+ Discover What The Geeks Know That You May Not
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- Points With A Crew: Introduction To Air Alliances
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- View From The Wing: Is Skyteam Crumbling?
- View From The Wing: Could Virgin Group Start A New Alliance?
- One Mile At A Time: Bad Airlines Joining A Good Alliance
The first example of an airline partnership dates back to the 1930s when Pan American World Airways partnered with both Pan American-Grace Airways and Panair do Brasil in order to expand its services into Central and South America. By partnering together, the subsidiaries of the larger umbrella of Pan Am were able to cooperated and overcome growth obstacles. Through the elimination of process redundancies and streamlining passenger flow Pan Am was able to save money.
Pan American-Grace Airways, better known as Panagra, was a joint venture between Pan Am and Grace Shipping Company. In comparison, Panair do Brasil was established by Ralph Ambrose O'Neill who had previously tried to purchase ETA – Empresa de Transporte Aéreo, a Brazilian airline. However, when the purchase of ETA fell through for both political and viability reasons, O'Neill decided to create his own Brazilian subsidiary in order to access the Brazilian aviation market. Panagra's network stretched from Panama and the United States-controlled Panama Canal to Santiago, Chile and Buenos Aires, Argentina. Panair do Brasil operations were authorized in all Brazilian territory, with extensions to Uruguay, Argentina, French Guiana, Guyana, Essequibo, Demerara, and Suriname.
In 1939, a passenger traveling from the United States to Buenos Aires could board a Pan Am in Miami and fly on a Panagra flight to Colon, Panama in the Canal Zone. After a stay overnight could then board further Panagra flights onward to Buenos Aires with overnight stops in Guayaquil, Arica and Santiago. Four days may appear to be a considerable amount of time, however, the Panagra service was a full day faster than the Panair do Brasil service operated via the coast of Brazil. - adapted from Aviation Knowledge