Re: Concorde's other customers

Date:         03 Nov 97 19:20:04 
From:         westin* (Stephen H. Westin)
Organization: Program of Computer Graphics -- Cornell University
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  or MIME structure (Jay Vassos-Libove) writes:

> A recent post here about orders placed for Boeing's '2707' SST
> (prior to the program's cancellation) got a reply which indicated
> a laundry list of airlines, US and foreign, which had also placed
> orders for the Concorde.
> This raised the question in my mind:  Why did no airlines other than
> BA and AF ever actually get any Concordes, since there were a dozen
> or more orders for it from other airlines?

Because by the time it was ready for delivery (in 1974?) the airline
industry was in a nasty slump, there had been an oil crisis, and
everyone canceled orders. Remember that Pan Am was the third launch
customer; they had already started their long slide into bankruptcy by
'74. Oh, and U.S. airports were refusing landing rights due to noise
considerations, so the transatlantic routes for which the plane was
designed weren't available. By the time these restrictions were
lifted, in '76, it was, regrettably, all over for Concorde.

I suspect that paying whatever penalties were involved was deemed
cheaper than taking delivery and actually trying to fly the

BA and AF were, of course, government-owned airlines, and carrying
through was a way of saving face. I believe they lost money in service
for some years.

-Stephen H. Westin
Any information or opinions in this message are mine: they do not
represent the position of Cornell University or any of its sponsors.