What happened to Transwede Airways?

Today we take a look at 13 years of history Swedish charter and later scheduled carrier Transwede Airways. Wanting to fill the void left by the demise of Transair Sweden, Thomas Johansen founded Transwede Airways on April 1, 1985. The new airline initially started operations at Växjö Småland Airport (VXO) with two 109-seat Sud Aviation Super aircraft Caravels. A year later, the airline moved its operational base to Stockholm Orlando Airport (ARN).

In 1986, Transwede Airways acquired the Swedish tour operator Royal Tours to secure 200,000 charter passengers per year. During its first year of operation, Transwede Airways purchased two McDonnell Douglas MD-83 aircraft to complement its Caravel fleet. The MD-83s were deployed on charter flights from Stockholm via Aals to Gander in Canada. After refueling in Gander, the planes continued to Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) in Florida.


SAS had a virtual monopoly on domestic flights in Sweden

By 1990, Transwede Airways had added a Boeing 737-200, two Boeing 737-300s, two MD-87s, and two more MD-83s. at that time Scandinavian Airlines System (SAS) and its subsidiary Linjeflyg, thanks to government concessions, effectively obtained a monopoly on all domestic flights in Sweden. Transwede was not satisfied with this and in 1989 applied for a license to operate flights between Gothenburg Landvetter Airport (GOT), Sundsvall Airport (SDL) and Skjeleftea Airport (SFT). To make the flights profitable, the airline purchased several smaller turboprop aircraft.

In the summer of 1990, Transwede applied for scheduled flights between Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmö to London Gatwick Airport (LGW). To compete with SAS, Transwede took advantage of the fact that the Danish government had given Maersk Air permission to fly to London Gatwick from Copenhagen. Initially operating eight return flights a week, Transwede offered tickets for 32% less than what SAS and British Airways were paying.

Transwede accounted for 29% of market flights between Sweden and London

After receiving permission to operate flights between Oslo and London Gatwick, Sterling Airways owner TransNordic Group acquired a 33% stake in Transwede. During the year, Transwede operated three times a day between Sweden and London with a 29% market share of the route. In August 1992, Transwede began cooperation with Finnair, providing passengers on each other’s networks.

Transwede Fokker F100

In February 1994, Transwede signed an interline agreement with SAS, allowing the sale of multi-leg tickets by both airlines. A few weeks later, he announced a similar deal with Lufthansa for flights between Sweden and Germany. Despite the increase in operating income, Transwede was losing money.

Norway’s Braathens SAFE buys Transwede

By 1995, the airline was almost out of scheduled flights, but had lost heavily in the charter market. Transwede split the airline in two to separate the business, creating Transwede Leisure. The charter division was then sold to Swedish tour operator Fritidsresor and renamed Blue Scandinavia.

In 1996, Norway’s largest domestic airline, Braatens SAFE acquired 50% of Transwede with the right to buy the rest of the airline after a year. Braathens SAFE acquired the remaining 50% of Transwede on 18 December 1997 and changed the airline’s name to Braathens Sverige AB.

Braathens Boeing 737-300

According to ATDB.aero, Transwede Airways operated a fleet of the following aircraft:

  • 2 x Caravelle 10Bs
  • 2 x Caravelle Rs.10
  • 17 x MD-80s
  • 11 Fokker F-28
  • 4 x Boeing 737-200s
  • 4 x Boeing 737-300s
  • 1 x Boeing 737-500
  • 2 x Boeing 757-200s

https://simpleflying.com/transwede-airways-history/ What happened to Transwede Airways?

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