Corsair International

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Corsair International
Corsair International logo.png
IATA ICAO Callsign
SS CRL CORSAIR
Founded17 May 1981; 39 years ago (1981-05-17)
(as Corse Air International)
Operating basesOrly Airport
Fleet size4 [1]
Destinations12
Parent company
HeadquartersRungis, France
Key peoplePascal de Izaguirre
Websitecorsair.fr

Corsair International, legally Corsair S.A., and previously Corsairfly, is a French airline headquartered in Rungis[2][3] and based at Paris-Orly Airport.[4] It is a subsidiary of German investor Intro Aviation (53%) and the TUI Group (27%). It operates scheduled long-haul services to nine leisure destinations[5] in the French overseas territories, Africa, and North America, as well as charter flights to other destinations.

History[edit]

Early years[edit]

Former Corsair Boeing 747-300
Boeing 747-400 wearing the former Corsairfly livery

The airline was established in 1981 and started operations on 17 May 1981 as Corse Air International. It was founded by the Corsican Rossi family. In 1990 it was acquired by Nouvelles Frontières, a French tour operator, and the name was changed to "Corsair". Worldwide traffic rights were obtained in 1991. In 2000 TUI AG, one of the world's leading tour-operator groups, took over Nouvelles Frontières.

In 2004, Corsair aircraft were repainted with the colours of TUI, a blue fuselage with the TUI-logo, like its sister airlines. At the end of 2005 the TUI Group decided to rename all its affiliated airlines TUIfly. As an interim step Corsair aircraft were repainted with Corsairfly markings, although all airlines in the group were expected to have adopted the common TUIfly brand by 2008.[4]

The airline held the record for most seats on a passenger aircraft, with 587 seats on its Boeing 747-400s,[6] until they received a new interior which led to a new lower capacity of 533 passengers.

In 2008, the airline announced its intention to expand its medium-haul network to the Mediterranean and its long-haul network to Canada and the United States (where it regularly flew in the 1990s), including the establishment of codeshare agreements with Air Canada.[7] The first destination in this expansion was Miami in June 2010, but the rest of the plan was later abandoned due to a change in the airline's strategy.

Development since 2010[edit]

In May 2010 Corsairfly announced its "Takeoff 2012" modernisation plan, including a reduction of workforce by 25%, the replacement of three Boeing 747-400 aircraft by two Airbus A330-300 aircraft from TUI Group, the refurbishment of all aircraft cabins, leaving the charter flights market, and the termination of routes to Kenya, the Dominican Republic, Québec City, Moncton and Israel.[8][9][10]

In March 2012 the airline announced it would change its name to Corsair International and unveiled a new corporate image corresponding to planned operational changes.[citation needed]

In 2015 Corsair's owner, German tourism company TUI Group, tried to sell the loss-making airline. After take-over negotiations with Air Caraïbes, the potential buyer walked away after advanced talks due to ongoing opposition from Corsair's staff unions regarding the proposed future developments and cost reductions.[11] Also in 2015, TUI Group announced that all TUI companies and airlines except Corsair were to use the TUI name.[12]

In late 2018 it was reported that the TUI Group had restarted talks to sell the loss-making airline. It was expected to be sold by the end of the yearto German investment corporation Intro, which had owned several other airlines in the past.[13] In May 2018, a Corsair shareholder announced that Corsair International would retire its three remaining Boeing 747-400s by September 2021 as part of fleet renewal and replacement plans.[14] In March 2019, Corsair officially announced that it would lease three Airbus A330-900neo aircraft to replace its three Boeing 747-400s.[15]

In March 2019 TUI announced that it had agreed to sell 53% of Corsair to a German airline investor, Intro Aviation, for an undisclosed sum. TUI would retain 27% of the airline, while employees would hold the remaining 20%.[16]

In April 2020, the company announced that it would immediately retire its three Boeing 747-400s because of the COVID-19 crisis and grounding.[1]

Destinations[edit]

Codeshare agreements[edit]

Corsair International has codeshare agreements with the following airlines:

Fleet[edit]

Corsair International Airbus A330-200

Current fleet[edit]

The company announced on 19 April 2020 that it would immediately retire its three Boeing 747-400s because of the COVID-19 crisis and grounding. As of April 2020, the Corsair International fleet consists of the following aircraft:[1]

Corsair International fleet
Aircraft In service Orders Passengers Notes
C Y Total
Airbus A330-200 1 26 278 304
Airbus A330-300 3 [17] 26 334 360
Airbus A330-900neo 5[18][19] TBA
Total 4 [1] 5

The current mixed fleet will be transitioned to an all-A330 fleet, expected to comprise 13 aircraft by 2023.[18]

Previous fleet[edit]

Corsair previously operated the following jet aircraft types, with short-term leases being excluded:[20]

Corsair International retired fleet
Aircraft Introduced Retired Replacement Notes
Airbus A340-300 2014 2018 None
Boeing 737-200 1995 2000 None
Boeing 737-300 1992 2004 None
Boeing 737-400 1999 2006 None
Boeing 747-100 1991 1998 Boeing 747-300
Boeing 747-200 1992 1997 Boeing 747-300
Boeing 747-300 1995 2007 Boeing 747-400
Boeing 747SP 1994 1996 Boeing 747-400
Boeing 747-400 1996 2020 Airbus A330-900neo
McDonnell Douglas DC-10-30 1995 1996 Boeing 747-400

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d https://simpleflying.com/corsair-747-retirement/
  2. ^ "Historique de Corsairfly Archived 2009-08-05 at the Wayback Machine." Corsairfly. Retrieved on 2 June 2009.
  3. ^ "Nos métiers Archived 2009-08-30 at the Wayback Machine." Corsairfly. Retrieved on 23 September 2009. "CORSAIRFLY – DRH 2 avenue Charles Lindbergh 94636 RUNGIS Cedex "
  4. ^ a b "Directory: World Airlines". Flight International. 2007-04-03. p. 69.
  5. ^ "Contenu de la balise "Title"". Retrieved 10 July 2015.
  6. ^ "Corsair.fr". Archived from the original on 7 October 2008. Retrieved 10 July 2015.
  7. ^ "Corsair : Etats-Unis, Québec et Israël en ligne de mire". Archived from the original on April 14, 2008.
  8. ^ "Corsairfly: plan de 380 départs volontaires sur deux ans". Retrieved 15 April 2019.
  9. ^ "Corsair.fr". Retrieved 10 July 2015.
  10. ^ "Corsair restructuring decision expected this week". Retrieved 2010-10-18.
  11. ^ "Gespräche in letzter Minute gescheitert: Tui wird Corsair doch nicht los" [Discussions failed at the last minute: TUI can't get rid of Corsair]. aeroTELEGRAPH. Retrieved 10 July 2015.
  12. ^ "Arke Fly kicks off TUI Group rebranding exercise". ch-aviation. Retrieved 2017-03-01.
  13. ^ "Tui verkauft französische Corsair an Intro" [TUI sells French Corsair to Intro]. airliners.de. 18 October 2018.
  14. ^ "Corsair International - Book Flights and Save". www.alternativeairlines.com. Retrieved 15 April 2019.
  15. ^ Clark, Oliver (19 March 2019). "Corsair to lease A330neos and go all-Airbus under new owner Intro". Flightglobal.com. Retrieved 15 April 2019.
  16. ^ Clark, Oliver (18 March 2019). "TUI confirms sale of majority stake in Corsair to Intro". Flightglobal.com. Retrieved 15 April 2019.
  17. ^ Corsair International web site, consulted on April,22 2020 (before site was updated to reflect B747 early retirement announced on April 19 2020) https://www.corsair.fr/flight/services/Travel-classes/corsair-fleet
  18. ^ a b Clark, Oliver (19 March 2019). "Corsair to lease A330neos and go all-Airbus under new owner Intro".
  19. ^ "France's Corsair International accelerates fleet renewal". Ch-Aviation.
  20. ^ https://www.airliners.net, photos of Corsair aircraft

External links[edit]

Media related to Corsair International at Wikimedia Commons