Airside — 14 Comments

  1. Not that there’s anything inherently unhealthy about tobacco smoke, insists Schoppmann, who adds that he doesn’t believe a word of the warning labels printed on tobacco products. He’s already gotten into a public spat with the World Health Organization, dismissing public health concerns over secondhand smoke as “the biggest scam of all times.”

    “I’m just another healthy smoker,” said Schoppmann, who inhales about a pack a day. “I haven’t seen a sick smoker in my life. The only thing I see are sick nonsmokers, and they are always sick with all sorts of crap.”

    So refreshing to read that there still are people out there who haven’t been brainwashed.

  2. Hello there!
    Yes, my friends from Aeroflot told me it was America that did them in.
    By the way, Aeroflot is glamorous now, hugely expensive and hi-class (while several other airlines inherited all the familiar Aeroflot ugliness, which I remember well) – but non-smoking.
    In Asia airports in general, including Suvarna, you can smoke, just ask where it is. Even Singapore is smoking. Asia is soft and kind, besides it caters to the Chinese.

  3. Sorry, can’t confirm that business about the USA.

    However sometime in the early 90’s the Australian government did exactly the same thing. All flights going in or out of an Assie airport HAD to be non-smoking all the way, not just when they got to Aussie airspace.

    I went in early 1994 using Air NZ that was a smoke free flight, but it was only a couple of hours flying time and someone had smoked in the can (and stubbed it out in the loo ashtray).

    When booking the next leg in Aus I told the travel agent to get me the hell out via the quickest flight possible, then on to Dubai. Kick up between Malaysia or Indonesia. I chose the former because it had a far better safety record at that time. And so it was that I had a couple of nights in KL that were part of an Air Malaysia deal for Perth to London!

    Of course the KL to Dubai flight also had a smoking section, as did the one from Dubai to London.

  4. I had a very quick look through some German sites about Smintair/Schoppmann. As far as I can tell he simply couldn’t get the ‘slots’….which the article you linked to also postulated.
    I have found hints he then tried to move into TV/New media:

    “Zulassungsantrag / smint TV GmbH i. G.
    Die in Gründung befindliche GmbH hat bei der Landesanstalt für Kommunikation Baden-Württemberg (LFK) die Zulassung für das Vollprogramm beantragt. Die Verbreitung des Programms soll im High Definition Standard (HD) über Satellit, Kabel und DVB-T erfolgen. Sämtliche Anteile an der Antragstellerin hält ihr Geschäftsführer, Alexander W. Schoppmann. ” 2014

  5. Sorry Vlad, your comments ended up in my spam box for some reason. I only just found it, as I’ve been out all day. I didn’t think you wanted your ‘test’ post published, so I deleted that one.

    Yes, I read a couple of comments from Schoppmann which are scathingly dismissive of the SHS claims. There are plenty of people out there who haven’t drunk the Kool-Aid, but they are still in the minority, unfortunately.

  6. That’s interesting. A few links I found about ‘Smintair’ suggested that he’d already got the slots at both ends. A lot of conflicting reports.

    A ‘smokers’ TV channel doesn’t sound very exciting. Can’t see that making any money or being of very much interest to anyone. What do you show? Movies with people smoking? I would imagine that unless their newsroom was outdoors, they wouldn’t be allowed to smoke in the studio either. EU laws and all that.

    But the airline stood a chance of working. Both the Germans and the Japanese like smoking, and there’s a lot of business conducted between the two countries. I’d be surprised, to be honest, if the sole reason for him giving up on the airline was just over the takeoff / landing slots. I suspect there’s more to it than that.

  7. “suggested that he’d already got the slots at both ends”

    I got the distinct impression from some of the German ‘between ze lines’ about him that Herr Schoppman is one of the ‘fake it til you make it’ or ‘sell the dream then make it reality’ types of entrepreneurs (which of course isn’t bad thing per se). But that’s only my gut feeling.

    Not sure about German laws on smoking on TV or in studios, certainly never seemed to stop Helmut Schmidt and ‘interviews in private residences’ would still be legal even in the UK. Infact the German version of ITV makes a great thing of interviewing famous politicians every summer in a biergarten -although I don’t think any of them have taken the opportunity to smoke in a loooong time.Who says you have to have a studio for anything more than hiding the newscasters legs? (or in the case of Naked News-yes it’s a thing- not hiding anything).

  8. Yes, you could be right, BD. In the photos of him, he does look like a bit of a wide-boy (and I don’t mean just physically). However, although it looks like a huge task to start an airline, others have done it (Branson, Lauder), and successfully, so it’s not impossible. Maybe the dream was just too big for his abilities.

  9. I think this might be part of the explanation why Smintair didn’t take off (Yes I know that was painful). From Wiki: in 2008, initial plans were made to merge Germanwings, Eurowings and TUIfly into one airline to compete with Air Berlin and its subsidiary LTU in the German market and with easyJet and Ryanair on international routes. There would have been no slots for anyone new.

  10. Dublin Airport would come as a pleasant surprise given that Ireland cheer-led the madness. There’s a boozer on the second floor with a big french window out to the huge smoking beer garden. The place was jammers last time I was there with everyone having a drink, a smoke and a chat before their flights. It was so peaceful and normal and this was last year!

  11. Yes, I understand that Aeroflot is nowadays considered one of the better carriers, but back then, they were dire!

    Not sure that I agree with you about the Asian airports. It’s almost impossible to find somewhere to smoke airside in KL airport, and I didn’t find anywhere airside in the new Hanoi airport, although to be fair that had only just opened when I used it. I flew into the old airport and out from the new one, and there was hardly any signage, so maybe I just couldn’t find the smoking area or they hadn’t opened it yet – the airport had only been operating for a couple of days.

    In Suvarnabhumi there are smoking areas after immigration / security, but all the gates are on the fourth floor, and all the smoking areas are on the third floor, so they aren’t easy to find! And as I said, Don Muang seems to have closed all the smoking areas after security. Phnom Penh has a couple of areas airside.

    I haven’t been in very many Asian airports, so I’m no expert, but the ones I’ve been in don’t seem particularly smoker-friendly, despite the increasing numbers of Chinese tourists. 🙂

  12. The Australians are really anally retentive about smoking, aren’t they? I couldn’t believe the situation when I was last there. And customs / immigration were complete pigs. I swore I’d never set foot in the place ever again.

  13. That sounds like a pleasant change. Although from what I’ve read, Ireland leaves UK for dead when it comes to pub smoking areas. Some of the photos I’ve seen of Dublin pubs look fantastic.

    What’s the situation airside, though? There seems to be a tendency in airports to provide smoking areas landside, but once you clear security, and have nowhere to go, those areas suddenly seem to be in short supply.

    As I mentioned, in Athens airport, landside there are several comfortable choices, but once you get airside, there is nothing at all apart from in the arrivals area. Departures has zilch.