S.C. „Compania Națională de Transporturi Aeriene Române – TAROM” S.A., commonly known simply as TAROM, is the flag carrier airline of Romania. Its main base is the Henri Coandă International Airport in Bucharest (formerly known as the Otopeni airport). The airline operates scheduled domestic services and international services to destinations in Europe, Africa and the Middle East. 95% of TAROM is owned by the Romanian Government (Ministry of Transport). The brand name TAROM is an acronym for Transporturile Aeriene ROMâne (Romanian Air Transport). The airline transported 1.69 million passengers in 2007 (a 32.1% increase compared to the previous year); this makes TAROM the second-fastest growing airline in Europe, after Brussels Airlines.
Being part of the group of the airlines belonging to Soviet Bloc states, TAROM operated Soviet-design Li-2, Ilyushin Il-14, Ilyushin Il-18, Ilyushin Il-62, Antonov An-24, and Tupolev Tu-154 aircraft. An exception was made in 1968 when it bought the BAC One Eleven in 1968 for European and Middle East destinations, and in 1974 when TAROM acquired Boeing 707 aircraft for its long haul operations. In 1978 a contract was signed with the UK to manufacture the BAC One Eleven near Bucharest. Meantime the 707 and Il-62 long range aircraft were operating New-York (via Amsterdam, later London and finally Vienna), Abu-Dhabi-Bangkok-Singapore, and Karachi-Beijing. TAROM was the only Soviet Bloc airline to operate flights to Tel-Aviv, Israel.
It was only after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 that the airline was able to acquire more Western-built jets. By 1993, TAROM had introduced long haul flights to Montreal and Bangkok, using Ilyushin Il-62, and Airbus A310 aircraft.
During the 1990s, TAROM replaced its long-haul fleet of Boeing 707s and IL-62s with three new A310 jets. In 2001 the airline cancelled its non-profitable long haul services to Bangkok and Montreal and also terminated services to its remaining intercontinental destinations of Beijing (in 2003), Chicago (in 2002), and New York City (in 2003).
TAROM terminated loss-making domestic services to Craiova, Tulcea, Caransebeş, and Constanţa) and focused its activity on service to key destinations in Europe and the Middle East. 2004 was the first profitable year of the last decade.
TAROM is recovering from a difficult period that began in the 1990s, when losses of up to $68 million a year were registered, caused by unprofitable routes. At the beginning of the new millennium, the airline initiated a program that was aimed at restoring profitability. This was achieved by terminating loss-making intercontinental services.
TAROM has decided to focus its operations on Bucharest (Henri Coandă International Airport) (OTP) and Cluj-Napoca International Airport (CLJ). Codeshare agreements with foreign partner airlines are in place for several international routes. To meet competition from Carpatair, which uses the city of Timişoara in Western Romania as its hub city, TAROM has initiated direct international flights from Sibiu, Cluj-Napoca and Bacău. In June 2005 it was announced as one of the future associate members of SkyTeam alliance, initially due to join by 2006. A fleet upgrade program started in 2006 with the acquisition of the first two Airbus A318 (from a total of four ordered) which resulted in a fleet increase from 16 planes (in Nov. 2006) to 22 (as of 2007).
The airline has a frequent flyer programme Smart Miles.
|Airbus A310-300||2||209 (20/189)||Madrid, Larnaca, Tel Aviv, Vienna||Exit from service: 2008 |
Replacement aircraft: Boeing 737-800
|Airbus A318-111||4||113 (14/99)||Europe, domestic (Cluj Napoca, Timişoara)|
|Boeing 737-300||4||116 (14/102) |
138 (138) (Charter configuration)
|Boeing 737-700||4||116 (14/102)||Europe, Middle East, Africa|
|Boeing 737-800||(3 orders)||189||To join the fleet in November 2008|
|ATR 42-500||7||48 (10/38)||Domestic/International short haul|
|ATR 72-500||(2 orders)||Domestic/International short haul||Entry into service: 2009|
In November and December 2006, Tarom took delivery of its first two Airbus A318-111 (YR-ASA and YR-ASB), becoming only the second commercial operator of this type of aircraft in Europe. In the fall of 2007, two more Airbus A318 have joined the fleet, bringing the total number of aircraft to four. The Airbus A318 planes are being used on routes from Bucharest to Brussels, Frankfurt, Munich, Paris and Vienna .
After reintroducing the 2 Airbus A310 to the fleet, Tarom realized their inefficiency and decided to sell them. Tarom Executives stated discussions with Airbus and Boeing are still underway, but 4 Boeing 737-800 will probably be chosen as replacements..
The average fleet age of the TAROM fleet is 8.8 years.
TAROM has codeshare agreements with the following airlines as of July 2007: