This book reveals the extraordinary story of what was once the world’s largest airline. Pan-Am, TWA, BOAC, Sabena and countless other carriers have all flown away for good, but despite the odds, Aeroflot jets continue to soar in the skies above.
By the early 1980s it was estimated that 1 in 10 of the world’s flights was an Aeroflot one.
The Cold War wasthe longest-lasting conflict in modern history and throughout it; Aeroflot was the unique symbol of the Soviet Union.
Nowadays, Aeroflot is one of the world’s leading brands, but this unknown giant was treated with suspicion as it extended its operations into Western Europe and the rest of the world during the 50s and 60s.
Russia’s extraordinary transition from the propeller airplane to the jet with the launch of the TU-104, is one of the defining moments in the race for technical supremacy, but their desperate quest for supersonic travel was a disaster.
In Soviet times, Aeroflot wasn’t just providing commercial passenger services, it also ran air ambulance; heavy lifting craft for the Soviet Space Agency; offshore oil platform support; exploration surveys for natural resources; crop spraying, support for construction projects; transport of military troops and supplies and atmospheric research; and remote area patrol.
2017 was a rotten year for air travel, but not for Aeroflot.
As Ryanair grappled with a pilot shortage, United Airlines reeled from the fallout when a passenger was dragged off a plane and a British Airways blunder disrupted tens of thousands of people’s travel plans – Aeroflot were riding high taking the prestigious World’s Leading Airline Brand prize at the World Travel Awards, soon after, it was named the ‘world’s most powerful airline brand’ by Brand Finance