Korean Air is the largest airline based in Korea. One of the largest airlines in Asia, it operates a network that links Europe, Africa, Asia, North America, and (formerly to) South America to its hub at Incheon International Airport and its domestic hub is at Gimpo Airport (formerly Kimpo International Airport).
- IATA Code: KE
- ICAO Code: KAL
- Callsign: Korean Air
Korean Air began in 1962 as Korean Air Lines and was owned by the South Korean Government. It replaced the former Korean carrier Korean National Airlines. In 1969 KAL was acquired by the Hanjin Transport Group and became privately owned.
International flights to Hong Kong and China were flown with Boeing 707s until the airline was privatized. In 1973, KAL introduced Boeing 747s on their Pacific routes and started a European service to Paris using the 707s. A new blue-top livery was introduced in 1984 and the airline's name changed to Korean Air. In 1986 Korean Air became the first airline to use the new MD-11 to supplement its new fleet of Boeing 747-400s. As Korean Air grew, its MD-11 jets became used only as freighters (in addition to 747 freighters).
Incidents and Accidents
The Korean Air fleet consists of the following aircraft (at March 2005):
Korean Air has ordered 5 Airbus A380 aircraft and has options on a further 3 aircraft. The first A380 will be delivered before the end of 2007 and the others will be added between then and 2009 (ref: Airliner World, March 2005).
Its safety record rates a “B", the second highest grade possible, according to Air Rankings Online (see rankings at Airline Rankings). -->