Smoking not Allowed
It may be hard to imagine today but during most of the 20th century smoking was allowed on board passenger flights all over the world. And it weren't just cigarettes, also pipes and cigars were popular. This was no different in the Soviet Union.
With a third or more of all passengers smoking, the airplane cabins were filled with tobacco smell and smoke. Clothing, suitcases, hair, flight attendant uniforms - everything stunk. While seated, some smoking passengers were holding their lighted cigarettes hand out into the aisle. Flight attendants had to dodge them to avoid ashes on their uniform or burn holes in their panties. Flying was often a non-smokers nightmare but in those days it was acceptable and even promoted. Although this was not always the case, as seen on this 1948 timetable folder which states that smoking on board is prohibited.
Over the years, worldwide protest against smoking on board grew stronger, for obvious health and safety risks. In the USA smoking was banned on domestic flights of two hours or less in April 1988. In February 1990, this was extended to domestic flights of six hours or less. In 2000, all domestic and international flights were non-smoking.
In Russia, inflight smoking was banned several years later. On Aeroflot flights the smoking ban was first introduced on flights up to two hours. From 1 July 2001 the ban was on all flights up to four hours, and since 31 March 2002 all Aeroflot flights are non-smoking.
On this page you see original cigarette packs, cases, ashtrays, lighters and matchboxes decorated with Aeroflot publicity, its aircraft or an airport. Excellent graphic design guaranteed.
Opposition against smoking is from all times and places, not in the least from aviators, who in their airtight cabins were among the most exposed to health risks. In the March 1960 edition of the Soviet 'Civil Aviation' magazine, the following letter was published.
FRIENDLY ADVICE - STOP SMOKING!
Eastern wisdom points to three "benefits" of smoking: a thief will not come to you at night; you will not be bitten by another's dog; you will not grow old. Why? The smoker coughs at night, and the thief will think the owner doesn't sleep. Because of illnesses, the one who smokes will not be able to walk without a stick and uses it when meeting a dog. And until old age, he will not live, because he will die young.
Smoking is harmful to everyone and especially for those who fly. Each member of the crew of the Il-14 plane has only two cubic meters of rarefied, dry, poorly ventilated air. And if the crew members smoke, they can not breathe normally in flight, poison their bodies day after day.
Nicotine narrows the blood vessels and leads to their blockage. Because of this, in our air group, flight mechanics comrades Sinelnikov, Shipilov and navigator comrade Yusov almost lost their legs. After quitting smoking, they defeated the disease.
I smoked twenty-five years and began to feel bad in flight. I would not be able to fly more if I had not stopped smoking six years ago. My health improved immediately. I warmly urge all smokers in Aeroflot and, first of all, the flight crew - stop smoking immediately and forever! A positive example of comrades helps to get rid of this harmful habit. Therefore, it is better to refuse smoking by the whole crew.
It's time to ban smoking in all public places and, perhaps, in the passenger cabins of aircraft, at least on domestic routes.
Flightmechanic V. PORYVAEV, Frunze.
Сигареты - Cigarettes
Aeroflot pack containing 4 cigarettes, with high-grade № 1 paper, made in the Riga Tobacco Factory (RTF), Latvia. Selling price was 8 kopecks.
VVST (ГОСТ) 1505-48
Aeroflot pack of 20 cigarettes with filter of the highest grade №3 made by Tobacco Factory "Flame" (Tubakavabrik "Leek") in Tallinn. One side is printed with stylized Aeroflot titles in Russian and the other in Estonian language. Selling price 24 kopecks.
Aeroflot pack of 20 cigarettes with filter of the highest grade №3 made by the Tobacco Combined Factory in Pryluky, Ukraine. СССР Минпищепром УССР Укртабакпром. Selling price 24 kopecks.
Cigarette pack 'Райдуга', Ukrainian for 'Rainbow', made by the Kiev Tobacco Factory on the order of Aeroflot. СРСР МХП УРСР Укртютюнпром Тютюнова Фабрика. 20 cigarettes, selling price 18 kopecks.
Fly by Aeroflot
Small pack of 10 cigarettes decorated with an Ilyushin 18. Text is only in English. Unfortunately the pack is empty.
Aeroflot pack with the silhouette of a Tu-114 and an Il-18. It was made by the Tobacco Factory of Lviv (ТФЛ) in Ukraine. It contains 20 cigarettes of grade №3 and was sold for 24 kopecks. МХП УРСР Укртютюнпром Тютюнова Фабрика Львiв.
Aeroflot pack with the silhouette of a Tu-144 breaking the sound barrier. It was made by the Tobacco Factory of Lviv (ТФЛ) in Ukraine. It contains 20 cigarettes of grade №3 and was sold for 24 kopecks. On the pack is mentioned: 'The ministry of health warns that smoking is dangerous for your health', which is rather exceptional for the 1960's. СРСР МИНХАРЧОПРОМ УРСР Укртютюнпром Тютюнова Фабрика.
This beautiful Armenian cigarette pack shows an Ilyushin 18 with the globe and Mount Ararat in the background. It contains 20 cigarettes with filter and was sold for 30 kopeks. One side is in Armenian and the other in Russian language. It was produced in the Yerevan Experimental Tobacco combined factory. СССР МПП АРМ ССР
Cigarette pack issued for the 50th anniversary of Aeroflot in 1973 and showing the Tu-144. In the same year a Tu-144 crashed at the Paris/Le-Bourget airshow. The pack contains 20 cigarettes with filter and was produced by the Java tobacco factory.
This pack shows the new Manas airport building and control tower with an Il-62 taxiing by. A silhoutte of another airliner is overhead. The pack was sold for 30 kopecks and contains 20 cigarettes of highest quality with filter. It was produced in the Frunze Tobacco Factory. Минпищепром Киргизской ССР. ЛХЦП
Aeroflot pack with its logo made by the Baku Tobacco Combined Factory (Бакинский Табачный Комбинат, БТК). It contains 20 first class cigarettes with filter and was sold for 40 kopecks. 'The ministry of health warns that smoking is dangerous for your health'. МПП Азербяйджанской ССР.
Not only Aeroflot issued cigarettes, the aircraft manufacturers also did. This Antonov box ' Airplanes "An" ' contains 10 packs of 20 high quality cigarettes with filter made by КТФ, the Kiev Tobacco Factory in the late 1960's. The front of the box shows the logo of the Antonov aircraft design bureau with the four cardinal directions. Inside 10 colourful packs illustrated with the An-2, An-2M, An-12, An-14, A-15 glider, An-22, An-24, An-24T, An-26 and the An-30. Price 3 крб. 70 коп. МРТУ 18/191-67
286 x 170 x 30 mm
Planes AN "Antey"
The box is decorated with an An-22 "Antey". Inside Antey and the Antonov logo surrounded by flags of countries where Antonovs were exported. There were 6 packs of 20 higher grade N°3 cigarettes with filter made by КТФ, the Kiev Tobacco Factory: An-2, An-24, An-14, An-10, An-12 and An-22. Unfortunately all were smoked. Price 1 крб. 60 коп. ГОСТ 3935-58
185 x 152 x 25 mm
Металлические Портсигары - Metal Cigarette Cases
40 Years Aeroflot USSR
Metal cigarette case made for the 40th anniversary of Aeroflot in 1963. An Aeroflot stewardess welcomes you while two Tupolev 114s are flying overhead the capital. One of Moscow's 'Seven Sisters' and the Kremlin can be seen.
80 x 105 x 16 mm
Пепельницы - Ashtrays
Inaugural Flight Moscow - Washington
Black glass ashtray portraying an Il-62 for the inaugural flight Moscow - Washington on April 5, 1974. Flight SU-317/318 was operated once a week, on friday, by Il-62M on the route Moscow/Sheremetyevo-1 - Paris/Orly - Washington. This direct air link between the capitals of the USSR and the USA was highly significant. Many passengers were employees of the Soviet Embassy in the USA and the US Embassy in the USSR.
212 x 98 mm
Moscow - New York
Black glass ashtray portraying a Tu-144 flying from Moscow to New York together with the address of New York's Aeroflot office. The Tu-144 has never flown this route.
151 x 72 mm
Aeroflot Soviet Airlines
Porcelain ashtray with gold-painted edges. It shows an Aeroflot Tu-144 over the world map.
diameter 170 mm
Made in bronze, this ashtray has the Aeroflot titles and logo with a Tupolev Tu-134.
82 x 124 mm
Ceramic ashtray with gold-painted edges, 'Aeroflot' titles with its logo and 'Sverdlovsk', now the city of Yekaterinburg. It was made in the Porcelain Factory in Sysert, a small town just south of Yekaterinburg. Price was 1 rub. 34 kop.
diameter 120 mm
Зажигалки - Lighters
In reality, Soviet people often lit a cigarette with matches while lighters were bought mostly as souvenirs. Each year in the Soviet Union, limited series of lighters dedicated to various memorable dates were issued, such as the 1980 Olympics, the revolution and military victories of the past. Also lighters with symbols of the Soviet Union or logos of various large institutions of that time were produced (VDNKh, Aeroflot). After 1961 a popular topic was space exploration with Gagarin's portraits and spaceships.
Domestic manufacturers often copied lighters of Western companies, for example Zippo. However, Soviet copies were not inferior in quality, although they were a lot cheaper than foreign ones.
Gasoline lighter "Ogonek", Aeroflot. It is a copy of a lighter of the famous Colibri Monopol company and was produced in the Soviet Union without the acquisition of patent rights.
43 x 44 x 14 mm
Спичечные Коробки - Matchboxes
Nowadays most smokers use disposable lighters...it's cheap, handy, hygienic....and boring! In Soviet times, smokers always had matches in their pocket. The self-respecting Soviet gentleman would never light a cigar from a surrogate spark of a lighter - only a tree, only matches, a natural product would do.
Lighters were expensive and sometimes broken. They had to be refueled with gas or gasoline, and from time to time it was necessary to change the flint or the wick. Gas lighters also don't work well above 10,000 feet.
11 labels showing the flight time between different cities in the USSR, 5-6 times faster compared to traveling by train. 7 of them made by the 'Proletarian Banner' match factory (ф-ка Пролетарское знамя) in Chudovo, a small city 130 km southeast of Saint Petersburg.
The last 4 labels are made by the Gigant match factory (ф-ка Гигант, главфанспичпром) in Kaluga, 150 km south-west of Moscow.
ГОСТ 1820 - 45
This set of 5 labels was made in 1959 by the Sverdlovsk match factory (Свердловский СНХ СПИЧ Ф-КА) in Turinsk, a small town at the eastern shore of the river Tura, 250 km north-east of Sverdlovsk (now Ekaterinburg).
ГОСТ 1820- 56
Large box with Aeroflot label (not shown) containing 1 large matchbox and 16 small ones (35 x 54 mm). All 16 present an Aeroflot destination. They were made in 1959 at the Balabanovo Experimental Factory (Балабановская Экспериментальная Фабрика), 96 km southwest of Moscow.
Three labels made in 1959 by the Sverdlovsk match factory (Свердловский СНХ СПИЧ Ф-КА) in Turinsk.
ГОСТ 1820- 56
Seven labels made in 1962 by the Sverdlovsk match factory (Свердловский СНХ СПИЧ Ф-КА) in Turinsk. Flight times from Sverdlovsk (Ekaterinburg) to Moscow, Adler and Odessa are shown and promoting flying on Il-18, Tu-104 and An-10.
48 x 35 mm,60 шт.
ГОСТ 1820- 56
This set was made for the 40th anniversary of Aeroflot in 1963. The matches with the red labels (60 шт.) were made in 1962 by the Borisov's plywood-match combined factory (СНХ БССР БОРИСОВСКИЙ Ф/С КОМБ.), a city in Belarus, 74 km north-east of Minsk. The boxes with the blue labels (75 шт.) at the plywood-match combined factory of Pinsk, in the south of Belarus.
ГОСТ 1820- 56
Large box with Aeroflot label containing 1 large matchbox and 16 small ones (35 x 55 mm). 15 of them represent each a Soviet Republic and 1 says 'Resort Lines Aeroflot'. They were made at the Balabanovo Experimental Factory (Балабановская Экспериментальная Фабрика) in 1962.
These 9 nicely designed labels were made in 1962 by the Gomel combined factory (СНХ БССР ГОМЕЛЬСКИЙ Ф/С КОМБ.) in Belarus, 75 matches in each box. They were also produced in a 60 matches/box version at the Borisov's plywood-match combined factory (СНХ БССР БОРИСОВСКИЙ Ф/С КОМБ.), a city in Belarus, 74 km north-east of Minsk.
33 x 48 mm
ГОСТ 1820-56 * 75ШТ or 60 ШТ
These 5 labels '40 Years Aeroflot' present the major aircraft of the Aeroflot fleet. The set was made at the Liepaja combined factory (Kombinats - Baltija - Liepaja) in Latvia in 1963.
V.V.St (ГОСТ) 1820-56 60 Serkocini.
Colourful set promoting Aeroflot, their main aircraft and some flight times between Soviet cities. There's one large boxlabel with 1 medium and 16 small matchbox labels. The set was made in 1963 by the 'Proletarian Banner' match factory (ф-ка Пролетарское знамя) in Chudovo.
Ten labels made in 1964 by the Blagoveshchensk Factory 'Iskra' in the Amur Oblast.
ГОСТ 1820- 56
Aeroflot Brussels-Moscow in 3 Hours by Tu-104
Comfort - Speed. Visit the USSR "Intourist" Go to your travel agency
Ilyushin-62 Aeroflot Soviet Airlines
'Fly by Aeroflot, the largest airline in the world. Russian Cuisine and Enchanting Atmosphere. Montreal - Moscow'
These matches were made in Canada