CSA celebrates 80th anniversary of first flight

30-10-2003

It is now 80 years since Czechoslovak national airlines launched its regular service, becoming one of the world's first air carriers. The first flight, from Prague to the Slovak capital Bratislava, took off on October 29, 1923. It was only 20 years after the Wright Brothers assembled the first engine-powered plane ever - finally enabling mankind to fly.

It is now 80 years since Czechoslovak national airlines launched its regular service, becoming one of the world's first air carriers. The first flight, from Prague to the Slovak capital Bratislava, took off on October 29, 1923. It was only 20 years after the Wright Brothers assembled the first engine-powered plane ever - finally enabling mankind to fly.

Czech airlines spokeswoman Marcela Pickova told Czech Radio more about the historic undertaking:

"It was an Aero A-14 Brandenburg aircraft, it was an adapted military plane that the then Czechoslovak Airlines obtained from the Defence Ministry, including military pilots who remained on the ministry's payroll. There was only one pilot in the cockpit, Sergeant Major Karel Brabenec, and there was only one passenger on board - a reporter for the daily LIDOVE NOVINY, Vaclav Koenig. The plane also carried a few grams of mail, so it did not have a heavy load."

Back in 1923, there were only a few flights a week. The first international flight took place in 1930, when the first foreign line to Zagreb, Yugoslavia, was introduced. Since then, Czechoslovak and later Czech Airlines have made more than 980,000 flights and carried over 70 million passengers.

Today, Czech Airlines are a modern air carrier, offering 140 flights a day to 67 destinations in 42 countries around the world.

30-10-2003