The need for air shipment increased in the 1980s, and UPS focused on expanding its presence in the skies. Deregulation of the airline industry allowed new opportunities for UPS, as some established commercial carriers reduced flights and even abandoned some routes completely. In order to ensure the company's reputation for dependability, UPS took steps toward creating its own fleet of airplanes.
With increasing public demand for quicker service, UPS entered the overnight air delivery business. By 1985, UPS Next Day Air service was available in all 50 states and Puerto Rico. That same year, UPS introduced international air package and document service between the U.S. and six European nations. In 1988, UPS won approval from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to operate its own aircraft, thus launching UPS Airlines. Organized in slightly more than one year with all the needed technology and support systems, UPS Airlines was the fastest airline start-up in FAA history. Today, it is one of the world's largest airlines.
Currently, UPS runs an international package and document network in more than 220 countries and territories. With its worldwide services, UPS moves over 15 million packages through its network each business day.