Sunday, May 31, 2015
This high disco-era Singapore Airlines route map boldly fits the styles of the times, laid out on a blinding dance floor of jolting ribbons, the jagged bands of red and blue interrupted by thunderbolts of strobe.
Aside from this eye-watering background, the route map cartography itself is rather bland: the jet black masses of four continents are connected with an all-white network. While many lines fan out from Singapore itself, Bahrain is particularly important scissors hub, the airline's sole Gulf destination acting as the only way station to six European hubs: London, Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Zürich, Athens, and Rome. Oriented eastward, Bahrain hosted Singapore flights from Bombay, Bangkok, and Colombo.
In East Asia itself, it is surprising to note how local the schedules ran: just to get up to Seoul or Tokyo required at least two stops in Hong Kong and Taipei. Already, the airline was well-oriented toward the Kangaroo Routes, with a criss-cross of long flights to Perth, Melbourne, and Sydney—although at the very least this map shows that a London-Sydney itinerary would have to pass through two other airports, at minimum, which doesn't seem so fly.
This item is reposted from Flickr user caribb (Doug from Montreal)'s photo stream. A special thank you to Doug as always for allowing creative commons licensing of his fantastic collection.
Wednesday, May 27, 2015
From a global business traveler magazine back cover, Singapore Airlines, Silk Air and Changi Airport partner to boast of the easy connections from Manila to Male, Denspasar to Delhi. While the routes fan upwards toward mainland and offshore China, they do not attempt to show Korea or Japan, but instead link a dozen cities each in India, Indonesia and Southeast Asia, many of which are in fact served by the little sister carrier, SilkAir.
Most notably dating the advert is the list of long-haul routes: San Francisco, Houston, Los Angeles and New York. While all four cities are served from Singapore, none are nonstop nowadays, as the ultra-long haul A340 flights were discontinued at the end of 2013. Today they are paired Houston-Moscow, Los Angeles-Tokyo, New York-Frankfurt, and San Francisco with both Seoul and Hong Kong.
Monday, May 25, 2015
The curious case of the Azerbaijan Airlines route map, a semi-interactive presentation on the airline's slick web portal. Yellow-gold pegs portrude out from a slate-clay continent, showing destinations as expected as London, Frankfurt, Moscow, Paris, and Dubai and as interesting as Prague, Riga, Tel-Aviv, Tblisi and Minsk. To the north, a number of secondary Russian cities is served, but there's only a weak network southward: the map is equally intriguing for the cities not shown. Only New York and Beijing, new long-haul additions to the network, are not encompassed in this slice of globe.
Sunday, May 24, 2015
In sharp contrast to the photo-generated graphics of the domestic routes, this iteration of Uzbekistan Airway's international network is a sharp, simple white-on-blue. Found on this antique Central Asian tourism website, it dates most likely to the middle of the last decade.
The broad reach of Uzbekistan Airways features fantastic array of destinations of four continents, most especially the flagship Tashkent-Riga-New York route: this pride-of-the-network HY101 survives to this day. There are a great many Russian destinations, and service to many of the Central Asian capitals: Almaty, Astana, Bishkek, Ashgabad, and Baku. One might put the flight to Urumqi, capital of Chinese Turkestan, in this same category. Seven other European airports are included, including Athens and Istanbul. More randomly are flights to Seoul, Osaka, Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur. Delhi is only less surprising than Lahore and Amritsar, while Jeddah, Dubai, Sharjah and Tel-Aviv round out the Middle East.
Looking at the roster from Wikipedia, a great many of these more random cities survive within the network today.
Saturday, May 23, 2015
The Domestic Routes of Uzbekistan Airways, which provides an essential transport network in such a vast, inhospitable, and oddly-shaped country, double-landlocked in the center of Asia.
Naturally, the capital serves as the hub, roughly in the middle of the country, positioned between the ancient Silk Road cities of Samarkand and Bukhara and Ferghana in the east. Tashkent's importance is shown in large, bold, capital letters, with the Uzbekistan Airways swan logo as its point. Nukus in distant Karakalpakstan is the westernmost destination, where the map over-optimistically represents the decidemated Aral Sea as a serene lake of glistening aqua.
Likewise, the map itself presents a country with less than 10% arable land as a system of lush, green valleys, held aloft in an azure blue sky, floating in the clouds.
This item found via this website.
Saturday, May 9, 2015
Continuing from yesterday's post, it is somewhat astonishing to consider today that at the height of its reach, Swissair served more cities in Africa than any other external continent (17 African destinations compared to 14 across Asia). Particularly dense are the West African capitals, six airports from Dakar to Douala (the only non-capital besides Johannesburg on the map). Past Cameroon, francophone Libreville and Kinshasa are also connected, whereas in East Africa, Anglophone Nairobi and Dar Es Salaam are linked via formerly-British Khartoum.
To match the astonishment of the extent of the Swissair network in the early 1970s is to note that today, the successor Swiss International Air Lines only flies to Johannesburg and Dar Es Salaam.
Special thanks again to Flickr user caribb (Doug from Montreal) for allowing his collection to be featured here.
Friday, May 8, 2015
The five-continent network of d stretched from Santiago to Singapore, Montreal to Manila. Four cities in North America, four in South America, three in South Asia, and five in East Asia were connected with what here is simply denoted as "Switzerland" sitting at the center of Europe, whether Zürich or Geneva is not specified. The only other European cities marked are Athens and Istanbul. A denser array in the Near East: Ankara, Baghdad, Beirut, Cairo, Damascus, Nicosia, Tehran, and Tel-Aviv.
A special thanks to Flickr user caribb (Doug from Montreal) for the fair-use rights.
The particularly-strong African network will be featured in the following post.