|Founded||17 February 1988(as Seoul Airlines)|
|Commenced operations||23 December 1988|
|Frequent-flyer program||Asiana Club|
|Destinations||90 (inc. cargo)|
|Traded as||KRX: 020560|
|Headquarters||Osoe-dong, Gangseo-gu, Seoul|
|Revenue||KRW 5,552 billion (2015)|
|Revised Romanization||Asiana Hanggong|
Asiana Airlines Inc. (Korean: 아시아나항공; Hanja: 아시아나航空; RR: Asiana Hanggong KRX: 020560; formerly Seoul Airlines) is South Korea's second-largest airline, behind Korean Air. Asiana is headquartered at the Asiana Town building in Seoul. In 2018, it accounted for a 19% share of the domestic market and a 16% share of the international market. The airline has its domestic hub at Gimpo International Airport and its international hub at Incheon International Airport (70 kilometres (43 mi) from central Seoul) and Gimhae International Airport.
As a member of Star Alliance, it operates 14 domestic and 90 international passenger routes, and 27 cargo routes throughout Asia, Europe, North America, and Oceania. As of December 2014, the company employs 10,183 people. The majority of Asiana's pilots, ground staff and flight attendants are based in Seoul. Asiana Airlines is the largest shareholder in Air Busan, a low-cost regional carrier joint venture with Busan Metropolitan City. The airline also holds 100% share of Air Seoul, a subsidiary and its own low-cost carrier.
Korean Air, which was acquired by Hanjin Transportation in 1969, had a monopoly on the South Korean airline industry until the establishment of Asiana in 1988. Asiana's formation did not come about as a policy initiative favoring liberalized market conditions but rather because of pressure from other chaebols and interests who wanted to compete. It was formed by the Kumho Asiana Group (formerly Kumho Group) and was originally known as Seoul Air International. Asiana was established on 17 February 1988 and started operations in December 1988 with flights to Busan. As of 2007 the airline was owned by private investors (30.53%), Kumho Industrial (29.51%), Kumho Petrochemical (15.05%), foreign investors (11.9%), Korea Development Bank (7.18%) and others (5.83%).
Beginning regular service
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Asiana began operations in December 1988, using Boeing 737 Classic aircraft, with flights to Busan and Gwangju. In 1989, Asiana began regular services to Jeju City, Gwangju, and Daegu and later the same year, Asiana began international chartered flights to Sendai in Japan. In 1990, Asiana began its first scheduled international services, to the Japanese cities of Tokyo, Nagoya, Sendai and Fukuoka. In the same year, Asiana had nine Boeing 747-400s, ten Boeing 767–300s and eight Boeing 737–400s. In early 1991, Asiana began services to Bangkok, Singapore, Hong Kong and Taipei. Transpacific flights to Los Angeles began in December 1991 with a Boeing 747-400 Combi. Services to Vienna, Brussels and Honolulu began in the mid-1990s. In 1993, Asiana began services to Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam.
Expansion as global carrier and joining Star Alliance
Asiana Airlines has rapidly expanded since its establishment in 1988 to become a mid-sized global carrier with a current fleet of 85 aircraft. In December 1998, the airline operated an aircraft on behalf of the president of South Korea for the first time. The airline was listed in KOSDAQ In December 1999. On 28 January 2003, the airline became a full Star Alliance member, expanding its worldwide network and global brand. In 2004, the airline added Airbus A330s and the Boeing 777-200ERs to its fleet, and expanded its routes into mainland China. Currently it provides international services to 71 cities in 23 countries on 91 routes and domestic services to 12 cities on 14 routes. It also provides international cargo services to 29 cities in 14 countries on 28 routes by Asiana Cargo, the airline's freight division. In 2012, the airline had net sales of US$5.3 billion.
New corporate identity
In February 2006, Asiana Airlines modernized its corporate identity for unification with those of other divisions of its parent company the Kumho Asiana Group. The names of the travel classes have changed from First Class, Business Class, and Economy Class to First, Business, and Travel classes respectively, and the colors of the travel classes have changed to yellow, blue and red for First, Business, and Travel Class, respectively. New uniforms were also created for the crew.
Asiana began to focus on being an environmentally friendly company in the mid-1990s and has put its efforts ever since in this regard, such as completely banning in-flight smoking and cigarette sales in 1995. The company was awarded first in class certification by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) for meeting criteria ISO 14001 in 1996. In 2001, Asiana Airlines was recognized for being the "first environmentally friendly company within the service industry" by the South Korean Ministry of Environment. Some of Asiana's other environmentally minded programs include an emissions measurement and reduction system; reducing pollution from ground facilities; and partnering with the Rainforest Alliance for coffee served on board.
On 17 February 2009, Air Transport World (ATW) awarded Asiana the "Airline of the Year" award, which is considered[by whom?] to be one of the most honorable awards in the airline industry. In May 2010, Asiana Airlines was named the best airline in the world by Skytrax at the 2010 World Airline Awards. Asiana came in second place behind Qatar Airways in 2011 and 2012.
Asiana Airlines is rated a "5 Star" airline by Skytrax.
Sale of Asiana Airlines began on July 2019. On June 2019, Aekyung Group, the parent company of Korea Low Cost Carrier Jeju Air, is considered as a strong candidate to take over. Korean Air's parent company, Hanjin Group, and SK Group are also considering taking over.
Moreover, Asiana Airlines has ended unprofitable routes throughout July 2019 to October 2019. Routes discontinued include Seoul–Incheon to Chicago–O'Hare, Delhi, Khabarovsk and Sakhalinsk.
On 25 July 2019, Kumho Asiana Group, the parent company of Asiana Airlines officially announces their intention to sell Asiana Airlines for an estimated price of 1.5 trillion won to 2 trillion won (US$1.26 billion to 1.68 billion). Asiana Airlines mergers and acquisitions includes subsidiary Air Busan, Air Seoul, Asiana IDT and other subsidiary companies. Subsequent due diligence is expected to be carried out and the main bidding is expected to begin as early as October or November. AeKyeong Group, the parent company of Korean low-cost carrier Jeju Air, has expressed interest in acquiring Asiana Airlines.
On 4 September 2019, Aekyung Group, Mirae Asset Daewoo and KCGI (Korea Corporate Governance Improvement) applied a letter of intent to acquire Asiana Airlines. On 12 November, a consortium of HDC Hyundai Development Company and Mirae Asset Daewoo was selected as the preferred bidder.
The airline has its headquarters in Asiana Town (아시아나타운) in Osoe-dong, Gangseo-gu, Seoul. The airline's head office moved from Hoehyeon-dong, Jung District to Asiana Town in Osoe-dong on 1 April 1998.
Asiana Airlines serves destinations on four continents with an Asian network that includes important cities in the People's Republic of China, Japan, Southeast Asia and Central Asia. The airline serves a number of gateway cities in North America and Europe while retaining a limited coverage of Oceania.
Asiana Cargo, the airline's only cargo subsidiary, also has a wide network, especially in Europe and the United States.
Asiana decided to launch Air Seoul, the airline's second subsidiary and its own low-cost carrier, based in Incheon International Airport, and transfer some of its unprofitable routes to the subsidiary from November 2016.
- Air Astana
- Air Busan (Subsidiary)
- Air Canada
- Air China
- Air India
- Air Macau
- Air New Zealand
- Air Seoul (Subsidiary)
- All Nippon Airways
- Austrian Airlines
- China Southern Airlines
- Copa Airlines
- Croatia Airlines
- Ethiopian Airlines
- Etihad Airways
- EVA Air
- Hong Kong Airlines
- LOT Polish Airlines
- Myanmar Airways International
- Qatar Airways
- S7 Airlines
- Shandong Airlines
- Shenzhen Airlines
- Singapore Airlines
- South African Airways
- Thai Airways
- Turkish Airlines
- United Airlines
|Airbus A321-200||15||—||—||12||—||159||171||One in Star Alliance livery.|
|Airbus A350-900||11||10||—||28||36||247||311||Deliveries to 2025.|
Order with 10 options.
|Boeing 747-400||1||—||10||24||—||364||398||To be retired in 2024.|
|Boeing 767-300||6||—||—||15||—||235||250||One in Star Alliance livery.|
To be retired in 2024.
|Boeing 777-200ER||9||—||—||22||—||278||300||One in Star Alliance livery.|
|Asiana Cargo fleet|
|Boeing 747-400BDSF||7||—||Converted from passenger aircraft|
The company has previously operated the following aircraft:
|Boeing 737-400||22||1988||2013||Airbus A320 family|
|4||Transferred to subsidiary Air Busan.|
|3||Transferred to subsidiary Air Busan.|
|1||1992||1993||None||Crashed as flight OZ733|
|Boeing 747-400M||6||1991||2017||Airbus A350 XWB|
|Boeing 767-300ER||9||1991||2006||Airbus A330-300|
Asiana Airlines offers five classes of services – First Suite class, First Class, Business Smartium class, Business class and Travel (economy) class. Seat configurations and in-flight entertainment systems vary by the type of the aircraft and its operating routes
First Suite class is offered on A380-800, which is serviced on routes to Los Angeles, New York City, Sydney and Frankfurt. Old First Class is available on Boeing 747-400s. Both First Suite and old First Class were available on Boeing 777s, but was later removed in favor of a two-class configuration. Passengers in these classes are offered pajamas, souvenirs and "amenity kits" containing items such as skin cream, toothpaste, eye shades and earplugs. A passenger can pre-order in-flight meals 48 hours prior to departure. First class seats are equipped with personal AVOD systems.
Besides those routes, most of Asiana's international flights offer two type of classes – business smartium class or business class as the highest class and travel class, without first class. Some of the short-length international flights and charter flights are operated by mono-class basis, as well as all of the airline's domestic flights. Business Smartium Class is installed on Boeing 777-200ER, and Business Class is installed on Boeing 767 and A330, but some of the A330 is equipped with newly furbished cocoon seats. Most of Asiana's Travel class seats also have television or video systems. AVOD is installed on many of the aircraft and business class is fully equipped with new AVODs. In-flight entertainment systems are not offered on domestic routes, which consist of flights of an hour or less.
Asiana offers two in-flight magazines, Asiana (a travel magazine) and Asiana Entertainment.
Asiana Club is Asiana Airline's frequent-flyer program, formerly Asiana Bonus Club. Asiana Club has five tiers: Silver, Gold, Diamond, Diamond Plus and Platinum. To acquire or maintain each tier, members are required to accrue 0, 20000, 40000, 100000 miles in two calendar years from the 'reference date'. Status miles are based on 'On-board mileage', which includes miles accumulated by traveling with Asiana Airlines or Star Alliance airlines. Also, members can accrue miles by flying 'partner airlines' such as Qatar Airways. Miles accumulated in the program entitle members to bonus tickets, class upgrades and other products and services such as dining at Outback Steakhouse.
Asiana has endorsement deals with the following:
- Park Ji-Sung – Manchester United ambassador
- K. J. Choi – Professional golfer
- Yang Yong-eun – Professional golfer
- Chan-Ho Park – ex-MLB pitcher
- YG Entertainment – record label and talent agency
- KBS Symphony Orchestra
- Korea National Ballet
Accidents and incidents
- On 26 July 1993, Asiana Airlines Flight 733, a Boeing 737–500 (HL7229) crashed in poor weather about four kilometres short of the runway in Mokpo while making its third landing attempt on runway 06 at Mokpo Airport. Two of the six crew members and 66 of the 110 passengers on board were killed.
- On 11 November 1998, an Asiana Airlines Boeing 747-400 was attempting a U-turn in the gate area of Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport, when the tip of its wing collided with the tail of an Ilyushin Il-62M belonging to Aeroflot. No one was injured. Asiana was subsequently sued by Aeroflot and the Il-62M was written off.
- On 28 July 2011, Asiana Airlines Cargo Flight 991, a Boeing 747-400F bound for Shanghai Pudong Airport from Incheon Airport, crashed into the Pacific Ocean off Jeju Island, South Korea, after reporting a fire in the cargo compartment. Both pilots were killed.
- On 6 July 2013, Asiana Airlines Flight 214, a Boeing 777-200ER (HL7742), crashed short of the runway while landing at San Francisco International Airport, due to pilot error, killing 3 of the 307 passengers on board. Two of the fatally injured passengers were not wearing their seat belts and were ejected from the aircraft during the crash. The third died in hospital a week after the incident as a result of her injuries. On 25 February 2014, Asiana Airlines was fined $500,000 by the U.S. Department of Transportation for "failing to promptly contact passengers' families and keep them informed about their loved ones" during and after the crash.
- On 14 April 2015, Asiana Airlines Flight 162, an Airbus A320 (HL7762), crash landed short of the runway at Hiroshima Airport, Japan. The aircraft spun 180 degrees and eventually stopped on the runway with a fractured wing, damage to the left engine and all landing gear collapsed. The aircraft was operating an international scheduled passenger flight from Incheon International Airport, Seoul, South Korea. More than 20 of the 82 people on board were injured. The aircraft was written off.
- Transport in South Korea
- List of companies of South Korea
- List of airlines of South Korea
- List of airports in South Korea
- List of Asian airline holding companies
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