Monday, July 17, 2023

Old Airlines from LAX

 Back when the Airline Industry was regulated (and super expensive), the government gave out slots at airports, decided how much they could charge, and how often they could fly.

With one exception. Fights within a single state were not subject to Federal Rules. There were airlines that took advantage of this in Alaska (Alaska Air), Texas (Braniff and Southwest) and California.

Here were the California Airlines of my youth.

Western Airlines:

Created in 1926, this airline flew all over the western United Sates and ultimately into Mexico. It's California legs were based out of Los Angeles. I loved their commercials because they had that bird who sat on the airplane and said: "Western Airlines. The oooonnnnly way to fly!"

PSA - Pacific Southwest Airlines

PSA was started in san Diego and flew the West Coast routes. They were famous for the planes with a smile on the front of the plane, and for the 1960's swinger stewardess' outfits (back when the were only Stewardesses).

Hughes Air West

Hughes was started in San Mateo. It did acceptably during regulations and took on a lot of flights to Mexico. I actually took this airline for the USC - Stanford game in 1976. Their airplanes were bright yellow and often called (by them) a flying banana. Seeing a bunch of Cardinal and Gold suits, dresses and sweats on a bright yellow plane would hurt your eyes.

Funny & Sad Story: My best interview for post-UCLA work was with Hughes Air West. I was a Geography / Economics major and with the VERY recent deregulation of airlines I wanted to get into route planning. Before this all the routes had been set by the government and now they could set their own. Seriously, my interview went great! And I was invited back for a second interview, which they rarely did. And then, damn Republic Airlines completed their sale, moved the headquarters and planning back east and cut staff. So, yeah, no jobs in route planning

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