History of Austria Airlines at JFK

1. Return to JFK:

Two decades after Austrian Airlines launched the original, but unsuccessful, transatlantic service to New York – a joint operation with its Belgian Belgian Airways grandfather, inaugurated on April 1, 1969 with a registered Boeing 707-320 OE-LBA stop in Brussels – She returned to the United States on March 26, 1989, this time with Airbus OE-LAA Sports Registration A-310-300. The event not only featured intercontinental service and its lane system, but also a wide aircraft with its first three-class cabin configuration. Unlike the previous experience, it proved successful, but marked the beginning of two more decades of flexibility, paved with a number of aircraft types, alliances and strategies of its member Airlines, terminals, handling companies and computer systems, that’s her story.
2. JFK Station Evolution:

The initial training, held at Austrian Airlines North America headquarters in Wheatstone, New York, and delivered by Peter “Luigi & Hubert”, began February 6, 1989, or six weeks prior to the inaugural flight, and its curriculum included “Passenger Care” “And the Adius check-in courses.”

Austrian Airlines’ first JFK location, the east wing of the no longer existing International Entrance Building, was a joint facility with Iceland and encompassed five Austria-specific check-in counters equipped with computers, automatic internal printers, and laser scanning. Luggage Tag Printers, and the Joint Upper Party Saga Lounge.

Employees were fully employed and trained by Austrians and equipped with their uniforms, his team performed all onshore duties: passenger services, ticket sales orders, lost and found, load control, management, supervision and management, while Icelandair staff served on the ramp, aircraft and cargo service supervision, Cargo and mail loading.

However, the success of the operation relied on the equipment that served it and it was only Airbus Industry’s decision to offer a lower-capacity, lower-capacity body version of its A-300 signature that transformed the transatlantic operation returned with the A- 310.

A long-range, dual-engine, wide-width design of technology at the same time offered the same dual-range range and comfort as the fourth-engine 747 or trunk DC-10 and L-1011, but at the same time offered reduced capability to Facilitate profitable operations throughout the year. Because of the larger market size of Austria, the larger 747, DC-10 or L-1011 would operate at a loss out of the summer travel peak season. Each of the other long-range planes, including the Boeing 707 and McDonald-Douglas DC-8, introduced first-stage, first-generation, fuel-efficient four-phase technology with four engines in the early 1960s and would have been banned from service unless replaced or replaced. Completely in the engine. The A-310 greatly enabled the long and tight route area of ​​Austria Airlines.

The initial 1989 schedule offered six weekly frequencies during the summer and five in the winter, during which two A-310-300s served New York and Tokyo, the latter with a stopover in Moscow. Alternatively, they have also increased the longer-term routes, such as those for Tel Aviv, Istanbul and Tehran.

During the first six months of JFK operations, aircraft never experienced excessive delay due to timing, which resulted in exemplary performance on time.

In-flight service naturally represented a large portion of the airline’s expenses. As a result, many suppliers have begun to reduce this to reduce costs. Austrian Airlines, however, remains unique all over the world characterized by snacks and paper cups by providing printed menus, convenience kits, china service, alcoholic beverages, and headphones in the carriages of its transatlantic flights to and from Vienna.

However, due to the A-310’s short aircraft, the cargo area with the lower deck was limited, with the forward grip usually containing cargo load units (ULDs) and the rear cargo itself, often limited to two pallets and a single unit AKE.

Although load factors in the New York-Vienna area were initially low, they increased steadily until most flights were full. Large tour groups formed a growing part of the mix of passengers, along with the expected connecting passengers, who were able to take advantage of the expanding Vienna hub. This was ultimate testimony to the carrier when a passenger chose to fly with him and establish a connection at her home airport versus nonstop travel with a national carrier.

As a “second attempt” across the Atlantic, the Austrian airline’s intercontinental airline service to New York eventually succeeded.

With the purchase of the third listed A-310-300, OE-LAC, Austrian Airlines thought of servicing another US gateway in the spring of 1991, such as Los Angeles, but the duration of the A-310-300 flight for 11 hours prevented reality this. Although Chicago is considered an alternate, Boeing 767-200ER non-stop service to American to Vienna would have banned competition, as Oher was the second-largest hub, leaving Washington-Dulles as a possible alternative.

For the European continental network, the gross weight delivery of McDonnell-Douglas MD-83 was ordered for delivery in 1991 and some existing MD-81 were converted to this standard, increasing their range and load capabilities. Two more Fokker F.50s were booked for long and thin international domestic routes.

During the five years between 1989 and 1994, Austrian Airlines operated independently at JFK and offered at least four weekly departures during the winter and some seven during the summer.

3. Share airline code of sharing:

Changing market conditions led to Austria a different strategy at JFK. For example, when seeking to align a line with a domestic airline in the United States to obtain feeds for its transatlantic flights, it entered into a marketing agreement with Delta Air Lines in 1994, setting its two-letter “operating system” code for Delta operators. While Delta itself has reciprocally placed its DL designer from Austria’s services, two Delta flight attendants, dressed in their company uniform, initially served in its A-310 cabins to and from Vienna.

Although the financial benefit of the concept is slow to materialize, eventually the planes achieved high load factors, carrying Austria and Delta passengers from two dozen US cities through New York to Vienna, most often without passage.

To reduce land handling costs and gain synergistic benefits between freight companies, Austrian Airlines moved its operations to Delta 1 Terminal (later redesigned Terminal 2) on July 1, 1994, retaining only nine of its original 21 crew. Delta Air Lines, the new leader in land management, placed the responsibility for arrivals, lost and found, passenger check-in, exit gate, ramp and luggage room, while Austrian itself continued to carry its own tickets, load control, management positions, Supervision and management.

1994 also marked the acquisition of two long-haul four-engine A-340-200s configured for 36 passengers in the tourist department and OE-LAG and OE-LAH registration. They occasionally served New York for the next decade.

Another change occurred three years later, between February 1997 and 1998, when she moved the check-in counters and its executive office to the terminal 3 door, but otherwise remained in the same marketing alliance.

This year also marked the first time the New York transatlantic ripened enough to support a second port on select days during the summer schedule, with this second flight arriving in 2045 and relocating toward 2205. Typically operated by OE-LAC aircraft, A-310 With a business segment, but with a higher capacity, facilitated contacts with the exit bank from Vienna.

4. Atlantic Excellence:

Once again, after succumbing to airline regulatory deletion and attempting to achieve additional cost-reduction synergies, Austrian Airlines combined its JFK operations with its Grandpa Belgie World Airways and Swissair on March 1, 1998, to form the tri-Atlantic Alliance. Although the employees of the three airlines continued to wear their respective uniforms, they operated from single passenger service and load control offices, using a joint Austrian check-in, Sabana and Swissair facility, and handled each other’s flights.

During the summer season, seven daily departures were operated by four airlines, including two to Vienna with Austrian Airlines, two to Brussels with Delta and Sabana, one to Switzerland with Swissair, and two to Zurich, also with Swissair.

Eight functions were performed at the station of excellence in Atlantic, including control, arrivals, departures, VIP / special services, ticket sales orders, load control, ramp monitoring, and fault shooting. As Swissair’s contract to prepare load sheets for flights from Central Hungarian Airlines to Budapest, the load control function itself included handling six types of aircraft – 747-300s, A-340-200 / -300s, MD-11s, A-330-200s, 767- 200ERs and A-310-300s – often require inter-carrier training.

As was the case with Austrian Airlines, Delta has similarly agreed to two-letter code sharing agreements with Sabana and Swaysair, but has now taken the former marketing arrangement into a full alliance at the significantly growing JFK flight center. Delta nevertheless continued to provide laundry and luggage functions for all three Atlantic Excellence airlines.

In August of that year, Austrian Airlines received the first of four longer-range A-330-200 ranges, received OE-LAM and was set up for 30 business travelers and 235 tourist class, and the type eventually replaced the A-310 300 as her intercontinental workhorse. The four planes, which later operated with a small, 24-seat business cabin with the presentation of the Grand Class concept, joined sports listings OE-LAM, OE-LAN, OE-LAO and OE-LAP.

During the 1998 summer schedule, Austrian fielded the first JFK dual-aircraft type operation, with the first port normally operated by the A-330 and the second by the A-310.

5. Star Alliance:

Although envisioning the ultimate “Swiss solution”, under which all Atlantic Excellence’s onshore operations team was delivered to the service provider, the event never happened.

Rumors, running around the station like subtle warnings of a pending storm, swept the atmosphere in mid-1999. A new strategy looming on the horizon and its seeds, planted long before it bloomed, seemed multi-faceted and encompassed.

In June 1999, Delta Air Lines and Air France formed the basis of a new global alliance, later called SkyTeam, thus melting the 25-month Austrian / Delta / Sabana / Swissair Atlantic Excellence agreement, which was agreed, without re-negotiation, In August 2000.

Despite a ten percent investment limit, Switzerland nevertheless attempted to acquire additional shares of Austrian Airlines, preventing Austrian’s goal of maintaining its identity and independence, forcing it to withdraw from Europe’s leading provider of Qualiflyer Swissair.

Swissair and Sabana set up an integrated commercial management structure, which again proved to be a direction for the independent airlines of Austrian Airlines.

Finally, in early 2000, both Sabana and Swissair signed code-sharing agreements with American Airlines, a US airline system that runs counter to Austria Airlines’ strategy of entering the United States.

As a small but profitable international leader of considerable quality, Austrian Airlines nevertheless needed a global alliance to remain profitable and thus signed a corporate agreement with the Star Alliance Lufthansa and United Freight, which came into effect on March 26, 2000.

The largest and longest alliance then consisted of Air Canada, Air New Zealand, All of Nippon, Austrian Australia, Austrian Airlines, British Midland, Lauda Air, Lufthansa, Mexico, SAS, Thailand Airways International, Tyrolean, United, and Varig, carrying 23 percent. From the world’s passenger movement. More importantly, the decision made for continued identity and independent operation, but there was potential for expansion. The decision, expressed as sentiment, was said to be “here we grow again!”

The transition from Atlantic Excellence to the Star Alliance, which began in January 2000, entailed four integral changes.

1). An entirely new IT system (information technology) and a frequent flight plan.

2). The operational transition to a new terminal, the passenger service office, the passenger check-in desk, control aircraft launch center, and JFK gate.

3) Code-sharing flights with new airlines and traffic feeds have resulted in the closure of Atlanta Station and Chicago’s next opening and reopening of Washington in the US.

4). Immigration training throughout the company in Oberla, Austria, the location of the Austrian Airlines head office.

Star Alliance companies, once again beyond Terminal 1 at JFK, led another change in vendor handling, this time from Delta to Lufthansa, which has now performed the luggage services and check-in functions, while the Austrian itself continued to operate in entrances, ticketing, load control, Ramp supervision and management. As part of a mutual agreement, it also provided these passenger services to Lufthansa for its own Frankfurt departures during idle hours. Aircraft loading and luggage functions were initially performed by Hudson General, later renamed GlobeGround North America.

In another cost-reduction strategy, Austria Airlines moved to a smaller passenger service office on the ground floor of Terminal 1 on September 2002, when the Lufthansa ramp / ramp function was assigned. No longer served Lufthansa flights, Austrian crews dwindled further, now to six full-time and two part-time jobs, and daily shift hours reduced from nine to eight.

Austria’s large-capacity aircraft, the A-340-300 – which accommodated 30 passengers from business and 261 passengers in the tourist department – also alternately provided service to JFK, especially during the summer 2002 schedule where a late Saturday departure was scheduled. Two such aircraft, registered OE-LAK and OE-LAL, now form part of the fleet.

6. Swissport USA:

The continuing need to reduce costs has further transformed JFK treatment companies on January 1, 2003, with most of the land services being transferred from Lufthansa to Swissport in the US.

Ahead of the change, Swissport’s passenger services team participated in a checkout course in Vienna the previous month, while Swissport, which established its luggage services department, attended the World Tracer Basic course later this year, in October.

The Swiss Sports Team, equipped with Austrian Airlines uniform, performed the arrival, lost and found functions, check-in, passengers, exit gate, load control and ramp control, while Austrian itself continued to take responsibility for ticket sales , Management, supervision and management. .

Load control, initially carried out at Terminal 4 through the SwissS DCS system, was eventually transferred to Terminal 1 and the Lufthansa-Wab system after Swissport operationsmen completed a computerized load control course in Vienna that March.

7. North American Station Training Program:

Because most Swiss agents had little prior experience with an airline, and as a result were unfamiliar with Austrian Airlines products and procedures, the author created a local training program by formulating course descriptions, writing textbooks, defining quizzes and exams, studying the courses themselves and subsequently issuing the training certificates. In order to prepare them more for their work.

The program, which tracks its routes to the Austrian Airlines Regulation Course created in 1989 and the introductory load control training manual written in 1998, evolved into the full-service North American Station Training Program, whose content was updated according to aircraft, system, procedure and ally, the four curricula included “Initial passenger service”, “ramp inspection certification”, “load control licensing” and “aviation management”.

Ultimately encompassing 27 passenger service instructions, ramp supervision, load control, air cargo, and aviation station management, two station histories, and 28 curricula, this resulted in 63 courses being taught to Austria Airlines and to Austrian airlines handling an airline. , Lufthansa, Passenger Care Services / Maca, SAS, Servair and Swissport at eight North American stations in Atlanta, Cancun, Chicago, Montreal, New York, Punta Cana, Toronto and Washington.

The program, which quickly evolved into the equivalent of “Aviation University” and was often cited as a reason why Swissport people were eager to transfer to Austrian Airlines, proved to be a tool in their career, facilitating or accepting it by other airlines. .

8. Boeing and Lauda Air to JFK:

JFK, which has so far served exclusively by Austrian Airlines and its fleet of A-310, A-330 and A-340 aircraft, has received the first regularly launched Lauda Air 767 during Summer 2004, a provider founded by Formula Racing I drove the Nicki Lauda car and was considered an Austrian Airlines competitor during the early part of its history. However, in the following year its frequency quadrupled and during 2007 it completely replaced the 17-year-old Airbus service.

Lauda 767 in the summer of 2004, operating as a supplement to the daily Austrian frequency during the 11-week period, from June 26 to September 5, was scheduled to arrive at 2055 on Saturday evenings and depart 25 hours later at 2200 on Sunday.

In order to prepare the station for the additional service, local Boeing 767 passenger services and Boeing 767 load control courses were created and transferred to Swissport personnel.

Because Lufthansa technical staff did not hold 767 licenses, its maintenance was deferred to Delta Air Lines, which operated all 767-series, 200, -300 and 400 series, and there was an extensive night stop and security before the aircraft was pushed. Back to one terminal’s hard status, where security seals were applied to all access doors. Charged cargo equipment was washed and prepared the next evening.

Due to the capacity of the then 36-passenger Amadeus Class aircraft, the late exit was difficult to sell in the business booth without considerable marketing promotion and reduced fare, while cargo space loading was limited to four doors in the front compartment. The planes themselves operated with a combination of heavy Lauda Air and Star Alliance stars.

During the summer 2005 schedule, from June 14 to September 2, 767-300 provided up to four additional weekly frequencies, resulting in a total of 11, with the A-330 correcting the early and late 767-300 departures. .

By 2007, the type had completely replaced the A-330 and A-340 fleets, but appeared in several configurations. OE-LAE, -LAY and -LAZ planes, for example, were accommodated in 36 businesses and 189 in economics, while those listed OE-LAX and LAW respectively exhibited 30 and 200 seats. The OE-LAT jets, which offered the highest capacity of the six, included ten additional seats from the last two, for the completion of a 240-passenger train.

9. Central load control:

At the end of 2006, a concept known as the Central Load Control System (CLC) was introduced at JFK, and the station, like the atomic nucleus, became the core of everything.

Michael Steinbugg’s brain, then JFK station manager, procedure, following trends set by Swiss International in New York, Lufthansa in Cape Town, and SAS in Bangkok, stemmed from a case in a previous research project that investigated cost reduction measures by a large and single load control department in Vienna or regional departments . The latter, however, involved language and time barriers.

Having gained extensive experience in creating procedures and operational practices as a former Aircraft Care Manager, he is well versed in weight and balance issues.

He sought to apply this knowledge and at the same time try to correct the adjustment and communication difficulties encountered in the SAS-Bangkok settlement in Washington, he first dealt with this station, which, like JFK, already used the Lufthansa-WAB system. During the process, he set the path for the many crossings to come by taking a number of mandatory trips to determine local procedures that match stations and then drafting a detailed pamphlet pertaining to them. The first Concentration Load Sheet for Washington Flight, OS 094, was created on November 1, 2006.

Charlie Schreiner, then head of Austria Airlines’ load control, signaled the event afterwards by sending the following telex.

“With the Austrian Airlines 094 operating system flight on November 1,” he wrote, “our first line station was connected to a standard centralized load control process with ULDs. All activities for operational flight preparation, load planning, ULD coordination and WAB system documentation , Including the load sheet transferred to the cockpit via ACAR, was successfully controlled by our JFK station yesterday. ”

However, the balance of the CLC program included a phase implementation. In May of the following year, the service was inaugurated from Chicago. Since it could now be considered a “new” station, it made sense that its load sheet would be integrated into the CLC system in the first place, and despite computer system differences, was successfully adjusted with the first flight on May 29 after procedural changes.

When these cities were addressed by JFK, it was decided to incorporate the last North American station, Toronto, whose first major load sheet was issued on July 1.

Three dedicated load controllers for Austrian Airlines from Swissport, two of whom worked on a given day during the summer peak season, set up the Central Load Control System team.

Since the integration of the fourth station, JFK has produced about 120 load sheets a month, and the most successful system has produced many advantages.

First and foremost, it generated considerable savings. כל הטיסות יצאו בזמן ביחס לתוכנית העומס שלהן והכנות גיליון העומס וכל ארבע הטיסות בצפון אמריקה טופלו באופן מבצעי על ידי בקר עומס יומי אחד בלבד יותר ממה ש JFK השתמשה לצורך יציאה יחידה. כל דוחות הוראות הטעינה וגיליונות העומס נוצרו בנוסף על ידי מערכת Lufthansa-WAB, מה שמעניק לוינה גישה מיידית לכל הנתונים והתיעוד הקשור בבקרת עומס.

10. בואינג 777:

כאשר אוסטריאן איירליינס הפכה את הדף של לוח הזמנים של חורף 2008-2009 ב -29 במרץ, JFK שדה את פעולת בואינג 777-200ER הראשונה שלה, מטוס הקיבולת הגדול ביותר של הספק והסוג הבסיסי החמישי ששירת את ניו יורק אחרי ה- A-310, ה- A -330, ה- A-340, וה- 767.

המטוס, שנרכש במקור על ידי לאודה אייר, הוגדר עבור 49 מחלקות עסקים ו -258 נוסעי רכבות, אם כי שתי דוגמאות מאוחרות יותר, בהן היו משקולות ברוטו גבוהות יותר וסידורי נוסעים מותאמים, התאכסנו ב 260 נוסעים במחלקת תיירים בעשר עד שלוש, ארבע-ארבע -שלושה, תצורות.

במהלך ששת החודשים האחרונים שבין אפריל לספטמבר 2009, הטיסה היחידה הובילה 34 אחוז יותר נוסעים מגיעים ויוצאים, יחד עם השלמות מוגברות משמעותית של מטען ודואר, בהשוואה לתקופה המקבילה אשתקד, בה נעשה שימוש ב- 767. ארבעת 777 הנמצאים בצי היו OE-LPA, OE-LPB, OE-LPC ו- OE-LPD.

11. רכישה של לופטהנזה:

שנת 2009 הייתה שנה מרכזית עבור חברת אוסטריה איירליינס, הן מקומית והן כלל מערכתית. בגלל ההאטה הכלכלית העולמית, עליית מחירי הדלק, שחיקת התשואות והתחרות החזקה במערב אירופה מצד ספקי עלות נמוכה, איים על הכדאיות הפיננסית שלה והמשך קיומה כחברה, למרות אסטרטגיות קודמות שכללו מכירת A-330 ו- A- צי 340, מצמצם את מערך התוואי שלו לטווח הארוך, ויישם מספר תוכניות ארגון מחדש. המושיע שלה, בצורה של הסכם עם לופטהנזה-גרמנית איירליינס, איפשר לה להמשיך לפעול, שכן היא לקחה על עצמה את חובה ורכשה את מרבית מניותיה.

ב -28 באוגוסט אישרה הנציבות האירופית באופן רשמי את רכישת לופטהנזה-גרמנית איירליינס את קבוצת אוסטרינס איירליינס. האסטרטגיה, שהורכבה מכ -500 מיליון יורו מחברת האחזקות המוצהרת הדרושה לארגון מחדש והמיזוג בין שני המובילים, סללה את הדרך להשתלבותה של אוסטריה במפלס לופטהנזה עד ספטמבר. אולם כדי להשיג את החסינות נגד ההגבלים העסקיים, לופטהנזה עצמה נאלצה להסכים לוותר על משבצות טיסות מפתח ולהקטין את מספר השירותים בין וינה לבריסל, קלן, פרנקפורט, מינכן ושטוטגרט.

עבור חברת אוסטריאן איירליינס, אשר תהפוך לאחת ממובילי הרכזת העצמאיים האירופאים של לופטהנזה, היא סימנה את ההישרדות הכספית, תשתית כלכלית משופרת, עלויות סינרגיה, כמו רכישת דלק משותף וכלי טיס, וגישה לרשת המכירות והנתיבים הבינלאומית הרחבה של לופטהנזה. הקמת וינה כמרכז ביצועים גבוהים להזנת תנועה למערכת התוואי הצפופה במרכז ומזרח אירופה הצפויה של בעליה החדשה, נחשבה לעוצמתה של אוסטריה בתוך המערכת.

כתוצאה מבעלות זו התרחשו גם שינויים מהותיים בצפון אמריקה.

בטורונטו ובוושינגטון, למשל, לקחה לופטהנזה את כל היבטי הטיפול בקרקע.

בניו יורק פוטרו יותר ממחצית הצוות המועסק במטה צפון אמריקה בוויטסטון, ואילו המתקן שלו, שנמצא בקומה החמישית של אוקטגון פלאזה ונחשב ל”מבצר “שלו כמעט רבע מאה, היה סגור , עם עובדיה הנותרים לעבור למשרד אחו המזרחי של לופטהנזה בלונג איילנד.

ב- JFK עצמה, אוסטריאן איירליינס קרגו עברה באותה מידה למתקן לופטהנזה ב -1 בנובמבר, ו -16 יום לאחר מכן העבירה שוויצ'פורט את הלפיד לטיפול בקרקע לחברת לופטהנזה-גרמנית איירליינס.

מיכאל שטיינבוגל, מנהל התחנה במשך ארבע שנים, הועלה למנהל חשבון מפתח בצפון אמריקה, אך ארבע עמדות לשמירת מכירת כרטיסים הוחלפו כאשר לוקתנזה קיבלה את התפקידים הללו והפחיתה את צוות האוסטרלי איירליינס לשני חברים בלבד ( המחבר כלל), שקיבלו חוזים מוגבלים של שישה חודשים שפג תוקפם ב -15 במאי 2010. השתלבו לסירוגין במבצע ולוח הזמנים של לופטהנזה, הם טיפלו בטיסותיהם תוך היכרות עם עובדי לופטהנזה את הנהלים שלהם, אך לאחר תקופת מעבר זו, היו שוחרר באותה מידה מעבודה

“נוכחות אחידה אדומה” של אוסטריה איירליינס האחרונה, בין אם מיוצגה על ידי אנשי אוסטריה איירליינס בלבד או אנשי סוויספורט, התרחשה ב- 15 בנובמבר, והמשרד בקומה הראשונה בטרמינל 1, עד כה “בית” לניהול המוביל, שירות הנוסעים, עומס מרכזי בקרה, הזמנות ומכירת כרטיסים ושירותי מזוודות / מחלקות אבודות ונמצאו, הוותר לשלושה שולחנות במתקן לופטהנזה, שניים מהם היו תחנות ניהול חובות הממוקמות במפלס הראשי ואחת מהן שמורה לתפקיד מנהל חשבון מפתח. במפלס התחתון במשרד פעולות התחנה.

נראה כי כל הדברים באים למחזור. האירוע, שהסתיים למעשה 21 שנים של נוכחות אוסטרית איירליינס האוטונומית, סימן את שובו של המוביל לשילובו ב -1938 עם לופטהנזה ובסידור 2000 הקרקע שלו ב- JFK.

12. חוזקות תחנת JFK:

בשנת 2009 הפעילה אוסטריאן איירליינס 666 טיסות הגעה ויציאה ב- JFK ונשאה 158,267 נוסעים פנימה ויוצאת, גידול של 18.42 אחוזים בהשוואה לנתון הקודם, בעוד שהיא הפעילה 5,005 טיסות הגעה ויציאה וסחבה 1,074,642 נוסעים במהלך שבע השנים בתקופת השנה, בין 2003 ל -2009, שוויצ'ספורט ארה”ב קיבלה את הטיפול בקרקע בה.

JFK, לאחר שביאה את מזג האוויר בכמה בריתות תעופה, מיקומי טרמינל, מערכות מחשב, חברות טיפול, סוגי מטוסים, ומספר הולך וגדל של אנשי אוסטריאן איירליינס במשך נוכחותה בת 21 השנים האחרונות, סגר למעשה את שעריה, אחרון תחנות צפון אמריקה שלה עשית זאת.

לאורך הנוכחות של למעלה משני עשורים היא טיפלה בחמישה סוגי מטוסים – איירבוס A-310, איירבוס A-330, איירבוס A-340, בואינג 767, ובואינג 777; נקט ארבע אסטרטגיות – הפעולה הראשונית והעצמאית שלה; הסכם השיתוף עם קוד Delta Air Lines; תחנת המשאית אטלנטיק אקסלנס; והאינטגרציה של Star Alliance; פעלו מארבעה מסופי JFK – טרמינל אחד, טרמינל שני, טרמינל שלוש ובניין ההגעה הבינלאומי; טופלו על ידי שלוש חברות – דלתא אייר ליינס, לופטהנזה-גרמני איירליינס וסוויצ'פורט ארה”ב; והשתמש בשתי מערכות מחשב.

מכיוון שכישוריהם ויכולותיהם של רבים מאנשי הצוות שלה הופנו לתוצאות יצירתיות וחדשניות במהלך הפרק האחרון לקיומה, JFK קבעה כמה הישגים שחלקם אפשרו למלא תפקיד גרעיני יותר ויותר בצפון אמריקה. ניתן לחלק אותם באופן הבא.

תוכנית ההדרכה של תחנת צפון אמריקה, שהורכבה משירותי הנוסעים, הסמכת פיקוח על רמפה, רישוי בקרת עומס ותחומי ניהול, סייעה בהכנה החינוכית של כל עובדי הכניסה, ואפשרה להם לבצע את תפקידם המיועד עם ידע פרוצדוראלי מספיק או לטפס על הסולם עד הנהלה, אם צריך. בהמשך שימשו ספרי הלימוד והקורסים לשכפול הצלחה זו בתחנות צפון אמריקה האחרות של Austrian Airlines.

The Centralized Load Control (CLC) Department, entailing the preparation of loading instruction/reports and load sheets for the four North American stations of Chicago, New York, Toronto, and Washington, was highly successful and once involved four aircraft types: the Boeing 767, the Airbus A-330, the Airbus A-340, and the Boeing 777.

The Baggage Services/Lost and Found Department, under the direction of Omar Alli, served as a model for other stations and earned a lost baggage rating that became the envy of them. Omar himself often traveled to other stations in order to provide restructuring guidance for their own Baggage Services Departments.

The Ticket Sales-Reservations counter, under the direction of Sidonie Shields, consistently collected significant amounts of annual revenue in ticket sales, excess baggage, and other fees.

The visible presence of Austrian Airlines, in red uniforms, to the passenger, whether worn by Austrian Airlines or Swissport staff, cemented its identity.

The several annual special flights, which sometimes posed significant challenges, but were always successfully executed, included those carrying the Rabbi Twersky group, the American Music Abroad group, the IMTX group, the Vienna Boys' Choir, the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, and Life Ball, the latter with its high-profile celebrities, colorful characters, and pre-departure parties.

The special events, often fostering a “family” atmosphere among its own and Swissport staff, included the annual “Year in Review” series, the Pocono Mountain ski trips, the summer pool parties, the birthdays, the Thanksgiving dinners, and the Secret Santas at Christmas.

And, finally, the daily briefings, jokes, laughs, raps, camaraderie, friendships, and human connections continually emphasized and acknowledged the true souls behind everyone as they cohesively worked toward the airline's and the station's common goals.

Michael Steinbuegl, who assumed command as JFK Station Manager in September of 2005, had cultivated the environment and orchestrated the steps that had allowed every one of these accomplishments to be made.

13. Two Decades of Elasticity:

Austrian Airlines, hitherto among the smallest European airlines, had to assume a considerable degree of necessary “elasticity” during its 21 years at JFK, ebbing and flowing with the ever-changing turbulence created by prevailing market conditions, seeking financial benefit, synergistic strength, market niche, alliance realignment, and ultimate change of ownership. Defying Darwinian philosophy, whose “survival of the fittest” prediction is often translated as “survival of the largest,” Austrian Airlines had, despite numerous, necessary redirections, proven the contrary, perhaps prompting a rewording of the philosophy to read, “survival of the smallest,” if four short words were added-namely, “as a global player.”

Toward this end, the latest strategy enabled the carrier to survive. For station JFK and its staff, however, it did not.


Because I had been hired by Austrian Airlines two months before its inaugural transatlantic flight from JFK occurred on March 26, 1989 and subsequently held several positions there throughout its 21-year history, I felt singularly qualified, as a lifetime aviation researcher, historian, and writer, to preserve its story in words. It is, in essence, my story. It is what I lived. And what I leave…