Korean Airlines celebrated its 49th anniversary on March 5 in a ceremony at its head office in Gonghang-dong, Seoul, with some 300 executives and staff. It was led by Chairman Cho Yang-ho and President Cho Won-tai.
Korean Air traces its history back to March 1, 1968, as the first Korean international airline. Chairman Cho said in his congratulatory speech that he appreciates the efforts of every Korean Air employee in the successful operations of key facilities, including the 2nd Terminal at Incheon Int’l Airport, the safe operation of the airline and, most of all, the success of the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics, which impressed people around the world.
Since its launching, he said the airline has ventured into tough areas others had avoided with a challenging spirit. “We should be proud of that fact that the airline as a private enterprise has been writing the history of the nation’s aviation industry,” he said.
“Our forebears took over the airline with the foresight for the airline’s successful operation, and the airline has now flies around the world, leading the global aviation industry
“We should lead the changes in the aviation industry rather than just following them as we try ceaselessly to improve its operation and to analyze what the world wanted out of the aviation industry for our survival,” he added. “We should look for the factors that endangers our operation and remove them before they can hurt us with preventive measures to ensure the safety of our airline.”
Chairman Cho presented the Exemplary Service Awards to speed skaters Lee Seung-hoon and Mo Tae-bum for winning gold and silver medals, respectively, at the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics. Korean Air has won awards recently, too. The airline took the top award in the Best Business Class Red category in the Business Traveler Cellars in the Sky airline wine awards.
Cellars in the Sky, which celebrates the best first and business class wines served by airlines worldwide, announced the winners at a ceremony in London in February. Korean Air received the gold medal in the Best Business Class Red Wine category for serving Haselgrove Catkin Shiraz 2014 in its Prestige Class (Business Class).
In addition, the airline also received the bronze medal in the Best First Class Red Wine category for serving Chateau Du Tertre 2007. Business Traveler, a global travel magazine, has been handing out the renowned Cellars in the Sky awards annually since 1985.
Approximately 400 wines from 30 carriers, including Korean Air, Air France, Singapore Airlines, Cathay Pacific and British Airways, were submitted for the 2017 awards. The winners are determined by blind tastings conducted by a panel of wine experts. Korean Air serves a total of 49 wines on board, including 15 wines chosen specifically for First class. The airline maintains the highest level of quality by purchasing wines from 11 countries, depending on consumption and trends.
Korean Air also pre-orders some wines 3-4 years in advance of the expected in-flight service to secure wines in the best condition and local specialty wines are also served, according to the flight destination.
Korean Air is reputed for its world class in-flight service. Awards received include the Mercury Award for the airline’s traditional Korean in-flight meal, Business Travelers’ Best Airline Award in the entertainment category and PAX International’s award for Best In-Flight Meal Service in Asia.