Mahan Air

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Mahan Air
هواپیمائی ماهان
Mahan Air Logo.svg
IATA ICAO Callsign
Founded 1991[1]
Commenced operations June 1992
Focus cities
Frequent-flyer program Mahan and Miles
Fleet size 54
Destinations 61
Company slogan The Spirit of Excellence
Parent company Mol-Al-Movahedin Charity Institute
Headquarters Aryashahr, Tehran, Iran
Key people Hamid Arabnejad, Chairman & CEO
Employees 3,300 [2]

Mahan Airlines, operating under the name Mahan Air (Persian: هواپیمایی ماهان Havâpeymâye Mâhân‎‎) is a private airline based in Tehran, Iran.[3][4] It operates scheduled domestic services and international flights to the Far East, Middle East, Central Asia, and Europe. Its main home bases are Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport and Mehrabad International Airport.

The U.S. has imposed sanctions on Mahan Air three times since 2011 for allegedly shipping arms to the Syrian government, ferrying members of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and providing transport for the Lebanese militia Hezbollah.[5]


Mahan Air Tower the headquarters of Mahan Air, Tehran, Iran

Mahan Air as a Full-Service Carrier (FSC), was established in 1991 and began operations in June 1992 as Iran's first private airline. The name of Mahan is taken from historical city of Mahan in Kerman Province. The Airline joined the IATA in 2001 and is owned by Mol-Al-Movahedin Charity Institute (100%).

Three Airbus A300B4 passenger aircraft were acquired in 1999 and later in 2002 A310 and A320 types joined the fleet. According to the British High Court, three 747-400s were unlawfully taken by Mahan Air from their real owners, Blue Sky Airlines, in 2008, using forged bills of sale. When ordered to bring the aircraft back to Europe, Mahan apparently claimed they could not do so because they were being investigated by the Iranian authorities for fraud and the aircraft had to be kept in Iran.[6] The Fleet has gone through an extensive modernization since 2006 as Boeing 747-400’s, A300-600's, RJ-100’s as well as A340-600’s were gradually acquired to enable Mahan Air to provide additional capacity on its current destinations as well as extending its reach to further destinations worldwide.

The airline carried 5.4 million passengers in 2015 with an average load factor of 77% and in mid-2015 had a fleet of 60 aircraft, making it the largest airline in Iran based on seat numbers and fleet size. It operates scheduled passenger services to international destinations in Europe, Far East and the Middle East. Mahan Air has an extensive domestic route network too. The airline commenced Copenhagen and Paris (CDG) services in the first half of 2016. On 6 April 2016 Mahan Air was banned from flying over Saudi Arabian airspace.[7]

On 12 December 2011, the U.S. Department of Treasury announced the designation of Mahan Air as a material and transportation supporter of terrorism "for providing financial, material and technological support to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force (IRGC-QF). Based in Tehran, Mahan Air provides transportation, funds transfers and personnel travel services to the IRGC-QF." [8]

Since December 2011, Mahan Air has been subject to several sanctions imposed by the US Department of Treasury for allegedly violating international laws by ferrying arms and reinforcements to designated groups such as Hezbollah and Hamas,[9][10] which promote "terrorism" according to the United States and European Union.[11][12]

Emanuele Ottolenghi, senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, wrote in an op-ed published in The Wall Street Journal.[13]

Ottolenghi observed that although the U.S. government “has repeatedly committed itself to grounding” Mahan Air, which the IRGC uses to transport troops and weapons to support the regime of Bashar al-Assad, the airline continues to fly and is in fact expanding its international routes. He added that Mahan is the most “significant” Iranian entity remaining under American sanctions, explaining:

"...A Western intelligence report leaked to Reuters in 2012 confirmed that Mahan was at the center of the IRGC airlift to the Assad regime.

...Treasury in 2012 raised concerns about Mahan violations of civil-aviation rules, including the use of “a combination of passenger and cargo flights and declaring illicit cargo as humanitarian and other licit goods.” Nearly five years into Syria’s civil war, Mahan continues to offer the IRGC steady logistical support."

In May 2016, Representative Brad Sherman and two dozen other members of U.S. Congress wrote David O'Sullivan, the EU ambassador to the U.S. urging the EU to "promptly end Mahan Air's operations in Europe," saying that doing so would "signal to European businesses that the EU will remain vigilant in acting against Iranian companies supporting terrorism and Assad's regime."[14]

Corporate affairs[edit]

Mahan Air is headquartered in Tehran.[15] Its current slogan is "The Spirit of Excellence."[16]

Mahan Air loyalty programme, called the Mahan Club "Mahan & Miles", includes access to special lounges and dedicated "fast" queues.[17]



Current fleet[edit]

Mahan Air Airbus A310-300
Mahan Air Airbus A340-600

The Mahan Air fleet consists of the following aircraft as of February 2017.[18]

Mahan Air Fleet
Aircraft In Service Order Passengers Notes
J Y Total
Airbus A300-600R 14 24 256 280[19] One wet-leased to Syrian Air
Airbus A310-300 10 12 190 202[20]
24 164 188[21]
Airbus A340-300 4 30 269 299[22]
30 261 291[23]
Airbus A340-600 7 38 264 302[24]
British Aerospace 146-300 17 100 100[25]
Boeing 747-300 2 26 434 460[26]
Total 54

Former fleet[edit]

Former Mahan Air Airbus A300B4-200
Former Mahan Air Airbus A320-200
Former Mahan Air Boeing 747-400

Over the years, Mahan has operated the following aircraft types:[27][28]

Mahan Air historical fleet
Aircraft Retired Notes
Airbus A300B4-100 2013
Airbus A300B4-2C 2006 Stored at OIKK and it's being used for cabin crew training
Airbus A300B4-200 2006 Sold to Iraqi Government
Airbus A320-200 2008 3 sold to Iran Air[29]
Airbus A321-100 2004 Leased from Blue Wings
Boeing 747-400 2012 Stored due to US sanctions[30][31][32]
Lockheed L-1011 TriStar 2005 Leased from SkyGate
McDonnell Douglas MD-82 2009 Leased from Best Air
McDonnell Douglas MD-83 2006 Leased from Bulgarian Air Charter
Tupolev Tu-154 2005 Sold to Caspian Airlines
Tupolev Tu-204-120 2006 Leased from Cairo Aviation

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 4 January 2014. Retrieved 4 January 2014. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Sales Office [Iran]" Mahan Air. Retrieved on 17 February 2011. "Tehran Central Sales office: Mahan Air Tower, Azadegan St., Karaj Highway, Tehran 1481655761- Iran."
  4. ^ "Contact Us." Mahan Air. Retrieved on 17 February 2011. "Address : Mahan Air Tower, Azadegan St., Karaj Highway, Tehran 1481655761- Iran"
  5. ^ "U.S. Sanctions Triggered by Plane Sale to Iran's Mahan Air". WSJ. Retrieved 23 May 2015. 
  6. ^ "Mahan Air & Anor v Blue Sky One Ltd & Ors [2011] EWCA Civ 544". BAILII. 11 May 2011. Retrieved 7 August 2013. 
  7. ^
  8. ^ "Treasury Designates Iranian Commercial Airline Linked to Iran's Support for Terrorism". Retrieved 10 July 2015. 
  9. ^ "Treasury Sanctions Supporters of Iran's Ballistic Missile Program and Terrorism-Designated Mahan Air". United States Department of the Treasury. 24 March 2016. Retrieved 11 September 2016. 
  10. ^ "Iran Still Operating U.S.-Sanctioned Airline in Support of Assad, IRGC". Foundation for Defense of Democracies. 17 September 2015. Retrieved 11 September 2016. 
  11. ^ [1]
  12. ^ [2]
  13. ^ Ottolenghi, Emanuele (2016-02-03). "Flying in the Face of U.S. Sanctions". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved 2016-11-14. 
  14. ^ "US, Europe at odds over Revolutionary Guard-backed airline". Fox News. 2016-11-02. Retrieved 2016-11-24. 
  15. ^ "Travel Classes". Mahan Air. Retrieved 25 May 2014. 
  16. ^ "Travel Classes". Mahan Air. Retrieved 25 May 2014. 
  17. ^ "Mahan & Miles - Terms & Conditions". Mahan Air. Retrieved 25 May 2014. 
  18. ^
  19. ^
  20. ^
  21. ^
  22. ^
  23. ^
  24. ^
  25. ^
  26. ^
  27. ^ "Mahan Air Fleet". Retrieved 5 August 2013. 
  28. ^ "Mahan Airlines Fleet Details and History". Retrieved 5 August 2013. 
  29. ^ "Mahan Air Fleet of A320 (History)". Retrieved 9 August 2013. 
  30. ^ "B747-400, EP-MNA". ch-aviation GmbH. Retrieved 25 August 2013. 
  31. ^ "B747-400, EP-MNB". ch-aviation GmbH. Retrieved 25 August 2013. 
  32. ^ "B747-400, EP-MNC". ch-aviation GmbH. Retrieved 25 August 2013. 

External links[edit]

Media related to Mahan Air at Wikimedia Commons