If you are a fan of Continental Airlines, today is a bittersweet day for you.
The official Internet web site of Continental Airlines will be unavailable at approximately 2:00 in the morning Eastern Standard Time on March 3, 2012, so take your screen shots of it while you can.
Continental Airlines flight 6 from Tokyo to Houston will be the last flight officially operating as a Continental Airlines flight, as it is scheduled to land in Houston on March 3, 2012 at 12:35 in the afternoon. However, FlyerTalk member Baze wonders what would happen if the flight gets delayed or canceled — and if the delay is long enough so it does not take off until after the changeover, will its flight number change? That is a good question, although one which some FlyerTalk members would rather not find out the answer.
The last departure as an official Continental Airlines flight belongs to Continental Airlines flight 1267, scheduled to depart from Phoenix at 11:59 Mountain Standard Time later this evening to its final destination in Cleveland — and there are some FlyerTalk members who have expressed interest in being passengers on that flight.
Launched as Varney Speed Lines in the southwestern United States in 1934 and named after co-owner Walter T. Varney — who, ironically, was also a founder of United Airlines — the name of the airline was changed to Continental Air Lines on July 8, 1937. Continental Airlines, as it was later called, was acquired by Texas Air Corporation in 1981 under the leadership of Frank Lorenzo. In 1987, the OnePass frequent flier loyalty program was created, which Continental Airlines shared jointly with Eastern Airlines. I became a OnePass member a year later and had been a passenger on Eastern Airlines at first before flying frequently on Continental Airlines.
I said it here back in November, and I will say it again: Continental Airlines treated me well when I was a top-tier frequent flier for several years, and I will certainly miss that airline. I remember being in flight when Continental Airlines celebrated its emergence from its second bankruptcy in the early 1990s as complimentary champagne was served to everyone on board.
Oh, well — at least my OnePass frequent flier loyalty program number will live on as my new United Airlines MileagePlus frequent flier loyalty program number…