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LOT Polish Airlines

LOT Polish Airlines

by Giuseppe TovarDecember 11, 2013

LOT Polish Airlines is an airline headquartered in Warsaw, Poland. The company employs 4,200 people and covers 68 destinations in 36 countries. The Frederic Chopin International Airport is the main base and main connection center. The airline was founded in 1929 and is one of the oldest airlines of the world. It is a member of Star Alliance since 2003.

The airline was established on January 1 1929 by the Polish government as an autonomous public corporation state, taking charge of the domestic and international existing routes to Europe, starting its operations in March 1929. The first aircraft used were Junkers F.  and a Fokker F. VIIA. It was recognized by IATA in 1930 and its first international service was held on April of that same year to Bucharest, followed by flights to Athens, Beirut and Helsinki. The services were suspended during the Second World War, and all aircraft were destroyed or abducted. On April 1 1945, after seven years of flight suspensions, the airline resumed operations after receiving 10 Lisunov Li-2, then an additional Li-2 and finally 9 Douglas C-47. Domestic services were restored on April 1945, while the international services did so on May 11 1945.

The Convair 240 and Vickers Viscount were obtained for the first time in 1957 and 1962.

During the communist period, the composition of the fleet changed to Soviet aircraft. With the introduction of the aircraft IL-62, was launched to the transatlantic services to Montreal and New York. The current color scheme was introduced in 1978.

At the end of the 1980s, the fleet returned to Western aircraft, starting with the acquisition of the Boeing 767-200 in April 1989, followed by the ATR 72 in August 1991, the Boeing 737-500 in December 1992 and Boeing 737-400s in April of 1993. From the mid-1980s to early 1990s it flew from Warsaw to the city of Chicago, Newark and Toronto. In December 1992, it became a joint stock company, as an interim step toward the partial privatization, which became effective at the end of 1999, when SAirGroup acquired a 37.6 % of the shares. The Polish Government retained control with a 51 % of the low-cost airline subsidiary, Central wings, in 2004.

On October 26 2003 LOT became the 14th Star Alliance member. The airline made plans to incorporate new connections to the Middle East in October 2006. Although they were later abandoned after signing a code-share agreement with their partner, Singapore Airlines.

On 7 September 2005 the airline ordered seven (with an option for two additional) Boeing 787 for their long-range operations to be received in the 2008. The airline will be the first European airline to operate the 787-800. On February 19, 2007 the airline confirmed an additional Boeing 787 for a total of eight.

The airline was the first to operate commercial services with the Embraer 170.

In 2007 the airline opened 2 new intercontinental routes from Rzeszow Airport to Newark and New York operated with the Boeing 767.


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About The Author
Giuseppe Tovar
  • anatovar
    December 13, 2013 at 2:22 am

    We had a great series of trips on LOT. I left from Vancouver, changed planes in Toronto to Warsaw. The Warsaw was fantastic, I moved up to Business Premium, on the new 787 Dreamliner. The staff was incredible, I was born and raised in Warsaw, so I speak fluent Polish, but that did not matter, all the staff was very fluent in English. The food was excellent, the movies were up to date and we could watch as many as we liked. The return flight from Warsaw to Vancouver was also a great experience, I’m sure going back.

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