Korean Air, once a parastatal with a horrible service record, was privatized in 1969 by the chaebol Hanjin Group under Cho Choong Hoon. Using money it picked up from running supplies to and from the Vietnam War, Hanjin turned Korean Air into a highly successful company that, in addition to its airline operations, provides maintenance and catering services, and produces aircraft (the Chang Gong 91) and components. It also operates the second-largest air cargo service on the planet, second only to FedEx.

When most people hear "Korean Air," though, they think of the airline (code KE) that is part of the Skyteam alliance with Air France and Delta Airlines. KAL flies to 77 cities in 29 countries on six continents, and their service is excellent, on par with Singapore Airlines and Japan Airlines.

Fleet statistics:
28 Boeing 747
10 Boeing 777
11 Boeing 737
20 Airbus A300
16 Airbus A330
4 McDonnell Douglas MD-80
10 Fokker 100
15 Boeing 747 freighter
4 McDonnell Douglas MD-11 freighter

The airline's logo is a yin yang similar to that on the South Korean flag: its planes are painted sky blue.

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