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Aircalin logo.svg
IATA ICAO Callsign
FoundedSeptember 1983 (as Air Calédonie International)
HubsLa Tontouta International Airport
Frequent-flyer programFlying Blue
Fleet size7
Parent companyGovernment of New Caledonia
HeadquartersNouméa, New Caledonia
Key peopleMartine Lagneau (President)
Didier Tappero (MD)
RevenueIncrease €151 million (2017)
Employees480 (2020)[1]

Société Aircalin, also known as Air Calédonie International, is the international airline of the French collectivity of New Caledonia, with its headquarters in Nouméa.[2] It operates scheduled services from its main base at La Tontouta International Airport to destinations across Oceania and Asia, including Japan, and additionally operates domestic services in Wallis and Futuna. The airline is 99% owned by the Government of New Caledonia, with the remaining 1% held by minority owners, including the airline's employees.


Air Calédonie International's first Boeing 737-300, as seen in 1989.

The airline was established in September 1983 as Air Calédonie International, an international airline to complement New Caledonia's domestic airline, Air Calédonie.[3] Between 1983 and 1985, the airline operated flights from Nouméa by leasing aircraft from other airlines including Air Nauru and Qantas. In 1985, the airline acquired a Sud Aviation Caravelle from Corsair, which it used to open routes to Sydney and Auckland until 1988, when the airline replaced the Caravelle with a Boeing 737-300. In 1987, the airline also acquired a DHC-6 Twin Otter to operate services in Wallis and Futuna. In 1996, the airline rebranded as Aircalin, unveiling a new corporate image and logo.[4]

In April 2000, Aircalin agreed on a three-year interim lease with Airbus for an Airbus A310-300 previously operated by Swissair as its first widebody aircraft. This allowed the airline to trial the viability of long-haul services, with the airline's first long-haul destination being Osaka.[5] The next year, the airline ordered two Airbus A330-200s from Airbus, which were to begin delivery upon the expiration of its Airbus A310 lease. The airline also considered the replacement of its single Boeing 737-300 with an Airbus A320-200.[6][7] Aircalin's first Airbus A330-200 proceeded to begin service in late 2002, replacing the leased Airbus A310, while the second A330-200 allowed the airline to open a new route to Tokyo, taking over Air France's service between Tokyo and Nouméa.[7][8] On 9 February 2004, the airline received its first Airbus A320-200, which replaced its Boeing 737-300.[9]

On 1 July 2014, Aircalin unveiled a new livery with the delivery of its second Airbus A320-200, the livery incorporating shades of blue inspired by New Caledonia's lagoon and skies, as well as traditional symbols.[10][11] In October 2017, the airline ordered two Airbus A320neo and two A330-900 aircraft, with the intent of replacing its two Airbus A320-200 and two A330-200 aircraft.[12][13] Aircalin's first Airbus A330-900 was delivered on 30 July 2019, and the airline subsequently planned the retirement of its Airbus A330-200 operations for September 2019.[14][15][16] Following the initial retirement of the airline's Airbus A330-200 aircraft, Aircalin returned one of its Airbus A330-900 aircraft to Airbus in November 2019, citing noxious fumes in the cabin during operation, similar to issues reported by TAP Air Portugal for their own A330-900 aircraft.[17] One of the airline's A330-200 aircraft was temporarily returned to operation for six weeks, during which the A330-900 was being investigated by Airbus and engine manufacturer Rolls-Royce until December 2019.[18]

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Aircalin in May 2020 reported a 93% drop in passenger demand since March 2020, postponed all operations outside of French repatriation flights, and announced plans to cut staffing costs by 20% through a combination of layoffs and voluntary resignations.[1] The airline also announced the suspension of its routes to Melbourne and Osaka from Nouméa, and the postponement of its Airbus A320neo deliveries from 2020 to 2023.[1] The airline in July 2020 however scheduled the resumption of services to Osaka for March 2021.[19]


Aircalin serves or has previously served the following destinations as of July 2020:[20]

Country or Territory City Airport Notes Refs
Australia Brisbane Brisbane Airport
Melbourne Melbourne Airport Terminated [1]
Sydney Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport
Fiji Nadi Nadi International Airport
France (French Polynesia) Papeete Faa'a International Airport
France (New Caledonia) Nouméa La Tontouta International Airport Hub
France (Wallis and Futuna) Wallis Hihifo Airport
Vele Pointe Vele Airport
Japan Osaka Kansai International Airport [19]
Tokyo Narita International Airport
New Zealand Auckland Auckland Airport
South Korea Seoul Incheon International Airport Terminated [21]
Vanuatu Port Vila Bauerfield International Airport

Codeshare agreements[edit]

Aircalin has codeshare agreements with the following airlines:[22][23]


Current fleet[edit]

An Aircalin Airbus A320 at Sydney Airport.
Aircalin Airbus A330neo at Sydney Airport

The Aircalin fleet comprises the following aircraft as of May 2020:[24]

Aircalin Fleet
Aircraft In
Orders Passengers Notes
C Y+ Y Total
Airbus A320-200 2 8 138 146 To be replaced by Airbus A320neo.[12]
150 158
Airbus A320neo 1[25] 1 8 160 168 Deliveries deferred from 2020 to 2023.[1]
To replace Airbus A320-200.[12]
Airbus A330-900 2 26 21 244 291
DHC-6 Twin Otter 2 16 16
Total 7 1

Former fleet[edit]

A former Aircalin Airbus A330-200 at Kansai International Airport in Osaka.

Aircalin has previously operated the following aircraft:

Aircalin Former Fleet
Aircraft Total Introduced Retired Replacement
Airbus A310-300 1 2000 2003 Airbus A330-200
Airbus A330-200 2 2002 2019 Airbus A330-900
Boeing 737-300 1 1988 2004 Airbus A320-200
Sud Aviation Caravelle 1 1985 1988 Boeing 737-300

Frequent-flyer program[edit]

Aircalin participates in Flying Blue, the frequent-flyer program of Air France–KLM. The airline originally joined as a partner of Air France's Fréquence Plus program in 1997, before it was later succeeded by and integrated into KLM's Flying Blue program in 2003.


  1. ^ a b c d e "New Caledonia airline tables cost-cutting plans". RNZ News. Radio New Zealand. 15 May 2020.
  2. ^ "Contact Us". Aircalin. Retrieved 2 October 2009.
  3. ^ "Aircalin, Air Caledonie International". Airlines Inform. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  4. ^ "History of Aircalin". Seatmaestro. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  5. ^ "Aircalin expands international services with leased A310-300". FlightGlobal. DVV Media International Limited. 24 April 2000. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  6. ^ Ionides, Nicholas (14 May 2001). "Aircalin agrees Airbus A330-200 acquisition". FlightGlobal. DVV Media International Limited. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  7. ^ a b "Aircalin buys A330s". FlightGlobal. DVV Media International Limited. 27 August 2001. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  8. ^ "Air Calédonie begins flights with A330-200". FlightGlobal. DVV Media International Limited. 30 December 2002. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  9. ^ "Aircalin Becomes New Airbus A320 Operator" (Press release). Airbus S.A.S. 9 February 2004. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  10. ^ "Aircalin arrayed in New Caledonian colours!" (PDF) (Press release). Aircalin. 1 July 2014. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  11. ^ Clark, Jonny (5 July 2014). "Aircalin, The Latest Pacific Airline To Celebrate Local Culture". TheDesignAir. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  12. ^ a b c Sanchez, Alvaro (11 October 2017). "Aircalin orders two A320neo, two A330neo". Airways Magazine. Airways International, Inc. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  13. ^ "Aircalin and SWISS choose the PW1100G to power their A320neo". Airliner Watch. 6 February 2018. Archived from the original on 27 April 2019. Retrieved 7 February 2018.
  14. ^ "Aircalin takes delivery of its first of two A330neo aircraft" (Press release). Airbus S.A.S. 30 July 2020. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  15. ^ Schlappig, Ben (30 July 2019). "Aircalin Takes Delivery Of First A330-900neo". One Mile at a Time. Retrieved 20 October 2019.
  16. ^ "New Caledonia's Aircalin to end A330-200 ops in late 3Q19". ch-aviation. ch-aviation GmbH. 22 August 2019. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  17. ^ Dewan, Akhil (18 November 2019). "Aircalin Returns Airbus A330neo After Cabin Odor Reports". AirlineGeeks. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  18. ^ Bewicke, Henry (19 December 2019). "Aircalin First Airbus A330neo Has Been Redelivered". Simple Flying. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  19. ^ a b Liu, Jim (20 July 2020). "AirCalin delays Osaka service resumption to March 2021". Routesonline. Informa Markets. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  20. ^ "Destinations served by Aircalin". Aircalin. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  21. ^ Liu, Jim (24 February 2014). "AirCalin Ends Seoul Service from March 2014". Routesonline. Informa Markets. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  22. ^ "Our Airline Partnerships". Aircalin. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  23. ^ "Profile on Aircalin". CAPA. Centre for Aviation. Archived from the original on 31 October 2016. Retrieved 31 October 2016.
  24. ^ "The Fleet". Aircalin. Retrieved 25 July 2020.
  25. ^

External links[edit]

Media related to Aircalin at Wikimedia Commons