What Happened To Donald Trump’s $365 Million Airline?

What Happened To Donald Trump’s $365 Million Airline?


– You look great.
Trump: Everybody have it?
Narrator: Things used to be
a lot different for Donald Trump.
– Mr. Trump, who’s your
lovely date tonight?
This is Melissa.
– Hi.
Narrator: In the 1980s…
Donald Trump was a star.
– His name sells.
And when you think
business, you think Trump.
My son, he’s 22 years old,
and Mr. Trump is his hero.
We’re from Oregon, and Donald
Trump is popular out there.
He’s my idol.
I really respect him,
and I think he’s amazing.
Everything he does
seems to turn into gold.
Narrator: By 1988, Trump was
a major name in real estate.
The New York Times called him
one of the richest men in the world,
with an estimated net worth of $3 billion.
And he bought the luxurious
Plaza Hotel for $390 million.
For Donald Trump, the next logical step
was buying an airline.
– Yo, Joe!
– The Trump Organization
was a holding company
with various assets.
Those assets included
hotels, apartment buildings,
and other real estate assets.
Narrator: That’s Henry Harteveldt.
Donald Trump hired him
as the marketing director
for Trump Shuttle.
– Mr. Trump thought that having an airline
would complement his other
travel-related holdings,
and that’s why he was interested in it.
– You can fly clear across the USA.
Narrator: In the 1980s, air travel
was a completely different ball game,
especially if you were
flying for business.
– The Eastern Air Shuttle,
a guaranteed seat without a reservation.
Narrator: Shuttle services
from airlines like Pan Am
and Eastern offered
flights between New York,
Boston, and Washington
that took off every hour.
In 1988, a workers’ strike at Eastern
drove the airline to a halt.
– There was an open
auction for the shuttle.
Several different airlines submitted bids.
At the end, it became
the Trump Organization
and America West, and the
Trump Organization prevailed.
Narrator: Trump secured $365
million from a consortium
of banks to make a bid
for the Eastern Shuttle.
After a meeting with
airline owner Frank Lorenzo
at Trump’s Plaza Hotel, the deal was done,
and Trump Shuttle was born.
– How you doing?
Have a good flight.
Narrator: Trump Shuttle’s fleet
consisted of 21 Boeing 727s.
Trump spent $1 million
to refurbish each plane.
– We were the first
plane out this morning.
We were the most successful
flight this morning.
We had more people than anybody else,
and I think we had better
service than anybody else.
Narrator: Trump Shuttle
offered quick flights
between three east coast
destinations: Logan Airport
in Boston, LaGuardia in New
York, and Reagan in D.C.
– The first week or so
was really disorganized because, you know,
it was a brand new airline.
And the pilots just
got it all figured out.
It was 64 flights a day
between three cities,
and, you know, it ran like clockwork.
Narrator: Trump’s purchase
of the Eastern Shuttle
created over 1,000 new jobs,
many of which were filled
by Eastern employees out
of work due to the strike.
Employees like Rosemary
Durant, a Boston-based
flight attendant who got
a job with Trump Shuttle.
– I was a flight attendant
with Trump Shuttle
from the beginning to the end.
I began my career with Eastern Airlines.
Towards the end of Eastern Airlines
we had the opportunity to bid off
to work for the Trump Shuttle.
It was strictly a lottery system.
It was an opportunity to continue flying,
continue getting a paycheck.
I had a place to go.
I had a job that I loved.
I got to continue working.
He saved us.
– We’re gonna really be a good competitor,
and I think it’s gonna be a lot of fun.
Harteveldt: So the primary
competitor that we flew against
was Pan Am, Pan Am Shuttle,
and a very, very fine
competitor to have,
because Pan Am forced us
to bring our A game to the shuttle market.
Narrator: In true Trump fashion,
he soon went after his competition.
– I love competing against Pan Am.
If you’ve got to compete,
I mean, if you’ve got to compete,
Pan Am is the one you
want to compete against.
Narrator: Trump didn’t just troll Pan Am
at press conferences.
He also poached their talent,
hiring former Pan Am Shuttle president
Bruce Nobles, to run Trump Shuttle.
– Safety, everyone says, “Oh,
don’t ever mention safety.”
I want to mention safety.
To me, it’s very important.
The safety is number one priority.
– There is an unwritten rule
in the airline business:
you never attack another
carrier’s maintenance and safety.
Mr. Trump attacked Pan Am’s maintenance,
and that’s just something you don’t do.
Narrator: Trump suggested that Pan Am’s
financial struggles might
jeopardize the airline’s safety,
and his remarks soon
came back to bite him.
– And this represents one of the fleet
of your new shuttle
service from here to where?
Watch this, Don.
Whoa, my God, whoa!
Narrator: In August of 1989 …
a Trump Shuttle flight made
an emergency landing in Boston
when the plane’s front
landing gear malfunctioned.
No one on-board was hurt,
but Trump Shuttle’s trouble
was just beginning.
– Smoke rising from the barracks
where the Royal Guard still hold out.
Narrator: The invasion of Kuwait in 1990
and the subsequent Gulf War
sent oil prices skyrocketing,
and the United States was
on the brink of a recession.
– That affected all airlines,
not just the Trump Shuttle.
People just were not flying.
As far as the Trump
Shuttle became concerned,
the bankers said, “Hey, look,”
“this is not financially sustainable.”
It became clear that the Trump Shuttle
would not grow as an airline.
Narrator: Trump fired 100 employees.
Just 18 months after the
Trump Shuttle launched,
the airline had already lost $128 million.
In 1992, Donald Trump
decided it was time to bail.
Trump Shuttle’s majority
stakeholder, Citigroup,
started negotiating a sale with US Air,
who still saw value in the product.
Donald Trump claimed he didn’t
lose money on the shuttle.
He told the Boston Globe, “I’m smart.”
“I got out at a good time.”
– It seems like he kind of
just washed his hands of it,
said the airline business is very tough,
and moved on to whatever was next.
Narrator: As for Trump Shuttle employees,
many of them kept their
jobs and transitioned
to becoming employees of the
newly-named US Air Shuttle.
– [David Manley] It
really wasn’t a failure.
I think it was pretty successful.
I mean, Trump saved our
careers, I mean, absolutely.
They really took care of their employees.
My wife, who had breast cancer,
the CEO of the company,
he said, “Hey, any bills”
“that aren’t covered,
just leave it on my desk.”
I left some bills on those desks.
It was like, I don’t know,
a $30,000 pharmacy bill.
You know, that’s how I was treated,
and so I’m sure that came down from Trump.
I don’t have anything bad to say.

100 thoughts on “What Happened To Donald Trump’s $365 Million Airline?”

  1. Investment manager Jeffrey Epstein was arrested in New York Saturday on federal charges related to sex trafficking, CBS News has confirmed. The financier has long been accused of sexually abusing underage girls, and in 2007, he pleaded guilty to two prostitution counts in a Florida court as part of a controversial deal to avoid federal charges. His attorney Alexander Acosta, who is now Trump's labor secretary.

  2. Does anyone really care ? Trump is the comeback kid , he released his financials and we all know he’s worth billions 💁🏻

  3. Love hearing how he failed ultimately. and the CEO that helped you and your wife dude Trump probably bitched him out for it .

  4. Oregon has become a socialist state so no they probably don’t like trump but they love the low gas price they love low prescription price they love everything Trump has done but will never admit to it because if they go the way they want to go a socialist state they would collapse within a week they would be begging Donald Trump to come back to the White House

  5. If Democrats have their way socialism will be in full bloom in the one world order for Bloom within one month they will be begging for Donald Trump to come back and bailed him out of the nightmare they have created

  6. When Donald Trump sold the airline in the deal they had to keep his employees and why wouldn’t day he hires a top-notch employees where were they get anyone better so we save their jobs twice

  7. He was deceitful then & is deceitful now…buying businesses is my name & screwing people eventually is my game!

  8. Outside of Portland, Oregon is deeply conservative state. It's just that for federal elections, Portland and the other cities are large enough to consistently outweigh the rural areas.

  9. Bankrupt pathological liar & cheat. Only in his own mind is he a great businessman. He’s someone very few should ever do business with. Screws investors regularly. As long as he gets paid—no problem.

  10. The first week of Trump shuttle 1989 creepy donalds bullshit same today as it was back then and the organisation of the airline same back then as it is today Chaotic. When trump says it's important to me means I don't really care. One thing creepy donald is good at, and that is losing money.

  11. Crashed & burned like everything ELSE…but can't help thinking he's somehow pocketed BIG bucks from all those debacles. 🖓😈

  12. If trump was a real businessman which he isn't because he lacks any knowledge of economics, those businesses could of been successful. By being a MORONIC CEO proves why he had six bankruptcies and numerous product failures. In so many words Trump is the worst CEO in America!

  13. For sure Trump did not need Epstein's services. Money , celebrity status and power gets you easily hot women.

  14. So if you know anything about Trump, you should know that he grew up with the positive thinking approach. I feel most very successful people think this way. It does not mean they don't fail because everyone does. I feel the point is that you still try. I live within 5 min of Trump golf course in Rancho Palos Verdes. The manager of his club is Hispanic and started as a busboy. He told me he worked hard and Trump noticed him and supported his growth. He is now the manager. Don't believe the liberals or fake news. He really his a quality human.

  15. Trump has FAILED at every business he has ever tried. He is an actor who thinks lying is part of the script. His current “apparent” wealth is no doubt thanks to laundering Russian money.

  16. All you idiots who bash Trump need to get an education: any businessman, especially one with the chutzpah of Donald Trump, is going to have wins and losses – at the end of the day, you count it all up and if you end up with hotels all over the world, golf courses all over the world, you own several multi-story office buildings, and you're worth a couple of $billion or more – then you're doing pretty well. I doubt that any of you morons who find it sporting to criticize people who are infinitely more successful that yourselves, can grasp what I'm saying to you but, its worth a try. You show me a person who never failed at any thing and I will show you a person who never did anything worth doing. You people suck!! Stop criticizing other people and do something with your sorry lives. And yes, I'm criticizing you because you deserve it, you good-for-nothing waste of skin.

  17. This was just one of his many business failures. Now he's regrouping at the expense of the taxpayers. What a waste.

  18. I wonder about that husband of the beautiful wife with breast cancer. It smacks of recent Trump silence payments. Could it be that Trump was behind covering his $30,000 pharmaceutical bill. A 'payment'? She looks like Trump's "type"…but then he wasn't up to those shenanigans back then, was he?

  19. So then the USA gov screwed the airline carriers with the gulf war. I can see why trump got fed up with the clowns in government. Tromp 2020 MAGA

  20. TRUMP IS SO CHEAP HE WOULD NOT TRIM HIS EYE BROWS LO LAND THAT HAIR THE DANIEL BOONE RACCOON LOOK.. TRUMP IS A LYING CON MAN

  21. What hapeen to all Trump fail bankrupt business ? he get them writer off and the tax payer or peoples he owe pick up the tag ? somebody have to pay Trump debt.

  22. Too bad Trump isn’t in charge of airlines today. Nobody likes to fly any more. It’s an exercise in passenger mistreatment.

  23. "Everything he touches turns to gold"??? Ladies and gentlemen the man who couldn't make money out of a casino 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣

  24. So he decided he no longer wanted to pursue the airline industry ….he still treated people well better than just employees , whats the problem……and he sounds the same now

  25. He desperately wanted the video of himself talking about groping women never got out…just a spoiled loser playing with dads money

  26. All you need is a bank and back, you cab buy anything. Rent it out, and if your smart it for enough and can find enough gullible people you make your payment with money left over. If you can’t figure that out you loose.

  27. Trump is a spoiled child that has turned in to be an incompetent corrupt clown….
    He inherrited an "empire" from his father and went bankrupt SIX times….

  28. Hey Becky you must be one of Trump supporters now, because if you didn't know then that he was a CON you don't or want to know it NOW. Trump is so corrupt, all from lies and he does not change, note he is was still saying, "We are the best" I need to stop watch cause I want to vomit.

  29. Did he blow up the planes to get the insurance…or did the people that flew with him get food poisoning….or did his pilots not take geography or science ……or did he sell them to sex traffickers…..what, how did he blow that
    Business?

  30. He did this with the USFL, remember that. He single handed totally put it in to bankruptcy because he wanted to compete with NFL and everyone told him not to.

  31. Trump s an idiot he’s been goading Iran into a war. If we strike Iran remember it’s Kushners peace plan. There he goes getting people killed again.

  32. I wonder how many people still admire this conman:

    1991: Trump Taj Mahal. (Bankrupted)
    1992: Trump Castle Hotel & Casino. (Bankrupted)
    1992: Trump Plaza Casino. (Bankrupted)
    1992: Trump Plaza Hotel. (Bankrupted)
    2004: Trump Hotels & Casino Resorts. (Bankrupted)
    2009: Trump Entertainment Resorts (Bankrupted)
    2019 : United States of America ( future Bankruptcy / RECESSION )

    Trump FAIL businesses:

    Trump airline
    Trump ice water
    Trump the game
    Trump casino
    Trump magazine
    Trump mortgage
    Trump steak
    Trump travel site
    Trump comes company
    Trump tower Tampa
    Trump university
    Trump vodka
    Tour de trump
    The New Jersey generals football team
    Trump on the ocean
    Trump network
    Trump radio show
    Trump media
    Trump foundation (fraud)
    Now United States of Americ

  33. Wow! So in America, judging by all his fans even way back then…there is indeed a sucker born every minute?

  34. Trump has always been a con man… a loser and a total idiot … no matter what he touches..it turns to shit and dies

  35. All those billions but he COULDN'T and still CAN'T afford a decent haircut or EYEBROW management. And not a friend in the world to TELL HIM!

  36. What’s with Trump’s fecking eyebrows? I can only think it’s to catch any chicks that happen to fall out of that nest head of his.

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