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Airline industry celebrate centenary of first commercial flight

by amit.uniyal 2. January 2014 09:16

The airline industry was in its elements when it recently celebrated the 100th anniversary of the first commercial flight. The 23 minute commercial flight was conducted between St. Petersburg and Tampa Bay. This was in stark comparison to an 11 hour train ride from Tampa which the winter tourists usually took to St. Petersburg. The purpose of starting the commercial flight was also to attract more winter tourists from Tampa. The officials from St. Petersburg also helped in making the first commercial flight become successful as they subsidized the travel on St. Petersburg-Tampa Airboat Line initially.

The first flight was interesting in itself. The first commercial flight had room for only one passenger. The day, January 1, on which the first commercial flight took place saw the mayor of St. Petersburg seated with the pilot Tony Jannus in the open cockpit. The city officials ended the subsidy three months later with the concluding of the tourism season. During this brief three months the airline had carried a total of 1,204 passengers. With this also ended the flight service as well.

Dr. Joseph Schwieterman, DePaul University transportation expert, said that the air travel was indeed quite a risky business during those times. The early flights were just like a roller-coaster ride that is taking place today, but however the risk was real and grave. During those days the train travel was popular and quite accessible. The commercial airline industry took really some time to get going.

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Tags: commercial flights

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