Lufthansa (Deutsche Lufthansa AG) is the largest German airline company, headquartered in Cologne. Their main base is at Frankfurt International Airport in Frankfurt am Main which is also Lufthansa's primary traffic hub. The company has developed a second hub at Munich's Franz Josef Strau� International Airport.
Lufthansa is a founding member of Star Alliance, one of the world's major airline alliances. The Lufthansa Group operates more than 300 aircraft.
The company was founded in 1926, following a merger between "Deutsche Aero Lloyd" (DAL) and "Junkers Luftverkehr" on January 6 of that year. The company's original full name was Deutsche Luft Hansa Aktiengesellschaft. The name Lufthansa derives from Luft (the German word for "air") and Hansa (the Hanseatic trade organization that ruled large parts of Northern Europe during the medieval times).
In the 1950s East Germany attempted to establish its own airline using the Lufthansa name, but this resulted in a dispute with West Germany, where the airline had been already re-established after the Second World War. East Germany instead called its national airline Interflug, which ceased operations in 1991. Lufthansa was banned from flying into West Berlin until the demise of the communist regime.
Lufthansa was the launch customer of the Boeing 737 aircraft, and the only buyers of new 737-100s. By doing so, Lufthansa became the first foreign launch customer for a Boeing commercial plane. On 17 May 2004, Lufthansa became the launch customer for Boeing's Connexion in-flight online connectivity service.
In June 2003 Lufthansa opened new Terminal 2 at Munich's Franz Joseph Strauss Airport (MUC) to relieve its main hub, Frankfurt (FRA), which is plagued with capacity constraints. It is one of the first terminals in Europe partially owned by an airline.
On 22 March 2005 SWISS merged with Lufthansa Airlines. The deal consists of Lufthansa offering public shareholders the average price over the weeks prior to the announcement. The majority shareholders (the Swiss government and large Swiss companies) will be offered payment if Lufthansa's share price outperforms an airline index during the years following the merger.
In addition to its mainline operation, Lufthansa has many subsidiaries. The most important are:
- Lufthansa Cargo
- Lufthansa Technik, one of the world's largest aircraft maintenance providers
- Lufthansa Systems, one of the world's leading aviation IT-providers
- Lufthansa Regional, a regional carrier that is an alliance of several small airlines, including Lufthansa CityLine
- Lufthansa CityLine, a regional carrier
- Thomas Cook, a travel services provider
- Air Dolomiti, an airline based in Trieste, Italy
- Delvag, an insurance company specializing in air transport
- LSG Sky Chefs, the world's largest airline caterer, which accounts for one third of the world's airline meals
- Lufthansa Flight Training, a major provider of flight crew training services to various airlines
- Condor, a travel services provider
See full article: Lufthansa destinations
The Lufthansa fleet consists of the following aircraft (at April 2005):
- 15 Airbus A300B4
- 13 Airbus A319-100
- 34 Airbus A320-200
- 20 Airbus A321-100
- 6 Airbus A321-200
- 2 Airbus A330-200
- 8 Airbus A330-300 (further 2 on order)
- 30 Airbus A340-300
- 10 Airbus A340-600
- 33 Boeing 737-300
- 25 Boeing 737-500
- 30 Boeing 747-400
- Lufthansa Fleet Detail
- Lufthansa Passenger Opinions
- Lufthansa Company Profile (Yahoo)Template:Star Alliance
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