Air Arabia

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Air Arabia
Air Arabia Logo.svg
IATA ICAO Callsign
Founded3 February 2003; 17 years ago (2003-02-03)
Commenced operations28 October 2003 (2003-10-28)
Frequent-flyer programAirRewards
AllianceArab Air Carriers Organization
Fleet size57
Parent companyAir Arabia PJSC
Key people
RevenueIncrease AED 3.7 billion(FY 2014)[1]
ProfitIncrease AED 566 million(FY 2014)[1]
Total assetsIncrease AED 10.574 million (FY 2014)[2]
Total equityDecrease AED 5.054 million (FY 2014)[2]
Employees2,302 (Dec, 2013)[3]

Air Arabia (Arabic: العربية للطيرانal-ʿArabiyya aṭ-Ṭayarān) is an Emirati low-cost airline with its head office in the A1 Building Sharjah Freight Center, Sharjah International Airport. The airline operates scheduled services to 170 destinations in the Middle East, North Africa, the Indian subcontinent, Central Asia and Europe to 22 countries from Sharjah, 28 destinations in 9 countries from Casablanca, Fez, Nador and Tangier, 11 destinations in 8 countries from Ras Al Khaimah, and 6 destinations in 4 countries from Alexandria. Air Arabia's main base is Sharjah International Airport. There is also a hub in Ras Al Khaimah , Abu Dhabi and focus cities in Alexandria and Casablanca.[4] Air Arabia is a member of the Arab Air Carriers Organization.


Air Arabia (العربية للطيران) was established on 3 February 2003 by an Amiri decree issued by Sultan bin Muhammad Al-Qasimi, the Ruler of Sharjah and member of the Supreme Council of the United Arab Emirates, becoming the first low-fare airline in the Middle East.[5] The airline started operations on 28 October 2003.[6] The airline broke even during first year of being in business.[7] It launched an initial public offering for 55% of its stock early in 2007.[4]

In March 2014, Airbus delivered its 6000th A320 family aircraft to Air Arabia.[8]

Corporate affairs[edit]

Air Arabia AirbusAir Arabia Airbus A320.jpg

Management and ownership[edit]

Air Arabia launched in October 2003 and was the first low-cost carrier in the Middle East.[6] The airline was listed on the Dubai Financial Market and traded under ticker symbol: (DFM: AIRARABIA).[citation needed] The company reported more than AED 19 billion in Q4 2019.[9] The airline broke even in its first year of operation.[7] Air Arabia consists of a group of airlines and companies offering travel and tourism services across the Middle East and North Africa.[5]

The board of directors consists of seven members.[citation needed] The current[when?] board was elected in March 2014 for a period of three years.[citation needed] Arabia closely monitors its board's actions and discourages the trade of shares within the board members.[citation needed] In 2014, the board members did not participate in any trade of Air Arabia Shares.[10]

As of the March 2014 Annual General Meeting, the board members consisted of the following members:[11]

Board Member Title
Sheik Abdullah bin Mohammed Al Thani Chairman of the Board
Adel Abdulla Ali Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director
Sheikh Mohammed Bin Abdullah Al Thani Independent Director
Mr. Samer A. Katerji Independent Member
Sheikh Khalid Bin Issam Al Qassimi Independent Member
Mr. Waleed Al Sayegh Independent Member
Mr. Matar Al Blooshi Independent Member


The headquarters is in the Sharjah airport Freight Center,[12] on the property of Sharjah International Airport. The airport is 15 kilometres (9.3 mi) away from central Dubai.

Joint ventures[edit]

Air Arabia has created joint ventures at four international bases. The following countries have had or still do have JV airlines based there:


Air Arabia Egypt (2010–present) - On 9 September 2009, Air Arabia announced Air Arabia Egypt as a joint venture with Egyptian travel and tourism company Travco Group to be based in Alexandria, Egypt.[13][dead link] The airline received its operating license on 22 May 2010, with commercial flights beginning 1 June 2010.[citation needed] The fleet in Egypt consists of three aircraft, two operating a scheduled service and one carrying charter traffic from Europe to the Red Sea.[citation needed]


In January 2015 Air Arabia announced the acquisition of a 49% stake in Petra Airlines.[14] The principal shareholder of Petra Airlines, the RUM Group, retain a 51% stake in the airline, which will be rebranded as Air Arabia Jordan in early 2015.[14] The first flights of the new airline took place during the week commencing 18 May 2015, with launch destinations being Kuwait, Sharm El Sheikh, Erbil, and Jeddah.[15] Air Arabia Jordan ended operations in 2018.[16]


Air Arabia Maroc (2009–present) - Air Arabia, in a joint venture with Moroccan investors established Air Arabia Maroc and set up a secondary base in Morocco's largest city, Casablanca.[17] It began operations in May 2009, allowing Air Arabia to expand into Europe and Africa.[17][18]

The Maroc fleet consists of ten aircraft serving mainly European destinations.[citation needed]


Fly Yeti (2007–2008) - In 2007, Air Arabia opened a base in Nepal's capital Kathmandu to serve Asia and the Middle East, after signing a joint venture agreement with Yeti Airlines.[19] It established a low-cost carrier, Fly Yeti, that provided service to international destinations.[19] Due to the uncertain political and economic situation prevailing in Nepal and lack of local government support, FlyYeti operations were suspended in 2008.[citation needed]

Business trends[edit]

The key trends for Air Arabia over recent years are shown below (as at year ending 31 December):[20][21]

2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
Turnover (AED m) 181 411 749 1,283 2,066 1,972 2,080 1,796 2,832 3,183 3,729 3,825 3,778 3,739 4,122 4,758
Profits (AED m) N/A 31 101 369 510 452 310 195 424 435 566 530 481 365 -579 1008
Number of passengers (m) 0.5 1.1 1.8 2.7 3.6 4.1 4.5 4.7 5.3 6.1 6.8 7.64 8.0 8.5 8.72 9.43
Passenger load factor (%) 68 79 80 86 85 80 83 82 82 80 81 79 82 79 81 83
Number of aircraft (at year end) 3 5 8 11 16 21 25 29 33 34 39 41 46 50 53 55
Number of Destinations 15 23 32 37 44 45 65 69 82 90 100 170
Notes/sources [20] [20] [20] [22] [23] [24] [25] [26] [27] [28] [20] [29] [21] [21] [29] [29]


As of December 2014, Air Arabia serves 116 airports across the Middle East, North Africa, Asia and Europe, with the latest being Cairo.[30][31]


The Air Arabia fleet consists of the following aircraft as of August 2020:[32][33]

Air Arabia Fleet
Aircraft In Service Orders Passengers Notes
Airbus A320-200 52 168 The New Livery is currently being applied to the entire Air Arabia Fleet[34]
Airbus A320neo 73 TBA Order announced in the 2019 Dubai Air Show [35]
Airbus A321neo 27 TBA Order announced in the 2019 Dubai Air Show [35]
Airbus A321LR 5[36] 1 215[37]
Airbus A321XLR 20 TBA Order announced in the 2019 Dubai Air Show[35]
Total 57 121


Air Arabia has had the same livery design since its founding in 2003.[citation needed] The aircraft body is painted in three different colors red, grey and white.[citation needed] The tail and each aircraft engine bear the company logo of Sharjah in the form of a bird.[citation needed]

Celebrating 15 years of service in October 2018, a new livery was introduced and was applied to the fleet.[34] The updated logo features a large red bird logo coming down from tail to rear fuselage with grey accents behind its wings and billboard style AirArabia title in English on the front of aircraft with small Arabic title placed next to it above the windows, bird logo also adorns the engines while title in applied on red winglets.[34]


In 2015, Air Arabia rolled out the AirRewards program, the first loyalty programme by a low-cost carrier in the Middle East and North Africa region.[38] Points can be earned and shared with anyone, AirRewards points act like a currency for the airline.[39]

Air Arabia does not serve alcoholic beverages on its flights.[citation needed]

Accidents and incidents[edit]

As of March 2017, Air Arabia has not had any fatal accidents or incidents and has a very good safety record.

  • 2 November 2013: An Air Arabia Airbus A320-200, registration A6-ANH operating as flight G9-522 from Chittagong to Sharjah with 161 people on board, was climbing from Chittagong when an engine (CFM56) ingested a bird prompting the crew to return to Chittagong for a safe landing.[40]
  • 16 March 2014: An Air Arabia Airbus A320-200, registration A6-ANL operating as flight G9-454 from Sharjah to Kozhikode with 171 passengers and 6 crew, was en route over the Arabian Sea southwest of Mumbai when the crew received a smoke indication in one of the cargo holds. The aircraft diverted to Mumbai for a safe landing. Attending emergency services found no trace of fire, heat or smoke.[41]
  • 3 May 2014: An Air Arabia Airbus A320-200, registration A6-ABQ operating as flight G9-551 (dep 2 May) from Sharjah to Sialkot with 162 passengers, was en route at FL370 near Multan when the crew needed to shut down the left hand engine (CFM56) and diverted to Multan for a safe landing.[42]
  • 30 May 2014: An Air Arabia Airbus A320-200, registration A6-ANQ operating as flight G9-522 from Chittagong to Sharjah with 137 people on board, was climbing from Chittagong's runway 23 when the crew stopped the climb at 7000 feet due to problems with the cabin pressurization and returned to Chittagong for a safe landing on runway 23 about 15 minutes after departure.[43]
  • 18 September 2018: An Air Arabia Airbus A320-200, registration A6-ANV performing flight G9-111 from Sharjah to Salalah, was taxiing for departure from Sharjah's runway 30, the aircraft entered the runway for an intersection departure from taxiway B14 and turned into direction runway 12 (opposite to intended direction), takeoff distance available from B14 on runway 12 was 1020 meters/3350 feet instead of 3010 meters/9900 feet in direction of runway 30, including the paved runway end safety area a paved surface of 1150 meters/3760 feet was available in direction of runway 12. The crew commenced takeoff from intersection B14 along direction runway 12, managed to become airborne in time to avoid any obstacles, climbed out to safety and continued to Salalah for a landing without further incident. [44]
  • 28 October 2020: An Air Arabia Airbus A320-214, registration A6-ANS performing flight G9-455 from Kozhikode to Sharjah was en-route when a variation in the cabin air balance was noticed which prompted the pilots to land back at the airport 10 minutes after departure. The issue was fixed and the flight continued its travel a few hours later.[45]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Air Arabia 2014 full year net profit climbs 30% to AED 566 million". Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  2. ^ a b "Air Arabia Balance Sheet". GulfBase. Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  3. ^ "Air Arabia Member profile". Arab Air Carriers Organization. Archived from the original on 13 December 2014. Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  4. ^ a b "Directory: World Airlines". Flight International. 27 March 2007. p. 52.
  5. ^ a b "Middle East and Africa LCCs: huge growth opportunities, but challenges". CAPA - Centre for Aviation. Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  6. ^ a b "Air Arabia marks 15th anniversary with new brand identity". Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  7. ^ a b "Air Arabia achieves breakeven in its first year". Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  8. ^ "The A320 Family: 6,000 deliveries and counting". Airbus Industrie. 10 March 2014. Archived from the original on 10 June 2015. Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  9. ^ Arabian Business (10 February 2020). "Air Arabia reports record profit on new routes, improved efficiencies". Arabian Business. Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  10. ^ "Air Arabia 2014 Annual Report" (PDF). Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  11. ^ "Air Arabia PSJC Bloomberg Profile". Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  12. ^ "Contact Info Archived 20 October 2012 at the Wayback Machine." Air Arabia. Retrieved on 21 June 2010. "Air Arabia (UAE) Air Arabia Head Quarters Sharjah Freight Center (Cargo),at Sharjah International Airport P.O. Box 132 Sharjah, United Arab Emirates" - Arabic Archived 18 September 2013 at the Wayback Machine: "العربية للطيران الامارات مركز الشارقة لنقل البضائع (الشحن) ،بالقرب من مطار الشارقة الدولي ص. ب. 132 الشارقة، الإمارات العربية المتحدة"
  13. ^ "Air Arabia announced new Egyptian airline". Archived from the original on 27 September 2011. Retrieved 8 October 2011.
  14. ^ a b "Air Arabia buys 49% stake in Jordan's Petra Airlines". Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  15. ^ "Jordan's aviation market is set for a major shake-up as Air Arabia Jordan enters". CAPA - Centre for Aviation. Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  16. ^ "20 airlines that have folded this year". The National. Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  17. ^ a b "Air Arabia Maroc is Morocco's third largest carrier with 6.7% of seat capacity; Casablanca remains #1; four new airports join network". 25 January 2017. Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  18. ^ "Air Arabia's Morocco base to open in 2009". CAPA - Centre for Aviation. Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  19. ^ a b "Yeti Airlines goes international, Orient Thai comes to Nepal". The Himalayan Times. 21 January 2008. Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  20. ^ a b c d e "Air Arabia Investor Presentation" (PDF). Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  21. ^ a b c "FINANCIAL RESULTS Q4/FULL YEAR 2017" (PDF). Retrieved 2 November 2018.
  22. ^ "Air Arabia Investor Presentation 2007" (PDF). Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  23. ^ "Air Arabia Investor Presentation 2008" (PDF). Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  24. ^ "Air Arabia Investor Presentation 2009" (PDF). Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  25. ^ "Air Arabia Investor Presentation 2010" (PDF). Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  26. ^ "Air Arabia Investor Presentation 2011" (PDF). Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  27. ^ "Air Arabia Investor Presentation 2012" (PDF). Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  28. ^ "Air Arabia Investor Presentation 2013" (PDF). Retrieved 12 September 2020.
  29. ^ a b c "Resluts presentation FY 2019" (PDF). Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  30. ^ "Destinations - Air Arabia". Air Arabia. Retrieved 19 December 2013.
  31. ^ "Air Arabia adds Cairo as its 90th Worldwide Destination". IANS. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
  32. ^ "Air Arabia Fleet Details and History".
  33. ^ "Fleet of Air Arabia".
  34. ^ a b c "Air Arabia introduces new livery". Retrieved 2 November 2018.
  35. ^ a b c André Orban (18 November 2019). "Air Arabia orders 120 Airbus A320neo Family aircraft, including 20 A321XLRs". Retrieved 18 November 2019.
  36. ^ Nick Wenzel (13 April 2019). "Air Arabia receives its first Airbus A321LR". International Flight Network. Retrieved 19 April 2019.
  37. ^ "Air Arabia leases six new Airbus A321neo LR aircraft to serve longer range routes". 14 November 2017. Retrieved 29 March 2018.
  38. ^ "Air Arabia launches loyalty program 'Airewards'". Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  39. ^ "Airewards FAQ". Air Arabia. Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  40. ^ "Arabia A320 at Chittagong on 2 November 2013, bird strike". Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  41. ^ "Arabia A320 near Mumbai on 16 March 2014, cargo smoke indication". Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  42. ^ "Arabia A320 near Multan on May 3rd 2014, engine shut down in flight". Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  43. ^ "Arabia A320 at Chittagong on 30 May 2014, cabin did not pressurise". Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  44. ^ "Incident: Arabia A320 at Sharjah on Sep 18th 2018, intersection line up departed in wrong direction". Retrieved 14 June 2020.
  45. ^ "Air Arabia flight does emergency landing soon after take off from Kozhikode airport". The News Minute. 29 October 2020. Retrieved 29 October 2020.

External links[edit]

Media related to Air Arabia at Wikimedia Commons