Taking the fifth
Business Traveler|February 2020
The freedoms of the air are the bedrock of the aviation industry – and the fifth is perhaps the most important
ALEX MCWHIRTER

Toward the end of the Second World War, a group of wise men convened in Chicago. The result of their meeting was the Chicago Convention of 1944, which would determine how civil aviation would function in the future. Five freedoms of the air were established. They ranged from the first – the right to fly over a foreign country without landing – to the fifth, which is perhaps the most interesting. Simply put, fifth freedom grants an airline of one country the right to carry travelers between two other countries. One example would be British Airways carrying passengers between Singapore and Sydney, or Dubai’s Emirates flying customers between Milan and New York.

In the post-war years, fifth-freedom rights were of great benefit to airlines because aircraft of that era lacked range. It made long-distance routes such as DelhiNew York or London-Singapore viable because passengers could be carried to and from intermediate points. It also enabled airlines to operate to, from and within West Germany. For many years after the war, West Germany’s national airline was grounded, so fifth-freedom rights provided Germany with air links to the outside world, as well as those connecting the West with West Berlin (the latter were routed over East German airspace).

However, fifth freedoms are not a right. Over the decades, many airlines have had to surrender these “rights” when new ASAs (air service agreements) were drawn up. Because ASAs are conducted behind closed doors, we cannot say for certain, but it’s believed that both Air India and El Al surrendered some or all transatlantic flights from London. Singapore Airlines no longer operates as many transpacific flights from Hong Kong as it once did in days gone by.

Continue reading your story on the app

Continue reading your story in the magazine

MORE STORIES FROM BUSINESS TRAVELERView All

The Ritz-Carlton, St. Thomas

BEST FOR Oceanfront stays with terrific dining, swimming pools and an expansive beach.

2 mins read
Business Traveler
June/July 2021

The Crane Resort, Barbados

BEST FOR Clifftop views with vigorous ocean breezes, exotic dining and all-suite accommodations

2 mins read
Business Traveler
June/July 2021

Williamsburg

Chock full of history, this easy-to-reach destination is a kaleidoscope of old and new experiences for everyone

2 mins read
Business Traveler
June/July 2021

TESTING 1-2 -3

For now, COVID-19 tests are likely to be part of your travel experience. Here’s your guide to what to look for and where to find it

7 mins read
Business Traveler
June/July 2021

ROI FROM THE ROAD

As business travel resets, maximizing value of each trip is a bigger question than go-or-no-go

6 mins read
Business Traveler
June/July 2021

New World Travel Order

Your voice today can help shape the journeys of the future

3 mins read
Business Traveler
June/July 2021

MIXED MESSAGES

Hybrid meetings are likely here to stay, but are already morphing into something more

6 mins read
Business Traveler
June/July 2021

RETURN TO TRAVEL

Travelers and the industry both ask: Are we there yet?

8 mins read
Business Traveler
June/July 2021

REMOTE POSSIBILITIES

Digital nomads are being inspired to imagine themselves working from – just about everywhere

6 mins read
Business Traveler
June/July 2021

Points of Interest

As post-pandemic travel restarts, your loyalty may be more valuable than ever

4 mins read
Business Traveler
June/July 2021
RELATED STORIES

UNPLUG & PLAY

Making the Transition from Video Games to Board Games

6 mins read
Casual Game Insider
Summer 2022

We Feed People Reveals A Hero Who's Human

In September 2018, chef and World Central Kitchen (WCK) founder José Andrés was leading emergency relief efforts in Wilmington, N.C. “What’s your name, dear?” asked a re-porter covering the deadly impact of Hurricane Florence.

2 mins read
Wine Spectator
July 31, 2022

GIN or VODKA

Recipes that pull a switcheroo n classic gin and vodka drinks

9 mins read
Wine Spectator
July 31, 2022

Creating with a multi-colored gum method

The multi-colored gum method is complicated, long-lasting, and laborious. Moreover, due to unpredictable final effects, it is a kind of mystery that you must discover step by step.

3 mins read
Lens Magazine
May 2022

Tequila is HOT!

Tequila, particularly on the high end, is the most exciting spirit category in the United States, with unprecedented demand

7 mins read
Cigar Aficionado
May - June 2022

THE MASTERMIND

Emma Grede, the quiet power source behind two of fashions most viral success stories, steps into the spotlight.

8 mins read
ELLE
April 2022

The WFH Experts In Hot Demand

Professors who’ve long studied remote work are now sought-after business advisers

5 mins read
Bloomberg Businessweek
March 14, 2022

5 Habits of the World's Longest-Living People

A few quick steps can make the aging process go a lot slower

1 min read
Closer US
March 07, 2022

Is a Cure for Hangovers Finally Here? More Evidence Needed

Sadly, science has yet to deliver on a surefire cure for a head-pounding alcohol-induced hangover, but a recent analysis of research has found a sliver of hope.

1 min read
Wine Spectator
April 30, 2022

CRIMZON CLOVER

Revisiting a shmup that rivals the genre’s best.

8 mins read
PC Gamer US Edition
April 2022