Ghana Airways was quick to get an interest in the new jets on offer and during 1960 when it was ordering Viscounts and IL-18s it also ordered a pair of Boeing 707-420s and three VC10s. The airline had grandiose dreams of flying the 707s to the United States and Australia but the financial troubles of 1961 put paid to those and instead it had to wait a while longer before it could really join the jet age.
Deregulation in the USA caused a whirlwind of changes in the industry when it enabled pretty much anyone to fly anywhere they liked. For most airlines this led to a lot of red ink and their collapse. Long-haul routes from the mainland to Hawaii or Hawaii to elsewhere in the Pacific had already been super competitive since the early 70s but that didn't stop three airlines from trying to break into the market all using McDonnell Douglas DC-10s. Here's their stories...
Following on from Part 1 VARIG by the mid-1960s was Brazil's primary international airline, but in getting to this position, through its acqusition of its competitors, it sure had gained a varied fleet. VARIG had chosen the 707-441 as its primary long-haul jet type but REAL and Panair do Brasil had not and that led to multiple jet types in service. Eventually however VARIG would in the 1970s be able to clean things up a bit and standardise on McDonnell Douglas' DC-10 trijet.
The 1979 OPEC oil crisis, triggered by the Iranian Revolution, threw CP Air's equipment plans into chaos. As already described in part 2 the airline had bought new DC-10s, but it had also ordered four of Boeing's, then new, 767-200s (along with four options) for its North Atlantic routes. With the resulting global recession CP Air was instead looking for fleet rationalisation rather than expansion and the 767s would never see service.
In 1968 Canadian Pacific became CP Air when its owner, the Canadian Pacific Railway, decided to align all its brands. Each of Canadian Pacific's divisions (CP Rail, CP Transport, CP Express, CP Ships, CP Telecommunications, CP Hotels and CP Air) gained a linked branding using the new Multi-mark arrow logo. The arrow depicted motion, the semi-circle global service and the square stability. Each division gained a dominant colour with CP Air getting Orange. This led to the advertising firm 'Lippincott & Margulies' who were responsible for the makeover coming up with the slogan "Orange is beautiful". The new livery first appeared on new 737-200s in October 1968.
United was the joint launch customer for McDonnell Douglas’s new trijet widebody in 1968 along with American Airlines. The arrival of a large fleet of 747s helped United to lose $46 million in 1970 however that didn’t stop them ordering an impressive fleet of DC-10s. They ordered 30 with 30 options and the type entered service on 16th August 1971 seating 222 passengers. Forty six were delivered up to 1981 including five which were initially leased to Delta while they awaited their Tristars.
Turkish Airlines can trace its history back to 1933 but became Türk Hava Yollari (THY) in 1956. Their first jet, a DC-9, joined in 1967 and during the late 60s the airline experienced a period of major growth. Only a year after receiving a trio of new 707s in 1971 the first widebodies joined the fleet in the form of three DC-10s. THY at the time was notorious for delays and safety issues and the first of the DC-10s, TC-JAV, crashed outside of Paris in 1974 killing all 346 onboard. This was however not the fault of the airline but of the aircraft, when a faulty cargo door opened in flight. A similar issue had almost caused the loss of an American Airlines in 1972, but terribly the issue was not fixed until the massive loss of life near Paris.
National Airlines was a well run Trunk airline during the 1970s and like Continental built its fleet around two types in that decade - the DC-10 and 727. In 1970 National gained the rights to service Europe and opened a Miami-London route, initially with 747s. European services expanded and the 747s were gradually replaced by the long-range DC-10-30 – National already being a DC-10-10 customer since 1971.
Pan Am's dalliance with widebody three-holers isn't an entirely happy one (in keeping with the airline's general malaise of its last 15 years or so). First up in 1978 PA caused some consternation by ordering 12 of Lockheed's rather desperate shortened Tristar the series 500.
I'm Richard Stretton: a fan of classic airliners and airlines who enjoys exploring their history through my collection of die-cast airliners. If you enjoy the site please donate whatever you can to help keep it running: