Believe it or not, air travel was actually glamorous at one point in time. Gourmet meals preceded pretzels and peanuts, aircrafts jetted across the Atlantic in record time, and some even carried a single passenger at a time (so much for strangers kicking the back of your seat).
There to capture the beauty of it all: vintage airline ads like the 14 we've gathered here.
A vibrant travel ad by the airline Sabena was created in the late 1950s/early 60s (specific year unknown). Sabena, the Belgian national carrier, (Syndicat Aeriens pour l'Etude des Transports Aeriens) in 1919 and made its first flight in 1929 from Rotterdam to Strasbourg, stopping in Brussels. The company would run for 78 years before declaring by a Belgium court.
A small Air Union plane flys over green terrain in a travel ad created sometime during (specific year unknown). with Air Orient, Société Générale de Transport Aérien (SGTA), CIDNA and Aéropostale to form Air France. It was one of the first airlines created before World War II and played a vital role in civil aviation.
This Air France travel poster created in displays a plane flying towards a palm tree on a sunny day. The same year, Air France first started . Jet planes arrived during the late 1950s, signalizing airplanes' ability to cross the Atlantic Ocean at a speed of 900km/h.
This poster advertised a man playing on the drums with an aircraft flying above for Braniff International Airways. The airline first operated from , flying through the middle and southwest portion of the United States, as well as Panama, South America, Europe and Asia. They were known for their colorful planes, that a passenger could ride with them seven times and never fly the same aircraft.
The World's Fair was a marketing point in this ad by Eastern Air Lines. The airlines and operated until 1991, when they operations were halted due to the Gulf War. Eastern Airlines was also the first to operate the Boeing 727 and 757.
and its airliner known as Handley Page W8F 'City of Washington' flew 853,042 miles, carried 11,395 passengers and 212,380 letters in its first year. The airline was marketed as "The Greatest Air Service In The World" and the "World's Largest Air liners" in this poster created in the .
A Farman Air Lines plane, also known as Lignes Aériennes Farman, flies above a train in this sky blue travel poster created in , though the company was actually founded in 1919. The airline was founded by two brothers, Henri and Maurice Farman, who also owned Farman Aviation Works. The company was later changed to Société Générale de Transport Aérien (SGTA) and in 1933 would .
Stylish travelers depart a British Overseas Airways Corporation carrier in a poster created in the . In 1953, British Overseas Airways Corporation , reducing the travel time from 88 hours to 33.
gA bright yellow United Airlines poster created in features a woman in a two-piece bathing suit, a hat and white sunglasses posin in front of three large palm trees. and in 1939 United signed their first bargaining agreement with mechanics and other employees.
A travel poster for Mexicana de Aviation created in the shows a woman standing under a tall statue while a plane flies overhead. The with planes that only carried one passenger and luggage that couldn't exceed 110 pounds. It wasn't until 1929 that Mexicana merged with Pan American Airlines and began carrying 13 people at a time.
In the 1930s, the to merge, forming TWA, in an effort to improve cross-country mail routes. This colorful travel poster was created in the and shows a TWA airplane flying above a geometrical "city." That same year, TWA developed the hub-and-spoke system , with bases in Kansas City and New York.
A colorful travel poster depicts an Aer Lingus – Irish International Airlines plane flying over an area in Switzerland full of snow. its first three Boeing 720s, and then four years later acquired four Boeing 707s.
This poster showing a KLM carrier flying above water was created in , the same year a KLM plane few in from Amsterdam to Batavia to drop off Christmas and New Year's cards. All the cards arrived on time.