At the end of September 2015, Korean Air owned 157 aircraft and operated scheduled flights to 127 cities in 44 foreign countries, including 12 cities in Korea.
In 1969, Korean Air Lines Co., Ltd. was in decline. An offer to privatise the airline by the Hanjin Group, specialists in transportation, was the start of a new chapter in growth and success. Although the challenge was never easy, Korean Air established itself as a respectable company
and carrier by opening its transpacific route in 1971 and its first Seoul-Paris freight route in 1973.
Always looking ahead, the company laid the groundwork for the future when it ordered American Boeing Company's B747 Jumbo in 1972, plus 6 additional Airbus A300 models in its early years.
In 1979, Korean Air launched a new service with direct passenger flights to New York, a gateway to expanding its routes for both passengers and freight throughout the 1980s. The dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991 and an aeronautical agreement with China in 1994 opened the skies to exciting new Korean Air route networks.
Korean Air introduced its 100th aircraft in 1995 and displayed consistent growth until the mid 1990s. It was then that new challenges arose, including oversaturation of the aviation industry and increasingly intense competition. Under such circumstances, President Yang Ho Cho, son of founder Choong Hoon Cho, became the Chairman and CEO, bringing his innovative mindset and excellent business sense to the company.