Scandinavian Airlines

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Scandinavian Airlines
Scandinavian Airlines logo.svg
IATA
SK
ICAO
SAS
Callsign
SCANDINAVIAN
Founded 1 August 1946
Hubs
Focus cities
Frequent-flyer program EuroBonus
Airport lounge Scandinavian Lounge & Business Lounge
Alliance Star Alliance
Fleet size 141
Destinations 100+
Company slogan 'Service och enkelhet.' (Swedish)
'Service og enkelhed.' (Danish)
'Service og enkelhet.' (Norwegian)
'Service and simplicity.' (English)
Parent company Scandinavian Airlines System Aktiebolag
Headquarters Stockholm Arlanda Airport,
Sigtuna, Sweden
Key people
Website www.flysas.com

Scandinavian Airlines or SAS, previously Scandinavian Airlines System, is the flag carrier of Denmark, Norway, and Sweden,[1] and the largest airline in Scandinavia.

Part of the Scandinavian Airlines System Aktiebolag and headquartered at Stockholm-Arlanda Airport in Sigtuna, Sweden, the airline operates 182 aircraft to 90 destinations. The airline's only major intercontinental hub is at Copenhagen-Kastrup Airport.[2] Copenhagen-Kastrup airport is also the largest of three hubs for European routes, with Oslo Airport, Gardermoen and Stockholm-Arlanda Airport as second and third respectively. Minor hubs also exist at Bergen Airport, Flesland, Gothenburg-Landvetter Airport, Stavanger Airport, Sola and Trondheim Airport, Værnes.

In 2012, SAS carried 25.9 million passengers, achieving revenues of SEK 36 billion.[3] This makes it the ninth-largest airline in Europe. The SAS fleet consists of Airbus A319, A320, A321, A330 and A340, Boeing 737 Next Generation, and Bombardier CRJ900 aircraft.

The airline was founded in 1946 as a consortium to pool the transatlantic operations of Det Danske Luftfartselskab, Svensk Interkontinental Lufttrafik and Det Norske Luftfartselskap. The consortium was extended to cover European and domestic cooperation two years later. In 1951, all the airlines were merged to create SAS.

SAS is one of the founding members of Star Alliance.

History[edit]

Founding[edit]

Revenue Passenger-Kilometers, scheduled flights only, in millions
Year Traffic
1950 509
1955 1086
1960 2199
1965 3189
1969 4797
1971 5682
1975 7955
1980 10996
1985 12063
1995 18506
Source: ICAO Digest of Statistics for 1950-55, IATA World Air Transport Statistics 1960-1995
A privately preserved Douglas DC-3 in flight wearing SAS late 1940s-style markings
SAS had nine Convair 440s flying in 1972 .
SAS Boeing 747, used on busy longhaul routes during the '70s and '80s
The DC-10 was used on long-haul routes during the 1970s and '80s.

The airline was founded on 1 August 1946, when Svensk Interkontinental Lufttrafik AB (an airline owned by the Swedish Wallenberg family), Det Danske Luftfartselskab A/S and Det Norske Luftfartselskap AS (the flag carriers of Denmark and Norway) formed a partnership to handle the intercontinental air traffic of these three Scandinavian countries.[4] Operations started on 17 September 1946. In 1948 the Swedish flag carrier AB Aerotransport joined SAS and the companies coordinated European operations and finally merged to form the SAS Consortium in 1951. When established, the airline was divided between SAS Danmark (28.6%), SAS Norge (28.6%) and SAS Sverige (42.8%), all owned 50% by private investors and 50% by their governments.[citation needed]

SAS used DC-8s on intercontinental routes during the 1960s and '70s. Here a −63 approaching Arlanda Airport
SAS operated flights to Greenland until March 2003, the route re-opened the spring 2007 until January 2009. The Boeing 767-383ER at Kangerlussuaq Airport (2001)
The company logo in the 1980s was made up of stripes in the colours of the flags of Denmark, Norway, and Sweden

Trans polar route[edit]

In 1954 SAS was the first airline to start scheduled flights on a polar route. The DC-6B flew from Copenhagen to Los Angeles, California, U.S.A. with stops in Søndre Strømfjord, Greenland, and Winnipeg, Canada. By summer 1956 frequency had increased to three flights per week. It was popular with Hollywood celebrities and film industry people, and the route turned out to be a publicity coup for SAS. Thanks to a tariff structure that allowed free transit to other European destinations via Copenhagen, this trans-polar route gained increasing popularity with American tourists throughout the 1950s. In 1957 SAS started a second polar route when a DC-7C flew from Copenhagen to Tokyo, Japan, via Anchorage, Alaska. The flight via Alaska was a compromise solution since the Soviet Union would not allow SAS - and other air carriers - to fly across Siberia between Europe and Japan, while the airspace of the PR China was also closed.[citation needed] SAS publicized this service as "round-the-world service over the North Pole".[citation needed]

Jet Era[edit]

SAS entered the jet age in 1959 when the Caravelle entered service. In 1971, SAS put its first Boeing 747 jumbo jet into service.[citation needed]

Acquisition of local airlines[edit]

SAS gradually acquired control of the domestic markets in all three countries by acquiring full or partial control of local airlines, including Braathens and Widerøe in Norway, Linjeflyg and Skyways Express in Sweden and Cimber Air in Denmark. In 1989, SAS acquired 18.4% of Texas Air Corporation, parent company of Continental Airlines, in a bid to form a global alliance. This stake was later sold. During the 1990s, SAS also bought a 20% stake in British Midland. SAS bought 95% of Spanair, the second largest airline in Spain, as well as Air Greenland. There are plans to dispose of all of these holdings[5] and an agreement to divest more than 80 percent of the holdings in Spanair was signed with a Catalonian group of investors led by Consorci de Turisme de Barcelona and Catalana d'Inciatives in January 2009.[6]

Star Alliance founding member[edit]

SAS was one of the largest DC-9 operators in the world.

In May 1997 SAS formed the global Star Alliance network with Air Canada, Lufthansa, Thai Airways International and United Airlines. Four years earlier SAS unsuccessfully tried to merge with KLM, Star Alliance partner Austrian Airlines, and the now defunct Swissair, in a project called Alcazar.[7] This failure led to the departure the following year of CEO Jan Carlzon, who was credited for the financial turnaround of the company starting in 1981 and who envisioned SAS ownership of multiple airlines worldwide. The ownership structure of SAS was changed in June 2001, with a holding company being created in which the holdings of the governments changed to: Sweden (21.4%), Norway (14.3%) and Denmark (14.3%) and the remaining 50% publicly held and traded on the stock market.

Contemporary history (2004–present)[edit]

In 2004 Scandinavian Airlines System (SAS) was divided into four companies; SAS Scandinavian Airlines Sverige AB, SAS Scandinavian Airlines Danmark AS, SAS Braathens AS and SAS Scandinavian International AS. SAS Braathens was re-branded SAS Scandinavian Airlines Norge AS in 2007.[8] In October 2009 the four companies were once again united into one company, SAS Scandinavian System AB.

With the coming of low-cost airlines and decreasing fares in Scandinavia the business turned into the red. To be profitable again, the airline had to cut costs. In a first step the airline sold its stakes in other companies, such as bmi, Spanair and AirBaltic, and began to restructure its operations.[9][10][11] This was to save costs by about 23 percent between 2008 and 2011. The next big cost-cutting measure followed by the end of 2011. It should generate cost savings of another three to four percent until 2015. In June 2012 the airline announced that they will extend this measure.[12] In November 2012 the company came under heavy pressure from its owners and banks to implement even heavier cost-cutting measures as a condition for continued financial support. Negotiations with the respective trade unions took place for more than a week and exceeded the original deadline, but in the end SAS and the trade unions reached an agreement that would increase the worktime, cutting salary between 12-20%, pension and retirement plans, and thus keep the airline flying. SAS drew some criticism for how they handled the negotiations, in denying facilities to the union delegations.[13] As of November 2013, there was the expectation that the company would show 2013 as its first profitable year since 2007.[14]

Corporate affairs[edit]

Corporate offices[edit]

Scandinavian Airlines head office at Arlanda Airport

Scandinavian Airlines' head office is at Stockholm Arlanda Airport (ARN) in Sigtuna Municipality, Sweden.[15] The SAS Cargo Group A/S head office is in Kastrup, Tårnby Municipality, Denmark.[16]

Until 2011, the SAS head office, the SAS Frösundavik Office Building, was located in Frösundavik, Solna Municipality, Sweden, near Stockholm.[17][18] It was designed by Niels Torp Architects and built between 1985-1987. The move from Solna to Arlanda was completed in 2010.[19] A previous SAS head office was located on the grounds of Bromma Airport in Stockholm.[20]

Partners[edit]

Besides the agreements SAS has with its Star Alliance partners, SAS has strategic agreements with Lufthansa, Swiss, Austrian and United. The agreement includes code sharing and schedule coordination to facilitate improved connections between SAS and its partner airlines. SAS also co-operates with the other airlines in the SAS Group.

SAS has begun code-sharing with Shanghai Airlines, complementing its code-share arrangement with Air China.

Key business trends[edit]

The key trends for Scandinavian Airlines (which includes SAS Cargo, SAS Ground Handling and SAS Tech), but not including the SAS Group's 'individually branded airlines', for example Widerøe, are shown below:

2008 2009 2010 2011 2012
Jan-Oct
2013 2014
Nov-Jul
Turnover (SEKm) 47,536 39,696 36,524 36,735 33,148 38,889 27,040
Profits (EBT) (SEKm) −188 −1,522 −33 543 228 433* −468
Number of passengers (m) 25.4 21.4 21.5 22.9 21.7 25.4 19.5
Passenger load factor (%) 71.9 71.6 75.2 74.6 76.0 73.6 74.0
Total unit cost (CASK) (SEK) 0.94* 1.01* 0.95* 0.86* 0.81 0.76 0.75
Total unit revenue (RASK) (SEK) 0.91* 0.92* 0.86* 0.82* 0.84 0.80 -
Number of aircraft (at year end) 181 172 159 147 143 139 142
Number of employees (average for year) 16,286 14,438 13,723 13,479 13,591 12,884 12,352
Notes/sources *Figure for SAS Group [21] [21] [22] [23] [24][25] [26] [27]

(The company agreed in 2012 that its financial year would be 1 November – 31 October, instead of the calendar year.[28] The figures above are therefore for years ending 31 December until 2011, for the 10 months to 31 October 2012, and for years ending 31 October thereafter. The current financial year runs from 1 November 2013 – 31 October 2014.)

Destinations[edit]

Further information: SAS Group destinations
SAS destinations

Codeshare agreements[edit]

Scandinavian Airlines is one of the founding members of Star Alliance

Scandinavian Airlines has codeshare agreements with the following airlines:

Interline agreements[edit]

Scandinavian Airlines has interlining agreements with the following airlines:

City statistics[edit]

Oslo-Gardermoen has most daily departures and arrivals

These statistics about each of SAS hubs are current as of March 2014. (Ranked by daily departures).

Rank Airport Daily Departures Destinations Served
1 Oslo (OSL) 487 82
2 Copenhagen (CPH) 435 86
3 Stockholm (ARN) 410 73
4 Bergen (BGO) 129 49
5 Stavanger (SVG) 118 35
6 Trondheim (TRD) 116 44
7 Gothenburg (GOT) 57 17
8 Bodø (BOO) 55 19
9 Tromsø (TOS) 49 31
10 London (LHR) 31 5

Fleet[edit]

Current fleet[edit]

A Scandinavian Airlines A340-300 at Dubai International Airport in 2007.
Airbus A330-300 rolling during takeoff
Scandinavian's Airbus A321-200 at Hamburg Airport.

The Scandinavian Airlines fleet includes the following aircraft (as of July 2014):[33][34]

Scandinavian Airlines Fleet
Aircraft In Service Orders Options Passengers Notes
C Y M
Total
Airbus A319-100 4 0 0 141 141 "Christian Valdemar Viking" (OY-KBO) painted in retro livery[35]
Airbus A320-200 13 0 0 168 168
Airbus A320neo 30 11 0 0 168 168 Deliveries from 2016.
Airbus A321-200 8 0 0 198 198
Airbus A330-300 4 4[36] 34 35 195 264 LN-RKN painted in Star Alliance livery [37]
Deliveries from 2015.
Airbus A340-300 8 46
42
34
28
32
35
171
174
195
245
248
264
OY-KBM painted in Star Alliance livery.[38]
Airbus A350-900 8[36] 6 36 32 240 308 Deliveries from 2018.[39]
Boeing 737-600 27 0 0 123 123
Boeing 737-700 28 3 0 0 141 141
Boeing 737-800 29 0 0 181 181 LN-RRL and LN-RRW painted in Star Alliance livery [40]
Bombardier CRJ900 NextGen 12 0 0 88 88
Total 133 45 17

Future fleet plans[edit]

SAS has earlier stated that they plan to buy up to 55 new narrow-body aircraft to replace its McDonnell Douglas MD-80s and Boeing 737 Classics. But as a revised plan they will replace nine McDonnell Douglas MD-80s and eleven Boeing 737 Classics with seventeen leased Boeing 737 Next Generations. Seventeen McDonnell Douglas MD-80s will later be replaced by Airbus A320s.[41]

On 20 June 2011, SAS announced an order for 30 new A320 next generation aircraft as part of its fleet harmonisation plan. SAS had earlier announced that the fleet will be harmonized. Its short-range aircraft will consist of two types from 2015: Airbus A320 family at the base in Copenhagen, and Boeing 737NG at the bases in Stockholm and Oslo. As of May 2013, the McDonnell Douglas MD-80s have been reduced to six, of which all are based in Copenhagen. The airline intended to further reduce the number of aircraft down to five by July, and the last aircraft was to be withdrawn from service in late October 2013. There were six leased A320s in the SAS fleet at the beginning of May 2013.

McDonnell Douglas MD-82 taking off in 2007. All MD-80's were retired in 2013.
Boeing 737-700 in 2008.

As part of the transition, all the MD80s in Copenhagen will be replaced by leased Airbus A320 by the end of 2014. The leased A320s, in turn, will be replaced by 30 new A320neos beginning in 2016. Airbus A320 is very attractive in the market and the SAS Group expects to finance the aircraft through a combination of leases and loans.

All the MD80s at the base in Stockholm will be replaced by leased Boeing 737NGs, which will be completed during 2013. Finally all the Boeing 737 Classics at the base in Oslo will be replaced by Boeing 737NGs and this will be completed by the end of 2014. As of December 2013 all Boeing 737 Classics have been phased out and replaced by Boeing 737NG.

On 25 June 2013, SAS and Airbus signed a Memorandum of Understanding stating that SAS intends to buy twelve new-generation aircraft, including six options. The agreement consists of eight A350-900 with six options, and four A330-300E. The first new long haul aircraft to enter service will be the A330-300E, which will replace the aging A340-300 in 2015 as leasing agreements on these aircraft expire. The A350-900 is planned to enter service beginning in 2018. SAS has dubbed this “A total renewal of long haul fleet”, indicating that all former A340 and A330 will in fact be replaced.[42]

Removal of SAS Dash Q400 fleet[edit]

In September 2007, two separate incidents of similar landing gear failures occurred within four days of each other on SAS Dash 8-Q400 aircraft. A third incident occurred in October 2007. On 28 October 2007, in a move that was described as unique by the Swedish press, the board of directors announced that all 27 Dash 8 Q400 aircraft were to be removed from service due to three landing gear failures.[43]

A Bombardier CRJ900 NextGen at Copenhagen (2011)

A press release from SAS said that the company had reached a settlement with Bombardier and Goodrich, whereby the airline would receive SEK one billion as compensation, while SAS would purchase 27 new aircraft, with an option of 24 more. These aircraft will consist of 13 of the CRJ900 Nextgen (10 to SAS and 3 to Estonian Air) and 14 of the updated Q400 Nextgen units (8 to airBaltic and 6 to Widerøe), with 7 additional options.[44][45]

SAS received the first CRJ-900 on December 3, 2008, with others soon to follow. The CRJ900 fleet now consists of 12 aircraft.

SAS sold its original Bombardier Dash 8-Q400 fleet to Philippine Airlines for operation with subsidiary PAL Express, and also to Malev Hungarian Airlines.

Boeing 737-800 in 2007.

In November 2007, it was revealed that Swedish Civil Aviation Authority began an investigation and accused Scandinavian Airlines System of cutting corners for maintenance. The airline reportedly made 2,300 flights in which safety equipment was not up to standard.[46]

Livery[edit]

SAS planes look predominantly white, however, they are a very light beige with "Scandinavian" above the windows and "Airlines" below the windows in white lettering except for the belly which is actually white. The vertical stabilizers are blue with the traditional "SAS" logo on it. Also, the engine casing is painted in scarlet with the word Scandinavian in white, the thrust reversers are white. The typeface used is Rotis Semi Serif.

Services[edit]

Service classes[edit]

SAS offers two service classes for intra-European flights, an economy class called "SAS Go" and a premium economy class called "SAS Plus". SAS Plus tickets are refundable, and include a meal, a double checked-in baggage allowance, and access to lounges and fast track immigration/security at the airport. The SAS Plus passengers are seated at the front of the aircraft but the seats there are otherwise the same as the SAS Go seats. The two-class system was introduced in June 2013, when business class was eliminated from intra-European flights.[47]

For long-haul flights business class, called "SAS Business", is still offered and features wide sleeper seats. Further back the seats offered on SAS Plus are wider than those in the SAS Go section. Meals are served to all passengers on long-haul flights.

SAS offers a continental breakfast on all flights departing before 9 o'clock in the morning.

Lounges[edit]

The following locations are SAS Scandinavian, Stockholm, and Business locations:

Fingerprint biometric identification[edit]

In 2006, SAS Sweden launched a new biometric system for use throughout Sweden. Each passenger's fingerprints are, for security purposes, matched to their respective checked baggage. The new technology will be phased in at all the airports served by SAS, although use of the system is voluntary for passengers. The system has been introduced in Norway.[citation needed]

EuroBonus[edit]

SAS's frequent-flyer program is called EuroBonus. Members also earn points on other Star Alliance flights.

Fly Home Club[edit]

Fly Home Club was SAS's membership club for Scandinavians living in Spain. It has closed ever since economic conditions have worsened in Spain and as Scandinavians living in Spain have decided to return home or change locations.

Incidents and accidents[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Profile for SAS". Centre for Aviation. Archived from the original on 22 August 2012. Retrieved 22 August 2012. 
  2. ^ "Route map - SAS". Flysas.com. Retrieved 2014-03-17. 
  3. ^ Annual Report 2012 sasgroup.net Retrieved on 22 August 2013.
  4. ^ "Historie". SAS. 
  5. ^ SAS plans to sell Spanair and its stake in the British carrier bmi – International Herald Tribune
  6. ^ "SAS – press release (in Swedish)". Cision Wire. Retrieved 2009-01-30. 
  7. ^ Talks Collapse On European Airline Merger – International Herald Tribune
  8. ^ "Press Release: SAS Braathens to be renamed SAS Norge". Waymaker (via SAS Group Press Release Archive). Retrieved 2010-03-23. 
  9. ^ Nicholson, Chris V. (1 October 2009). "SAS Sells Remaining Stake in BMI to Lufthansa". New York Times. Retrieved 18 November 2012. 
  10. ^ Roberts, Martin; et al. (30 January 2009). "SAS sells Spanair for 1 euro, takes big charge". Reuters. Retrieved 18 November 2012. 
  11. ^ "Company history". airBaltic.com. airBaltic. Retrieved 18 November 2012. 
  12. ^ volaspheric: SAS cuts costs
  13. ^ "Nightmare for trade unions in Copenhagen". Dagens Industri. 19 November 2012. Retrieved 17 December 2012. 
  14. ^ Schultes, Renée (November 18, 2013). "Cloudy Skies Remain for Carrier SAS". Money & Investing. The Wall Street Journal. p. C6. 
  15. ^ "SAS Head Office in Sweden." Scandinavian Airlines. Retrieved on 27 January 2012. "SAS Head Office Stockholm-Arlanda Kabinvägen 5 SE-195 87 Stockholm"
  16. ^ "Headquarters." SAS Cargo. Retrieved on 27 January 2012. "Visiting address Kystvejen 40 DK-2770 Kastrup Denmark"
  17. ^ "SAS head office in Sweden." Scandinavian Airlines. Retrieved on 8 June 2009.
  18. ^ "Cykelkarta 2007." Solna Municipality. Retrieved on 12 February 2010.
  19. ^ "Interim Report January-June 2011." Retrieved 30 December 2012.
  20. ^ "World Airline Directory." Flight International. 29 March 1986. "Scandinavian Airlines System" 122.
  21. ^ a b "SAS Group Annual report 2009". SAS Group. Retrieved 7 September 2013. 
  22. ^ "Annual Report & Sustainability Report 2010". SAS Group. Retrieved 13 December 2011. 
  23. ^ "Annual Report & Sustainability Report 2011". SAS Group. Retrieved 24 August 2012. 
  24. ^ "SAS Group: Year-end report January – October 2012". SAS Group. Retrieved 30 December 2012. 
  25. ^ "SAS Group: Y4th Quarter 2012". SAS Group. Retrieved 7 Sep 2013. 
  26. ^ "SAS Group Year‐end report November2012 – October2013". SAS Group. Retrieved 14 March 2014. 
  27. ^ "SAS Group Interim Report November 2013 – July 2014". SAS Group. Retrieved 10 September 2014. 
  28. ^ "Resolutions approved by the 2012 Annual General Shareholders' Meeting of SAS AB". SAS Group. Retrieved 24 August 2012. 
  29. ^ SK-NH code share
  30. ^ SAS and Icelandair Begin Codeshare
  31. ^ "Boka biljett - NextJet" (in Swedish). Nextjet.se. Retrieved 2014-03-17. 
  32. ^ "AIR GREENLAND AND SAS ENTERS A NEW AND ENHANCED COOPERATION". Airgreenland.com. 2013-08-21. Retrieved 2014-03-17. 
  33. ^ 31 July 2013. "The SAS Group's fleet in traffic". sasgroup.net. Retrieved 2014-05-09. 
  34. ^ 13 February 2014. "SAS Fleet in Planespotters.net". planespotters.net. Retrieved 2014-02-13. 
  35. ^ OY-KBO painted in retro livery
  36. ^ a b 25 June 2013. "SAS selects eight A350 XWBs and four A330s | Airbus News & Events". Airbus..com. Retrieved 2013-06-25. 
  37. ^ SE-REF painted in Star Alliance livery
  38. ^ OY-KBM painted in Star Alliance livery
  39. ^ "SAS signs with Airbus: Total renewal of long haul fleet - SAS". News.cision.com. 2013-06-25. Retrieved 2014-03-17. 
  40. ^ LN-RRL painted in Star Alliance livery
  41. ^ Kinnander, Ola (26 November 2010). "Bombardier's C-Series Is Contender for 55-Plane SAS Order, Airline Says". Bloomberg. 
  42. ^ "SAS Group - Press". Se.yhp.waymaker.net. 2013-06-25. Retrieved 2014-03-17. 
  43. ^ SAS removes Dash 8 Q400 from service permanently
  44. ^ "News." Airliner World : 7.
  45. ^ SAS får en milliard i krasj-erstatning ("SAS gets a billion in crash compensation") e24.no 10 March 2008 (Norwegian)
  46. ^ "Plane crash disaster narrowly avoided." The Copenhagen Post, September 10, 2007. Retrieved: December 6, 2009.
  47. ^ Elliott, Mark. "SAS revamps cabin classes". Travel Daily Media. Retrieved 12 June 2013. 

External links[edit]

Media related to SAS Scandinavian Airlines at Wikimedia Commons

Company websites
Other websites