Saab History Reviews SAAB 340 Aircraft Maine To Boston

Posted on 20. Apr, 2009 by in 2000-2009, 340, Boston, Massachusetts

The SAAB 340, the second commercial aircraft from SAAB since the Scandia 90, had its maiden voyage in January of 1983.

4.jpgThis 34-passenger turboprop plane jointly developed with Swedish SAAB aerospace company and United States based Fairchild industries, has had an excellent track record since it’s debut and continues to be well regarded as safe and reliable air transportation all over the world.

In the North East region of the United States, where Saab-Scania began their North American offices, the Saab-Fairchild (SF340) has had numerous flights between regional and international airports over the years.

The first of many included flights out of Maine a few years after the debut of the aircraft. Today, the SF340 continues flights between major and municipal airports such as Augusta, Maine. In Augusta, the capital city of the state of Maine, there are now three routes a day to and from Boston, Massachusetts. There are also flights to Bar Harbor as well as Preque Isle.

According to Colgan Air’s Nancy Witham, “There have been over 400 inbound and outbound flights carrying over 1,200 passengers since March”. As summer arrives, this figure is hoped to grow significantly as tourism season is in session.

2.jpgI had the great opportunity recently to enjoy one of these flights thanks to the folks at Colgan Air out of Washington, D.C.

My takeoff experience with the SAAB 340 from Augusta, Maine to Boston, Massachusetts was comforting knowing that this small Swedish-built aircraft from a company that focuses on safety first, took off without any drama and extra weight and engine noise commonly found in larger jet-engine based aircraft.

Once we made it to 10,000 feet a far cry from traditional flying altitudes found in just about every other aircraft today, I got probably one of the most enjoyable sightseeing experiences as we hugged the Northern New England coastline all the way to Logan Airport. As a passenger sitting comfortably in the leather business-class like seats, I received first class attention from courteous staff at all times.

3.jpgAs we began to descend, the ringing in the ears normally experienced, was non-existent and the touch down was a smooth transition from air to ground. One of my favorite aspects of this experience was the fact that passengers don’t have to wait long to get off of the plane. With only 34 passengers it doesn’t take long to get off the plane, but what makes the process even faster besides passenger count, the ability to simply walk down a small flight of stairs directly onto the tarmac and enter the airport terminal. Now that’s efficient!

The SAAB 340 has a long history of reliable air transportation and today it continues to serve as a beacon to safer, more energy-efficient transportation in the airline industry for professionals or tourists alike.

Currently round trip airfare between Augusta and Boston is $269.00, although prices can vary. This competitively priced airfare usually finds itself around $60 less than similiar flights at nearby Portland Airport.

11.jpgAs the summer travel season gets close, I highly suggest choosing Colgan Air’s SAAB 340 whether you are in the North East of the United States or any of their 20-routes throughout the United States.

I want to thank all of the folks at Colgan Air that managed to take time out of their day to organize the necessary logistics and schedules in order for me to have this experience to share with others here on Saab History.

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