DHL X Aviationtag

DHL celebrates its 50th Anniversary with Aviationtag

Aviationtag marks 50 years of DHL by crafting a limited Aviationtag edition from one of the logistics provider’s retired cargo aircraft.

When it was founded in 1969, DHL revolutionised the traditional delivery industry with a new and innovative service. Its simplified processes meant that from then on, documents could also be delivered overnight by air. DHL is now celebrating its 50th birthday as a global brand boasting some 380,000 employees in over 220 countries and territories - and as an unwavering pioneer in the logistics industry. Also on board for 15 years: the Boeing 757 with the registration D-ALEH. In 2003, when it was converted into a purely cargo aircraft for DHL Express, for the first time in its career the Boeing was given its typical yellow-red paint job. Before then it had already served 17 years as a passenger aircraft for the airline British Airways. Another 15 years and countless letter, package and parcel deliveries later, in 2018 it was finally retired and parked in Castellon, Spain.

DHL Boeing 757 D-ALEH Aviationtag
Boeing 757 D-ALEH

When the D-ALEH arrived there last year, nobody would have guessed that just one year down the line, it would be ready for another delivery. But this is exactly what is now happening to mark DHL Express’s 50th anniversary. The logistics provider has been Aviationtag's shipping partner since 2018, so this was the perfect opportunity to expand the cooperation. In May 2019 a first meeting took place in Castellon, where the cargo plane was measured and tested, and first cuts were already taken. Now, 10,000 Aviationtags from the fuselage of the old freighter are being launched as a limited anniversary edition: so the old cargo plane has one last valuable delivery in it after all.

This involved parts of the outer skin of the retired aircraft being dismantled and cut to size at the bordbar manufactory in Cologne until they could be punched into the typical Aviationtag shape and then polished, before finally undergoing precise laser engraving. Each of the strictly limited-edition Aviationtags now features the aircraft type, aircraft registration number, edition number, edition size and, of course, the DHL logo.

The Aviationtags from the Boeing 757 D-ALEH have now been reborn as key and luggage tags - or as collector's items. While the small tags are interesting for almost anyone who loves flying and the feeling it inspires, this edition has its very own unique charm: For a decade and a half, this special freighter transported up to 40 tons of consignments to their destination with every flight. So anyone buying one of the Aviationtags® from this edition at the same time is also buying a piece of the countless stories that this aircraft has undoubtedly written. What was once scrap metal is thus transformed into a piece of air freight history.

DHL X Aviationtag


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