as well as Berlin, Germany.

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However, the regional Pan Am Express operation provided only an incremental feed to Pan Am's international route system, which was now focused on the Atlantic Division.

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The renamed Pan Am Shuttle began operating out of LaGuardia Airport's refurbished historic Marine Air Terminal in October 1986.

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However, it did not address the pressing issue of Pan Am's continuing lack of a strong domestic feeder network.

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However, billionaire financier Al Checchi outbid Pan Am by presenting Northwest's directors with a superior proposal.

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Two months later Delta assumed all of Pan Am's remaining transatlantic traffic rights, except Miami to Paris and London.

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Pan Am was the third American major airline to shut down in 1991, after Eastern Air Lines and Midway Airlines.

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Pan Am's last remaining hub was split during the following years between United Airlines and American Airlines.

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Pan Am cites an observation made by former Pan Am Vice President for External Affairs, Stanley Gewirtz:.

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Pan Am began operating by using the flight simulation and type rating training center of the defunct Pan Am.

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In 1977, to commemorate its 50th birthday, Pan Am organized Flight 50, a round-the-world flight from San Francisco to San Francisco, this time over the North Pole and the South Pole with stops in London Heathrow, Cape Town Airport and Auckland Airport.

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Pan Am held a lofty position in the popular culture of the Cold War era.

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Pan Am had in reality spent most of his late teenage years in prison, and had only written a handful of false Pan Am checks that were rapidly detected as false, and landed him back in prison.

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