A Truly Global Airplane?

Well, here is an aircraft which is on its way to becoming a truly global airplane which I found at the gate next to the one where the airplane on which I was a passenger was parked at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York: it is a Boeing 777 aircraft built in North America; operated by a European carrier with Asia imprinted on it in several places — and yet the aircraft is named after a place in South America…

Photograph ©2015 by Brian Cohen.

Photograph ©2015 by Brian Cohen.

…so how can Africa, Australia and Antarctica be incorporated into this airplane to have it represent all seven continents?

All photographs ©2015 by Brian Cohen.

5 thoughts on “A Truly Global Airplane?”

  1. Jetstream007 says:

    Hi Brian, it’s one of ‘KLM-Asia’ planes, technically belonging not to KLM but to a different company: KLM-Asia. Why all that? KLM has been flying to China and Taiwan for many decades. However China in the past did not want any kind of recognition of Taiwan (which it considers China as you will know) at the time.
    So it told the carrier it would lose all it landing rights in China if it started flying to Taipei…
    To solve this problem another airline was set up flying airplanes with a KLM looking livery (as in your picture)….not owned by KLM…

    When you fly AMS-TPE you will be on one of those birds, together with (some) taiwanese cabin crewmembers. Of course these planes can be “wet-leased” to fly for KLM on all their routes, but I’ll doubt if they will fly them to China mainland, ( KLM flies directly to 12 Chinese cities directly from AMS) even these days…

    1. Brian Cohen says:

      That all makes sense. Thank you for that excellent information, Jetstream007

      …but why name the airplane Machu Picchu, of all places?

      1. Jetstream007 says:

        KLM names it airplanes in series. The 777’s are named after famous (tourist/world) destinations. In the samen series you have for example: Borobudur, Iguacu Falls, Galapagos, Chizen Itza, Mt Kilimanjaro, Yellowstone NP, and so on… I guess it’s a matter of coincedence, but I’m sure they did not name it after the Great Wall :-)…

  2. Andrew says:

    And there is/was:

    Japan Asia
    Air France Asia
    British Asia Airways
    Swissair Asia
    Australia Asia Airways (Qantas)

    Japan Asia Airways, Co., Ltd. (日本アジア航空株式会社 Nihon Ajia Kōkū Kabushiki-gaisha?) (JAA) is a defunct subsidiary of Japan Airlines (JAL) which existed between 1975 and 2008. JAA was headquartered in the Japan Airlines Building in Shinagawa, Tokyo. It was established as a wholly owned subsidiary of JAL on 8 August 1975 and given the responsibility of providing air links between Japan and Taiwan formerly offered by JAL. This move was prompted as a compromise by the threat from the Chinese government, which considers Taiwan as a Chinese province, not to grant traffic rights to JAL for its proposed services to China.

    British Asia Airways was a subsidiary of British Airways formed in March 1993, based in the Taiwan, to operate between London and Taipei via Hong Kong. It used the Boeing 747-436.[3] repainted in a special livery, with the Union Flag tailfin being replaced by the Chinese characters 英亞 (Hanyu Pinyin: Yīng Yà; literally British Asia). It flew between Taipei and Hong Kong using the code BR, which BA had inherited from British Caledonian, while the flight from London used BA. It ceased operations after BA suspended flights to Taipei in December 2001.

    Swissair Asia was formed to serve Taipei, Taiwan, within the Republic of China, while Swissair was maintaining service to the People’s Republic of China. Aircraft formerly used by Swissair Asia had the Chinese character Ruì (瑞), from the Chinese translation of Switzerland, Ruìshì (瑞士), on the tail fin instead of the cross.

    Australia Asia Airlines (IATA: IM, ICAO: AAU, Call sign: Austasia) (澳亞航空公司 Àoyà Hángkōng Gōngsī) was a wholly owned subsidiary of Qantas set up to operate services between Australia and Taiwan. The airline operated two Boeing 747SPs and a Boeing 767 aircraft seconded from the Qantas fleet, repainted in a modified livery, which did not display the Flag of Australia, or the kangaroo logo, which was replaced by a dynamic ribbon. It initially flew its flights using the IATA code IM but switched to Qantas’s QF in 1994. Australia Asia Airlines ceased operations in 1996 as Qantas could by then serve Taiwan in its own right due to it being completely privatized. Australia Asia Airline’s aircraft were then returned to Qantas service

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