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History of the 80's

 

 

1980   Three (3) additional Tri-Stars joined the fleet. Also two 60-seat Fokker F-28 Fellowships, rear-engine twin-jets replaced F-27A. Routes were opened to Bangkok, Dhaka, Mogadishu and Nairobi  
       
1981   Saudi Arabian Airlines moved into its exclusive terminal at the newly-opened King Abdul Aziz International Airport in Jeddah. Saudi Airlines Catering Service was established. Technical division moved into the new hangar and maintenance complex. On July 1st, the first nonstop service was inaugurated from Jeddah to New York with the airline's very own Boeing B747-SP aircrafts. This service, along with the Riyadh-New York service introduced later, are the only nonstop flights covering four continents, linking Asia and America, and over flying Africa and Europe in between. Flights to Madrid started. Boeing 747F cargo service begun to London, Paris, Frankfurt and Amsterdam  
       
1982  

Ten (10) B-747s in service by the end of this year. Flights started to Singapore, Manila, Delhi and Islamabad and resumed to Sharjah

 
       
1983   Saudi Arabian Airlines carried 11.4 million passengers this year. Nonstop flights to Seoul started. A route to Nice (summer season only) was also opened and services to Baghdad were resumed. The new King Khaled International Airport opened in Riyadh. Rolls-Royce RB-211 power plant overhaul shop opened in Jeddah  
       
1984   First Airbus A300-600 for which Saudi Arabian Airlines was the launch customer was delivered in March. Eleven (11) Airbus A300-600s were received and put into operation by October of the same year. Operations to Colombo started. Two (2) Cessna Citation IIs delivered to Special Flight Services charter operations. MEMIS (Materials Engineering Information System) was brought in-house after being hosted by Alitalia since 1979  
       
1985   Five (5) of ten (10) new Boeing 747-300s SUD (Stretched Upper Deck) delivered. Basic flight training began in the Kingdom  
       
1986   Five (5) more B-747-300s delivered and introduced into operation. On September 1st, established air cargo hub in Brussels. Flights started to Amsterdam and Lahore  
       
1987  

Gulf Cooperation Council Aviation Services Co. Ltd. (GASCO) was established for Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman, and U.A.E. This was a pioneering step towards close cooperation among GCC countries. Business class ("Horizon Class") was inaugurated on New York, London, and Cairo routes (other sectors followed soon after). New routes to Dakar and Kuala Lumpur operated. SARS (Saudi Airlines Automated Reservations System) had a successful cutover of operations from London to Jeddah. Saudi Arabian Airlines subscribed to Bahamas system of baggage handling and management

   
         
1988   On June 15th, flights inaugurated to Washington D.C., an extension of the New York service. Air cargo hub established in Taipei, Taiwan. GASCO established in-flight catering service in London, with the Marriott Corporation. GASCO has a 50% share in the kitchen, which specializes in Islamic catering  
       
1989  

Flights started to Larnaca and Addis Ababa. Domestic service started to Hafr al-Batin. Kitchen in London became operational as Marriott/GCC (now Caterair/GCC In-flight Services, Inc.)

 

 

 
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