SN Brussels? Let’s go back to SabenaBack to Forum
Anonymous6 Jan 2012
With SN Brussels reintroducing flights to New York and an upgrade of their business and economy classes, I think it’s time the airline returned to its original name, Sabena.
I’m sure there were legal reasons for why the company had to change its name, but at the end of the day the brand “SN Brussels” lacks meaning whereas Sabena (Société Autonyme Belge d’Exploitation de la Navigation Aérienne) is a brand with heritage and character!
Just my 2 cents,
Tom6 Jan 2012
Tom – I would not recommend to go back to naming the company Sabena. First of all the new name is well known now and has a good repurtation…whereas the repuration of the former Sabena (Such A Bad Experience Never Again) was lacking…………I often travel SN Brussels Airlines and now that they joined Miles & More what else is there to want……6 Jan 2012
I have to agree with Jan, I live in both Belgium and Holland, and can only say that I have extremely negative feelings whenever I hear the name Sabena. It reminds me of all that is bad with a government owned, mismanaged, entitled carrier, with pathetically lazy staff providing horrendous service, There is a reason that in Sabena’s entire 70+ year history it had only one profitable year, and that was the first year of it being owned by Swissair. Let the Sabena name rest in peace, and let’s keep SN Brussels who, while I don’t fly them often, what I have experienced of them is much better than I ever had with their predecessor.6 Jan 2012
When I lived in Rotterdam I used to fly Sabena on routes that KLM or Swissair did not fly to. I only had negative experiences with them. On one occasion leaving Jeddah, with 100 thirsty oil workers on board, they announced they had forgotten to load the alcohol at Brussels. What they did have was drunk on the way down and they were now dry. A riot nearly broke out.
To top it all, they showed some aircraft disaster movie just to get everyone in the right mood!
The buying of Sabena by Swissair was one reason for their downfall. What a mistake that was. I think it was a few days after 9/11, with the industry in its worse state of crisis ever, that the pilots decided to go on strike. Unbelievable!
I think Dutchyankee you used the wrong word for “B”. I seem to recall a certain 6 letter word ending in “Y”!7 Jan 2012
This question raises for me a different question to just the name – why is it that hard working tax payers are forced by crazy governments to subsidise loss making airlines ? Sabena should have gone bust many yrs ago but was kept going by the Belgium tax payer. Likewise AirFrance should be allowed to die but sadly Neil Kinnock as European transport minister allowed special permission to break EU subsidy rules and allowed the French government to keep them going. Imagine if all the loss making airlines went bust, we would have wonderful quiet airports. Yes it would mean the end of the silly low prices but they are not sustainable as proven by the fact that many airlines make a loss. It would also be better for the environment if there was less flying.26 Jan 2012
The French would keep AF going permission or not. To much pride at stake and can you imagine a French Ambassador flying from say Washington to Paris via London with BA?
By the way, I hear rumours Swiss will revert to Swissair in a few years. Anyone heard the same?26 Jan 2012
@LagunoPirate – yes, that was my recollection of the SABENA acronym as well….
The disappearance of Sabena managed to elevate Iberia to the title of Europe’s Worst Flag Carrying Airline, in my opinion.26 Jan 2012
I don’t think it’s that hard to come up with puns for an acronym or a brand name (SkyTeam = ScareTeam, United = Untied) … at the end of the day, No airline in this world is universally lauded by everyone that has ever flown them.
With that said, I’m not a Belgian myself… but I would have trouble swallowing the idea that the name of my country’s flag carrier is “Brussels Airlines” — It just doesn’t sound sophisticated and it lacks the story of a 70+ year old airline that pioneered routes to Africa and had a fleet of over 80 aircraft.
Let me stress again that when I say the name should come back, I don’t mean all of the “baggage” that comes with it — rebranding the company wouldn’t suddenly make all of the positive aspects of Brussels Airlines disappear.
I have no idea what would make you say Iberia is Europe’s worst flag carrier… I don’t know that much about the airline except that they were able to squeeze out profits in difficult times back in the early 2000s and introduced (angled, sadly) lie-flat business class seats long before Alitalia, nor did they cease to operate like Olympic Airways did.
Rebranding the company back to the name that gives the airline proper recognition as Belgium’s flag carrier would not impact its membership in Miles & More
Tom26 Jan 2012
Iberia was the last of the old dinosaur state-managed airlines, and it showed in their customer service. They might have improved since, but my memory, four or five years ago, of one of their flioghts being 100% (yes, one hundred per cent) over-booked means I won’t fly with them again if I can possibly help it.26 Jan 2012
I have never flown Sabena but my experience with Brussels Airways was anything but pleasant. The aircraft was dirty and the Cabin Attendant was not very friendly (I was flying in the equivalent of business). This same cabin attendant shouted over the PA system for every one to shut up and keep quiet very rudely and then proceeded to announce “On behalf of Brussels Airways, we warmly welcome you on this flight to Brussels…..” So the use of SABENA (ie Such A Bad Experience Never Again) may actually be quite appropriate!27 Jan 2012
As I mentioned earlier, there’s no airline out there that can say it has pleased every passenger to have ever flown with them. From lost luggage to rude flight attendants to people who recline their seat all the way… flying isn’t what it used to be.
Thank you! Finally someone is with me on this. When Delta, United, AA etc. filed for bankruptcy, they didn’t change their name… in the end people will see these airilnes’ respective financial meltdowns as tiny “speedbumps” in what are otherwise storied and rich histories.
Swiss, Lufthansa, TAP, Thai, Singapore, AF, BA, SAA, etc… these airlines are like “world ambassadors” representing their country wherever they fly — Brussels Airlines sounds like a regional startup carrier. FlyBaboo, anyone? (great airline, btw!)
Honestly, Lufthansa may as well save their money and create efficiencies by folding Brussels Airlines into the LH fleet and network.27 Jan 2012