Travelling through time, just once. Many of us fantasize about this. We have celebrated our 60th anniversary in retro style: Last Saturday – exactly on the day 60 years after the first flight – Austrian Airlines took off heading to London.


On 31 March 1958, our Vickers Viscount took off for the very first time: VIE – LHR was on the flight plan. To celebrate this special day we flew to London on 31 March 2018 with the retro liner OE-LBP. Let’s tell you about this historic flight today, and share lots of details about OS453 with you:


60 Years Austrian Airlines


You could sense the special atmosphere already at the check-in: the retro logo had been placed prominently on the screens, the check-in counters had vases with flowers and smiling flight attendants. Selected guests had even been sent old style paper airline tickets by mail the previous week – just like back in the day.



The Gate for time travellers


Red Sachertorte, sparkling wine and drinks awaited guests at Gate G04. Again, there were many retro elements to be found such as old pictures from 60 years ago, wooden armchairs, carpets and a flight bulletin with interesting information about the flight. The only thing not quite retro were the planespotters reporting live on their social media channels. And we too shared many highlights of the day – those can still be found on Instagram channel.



Ready for Take-Off


The guests were chauffeured from the gate to the plane in a blue vintage bus, where the crew ceremoniously cut the ribbon and opened the flight.


No aircraft other than the Airbus A320 OE-LBP was right for this special day. With its retro exterior design, the old logo, the red-white-red tail and the iconic black nose, it was perfect for the anniversary flight. Once onboard, we noticed clever little details such as the headrests with the old AUA logo.



High up in the Air


After a charming welcome by the Captain, we made it to the runway and OS453 left Vienna Schwechat behind. At cruising altitude the travellers were spoiled with sparkling wine and Sachertorte.



That’s how beautiful our Anniversary Flight was:



We cannot promise you another retro-flight, but London is always worth the trip whatever the style of the plane. Plan your next flight now:


Photos: © Optical Engineers | Felipe Kolm