Myanmar Airways International

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Myanmar Airways International
Myanmar Airways International Logo.svg
IATA ICAO Callsign
Founded1946; 74 years ago (1946) (as Union of Burma Airways)
Commenced operations1997
HubsYangon International Airport
Frequent-flyer programSky Smile Privilege Program
Fleet size6
HeadquartersYangon, Myanmar
Key people
  • U Aung Aung Zaw (Chairman)
  • Mr. Ryan Zwe (Vice Chairman)

Myanmar Airways International Co., Ltd. (Burmese: အပြည်ပြည်ဆိုင်ရာ မြန်မာ့လေကြောင်း) is a privately owned airline headquartered in Yangon, Myanmar.[1] It operates scheduled international services to destinations mainly in Southeast Asia and is based at Yangon International Airport. Myanmar Airways International was the sponsor of the 2013 Southeast Asian Games. MAI's logo shows pyinsarupa (Burmese: ပဉ္စရူပ), a traditional Burmese chimeric animal.


Early years[edit]

A now retired MAI Boeing 737-300 in 2002

The airline was founded by the government before independence in 1946 as Union of Burma Airways. It initially operated domestic services only. International services were added in 1950. The name was changed to Burma Airways in December 1972, and then to Myanma Airways on April 1, 1989, following the renaming of the country from Burma to Myanmar. International services were transferred to Myanmar Airways International, which was set up in 1993.[2]

Myanmar Airways International (MAI) took off in August 1993, initially created as a joint venture between Myanma Airways and Singapore-based Highsonic Enterprises, with the support of Royal Brunei Airlines. It boasted a Singapore management team (many ex-Singapore Airlines staff), new Boeing aircraft, all-expatriate cockpit crews, improved training for flight attendants and new UK Civil Aviation Authority operating standards. Eventually, the original joint venture was terminated and MAI became a wholly owned Myanmar company. In January 2001, a new joint venture was formed in which Region Air Myanmar (HK) Ltd., took a 49% stake and a local businessman[who?] through his company pyae

Co. took an 11% share and Myanma Airways retained 40%.[citation needed]

In 2001, a new corporate identity and aircraft livery were rolled out and the company completed its first major cabin-crew-upgrading program. In 2002, the airline obtained new International Air Transport Association (IATA) airline designator codes and joined both the IATA Multilateral Interline Traffic Agreement (MITA) and IATA Clearing House. The airline sent 122 employees on training courses at Malaysia Airlines and Royal Brunei Airlines training centers. In 2003, MAI launched a code-share agreement with Thai Airways International on the Bangkok-Yangon-Bangkok route. The company also has code-sharing with Malaysia Airlines, Qatar Airways and Jetstar Asia Airways. In 2004, the airline took delivery of new uniforms for ground staff and recruited a further 16 new cabin-crew trainees.

In February 2007, the foreign management team under Region Air Myanmar (HK) Ltd. transferred its control to MAI.

Expansion and modernization since 2009[edit]

MAI inherited a long history of government ownership when it was separated from Myanmar National Airlines in 1993. The new airline was initially formed as a joint venture company between Myanma Airways and a Singapore investment company. Just prior to the 2010 General Election, Myanmar's government sold an 80% stake in MAI to one of the country's largest financial institutions, Kanbawza Bank Ltd, retaining a 20% stake through the state-owned domestic carrier, Myanma Airways. In 2009 MAI received delivery of its first two aircraft with the remainder of the carrier's short-haul fleet being leased from neighboring countries. Operations radically change from 2010 under KBZ Bank's ownership with organizational and route adjustments. As well as fully commercializing the airline's operations, the carrier's controlling parent also launched a domestic partner airline, Air KBZ in June 2010.[3] Since then, MAI has been expanding its fleet and currently has a total of 5 Airbus A320s and 2 Airbus A319s in its service. It also leased Airbus A321s from Air Méditerranée in the winter of 2010-2011 and deployed them on Bangkok-Singapore services. Non-hub routes between Bangkok-Singapore and Siem Reap-Phnom Penh were successfully inaugurated in 2010 and 2011 respectively. In 2013, MAI received IOSA certificate, the only recipient in Myanmar of the IATA Operational Safety Audit Program (IOSA) Operator. In 2016, Kanbawza (KBZ) Group acquired full control of MAI. In 2018 the airline commenced services between Mandalay-Bangkok.[4]


Sky Smile Privilege Program[edit]

In this frequent-flyer program, MAI offers three levels of membership - Jade, Ruby and Diamond. Passengers who have traveled on three return flights within one calendar year are entitled to apply for the Ruby membership and start earning points required to qualify for the next level. If a passenger has completed a minimum of six return flights with his Ruby membership, the membership will automatically be moved up to the Diamond membership scheme. A Sky Smile Privilege Program member can redeem the mile points earned by flying with MAI for free travel tickets.

Sky Smile Executive Lounge[edit]

MAI Sky Smile Executive Lounge at Yangon International Airport is offered exclusively for Diamond Card Members and business class passengers. The lounge offers refreshments, entertainment and business secretary services.


Myanmar Airways International serves the following destinations:

Country City Airport Notes Refs
 China Fuzhou Fuzhou Changle International Airport Seasonal Charter
Guangzhou Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport Seasonal Charter
Hangzhou Hangzhou Xiaoshan International Airport Seasonal Charter [5]
Hefei Hefei Xinqiao International Airport Seasonal Charter [6]
Jinan Jinan Yaoqiang International Airport Seasonal Charter
Jinjiang Quanzhou Jinjiang International Airport Seasonal Charter
Linyi Linyi Shubuling Airport Seasonal Charter
Nanchang Nanchang Changbei International Airport Seasonal Charter [6]
Nanjing Nanjing Lukou International Airport Seasonal Charter
Ningbo Ningbo Lishe International Airport Seasonal Charter
Qingdao Qingdao Liuting International Airport Seasonal Charter
Yantai Yantai Penglai International Airport Seasonal Charter
 India Gaya Gaya Airport Seasonal
Kolkata Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport [7]
 Myanmar Mandalay Mandalay International Airport Secondary Hub
Yangon Yangon International Airport Hub
 Singapore Singapore Singapore Changi Airport
 South Korea Seoul Incheon International Airport [8]
 Republic of China Taipei Taoyuan International Airport
 Thailand Bangkok Suvarnabhumi International Airport

Codeshare agreements[edit]

Myanmar Airways International has codeshare agreements with the following airlines:[9]


Current fleet[edit]

The Myanmar Airways International fleet comprises the following aircraft (as of September 2019):[12][13]

Myanmar Airways International fleet
Aircraft In fleet Orders Passengers Notes
Airbus A319-100 4 144
Airbus A320-200 1 2 180
Embraer 190 1 3 124
Total 6 5

Former fleet[edit]

MAI has operated a variety of aircraft types, including:

Myanmar Airways International retired fleet
Aircraft Total Introduced Retired Notes
Airbus A321-100 5 2009 2011 Leased from Air Méditerranée
Boeing 737-400 Un­known Un­known Un­known Leased from KLM, Malaysia Airlines
Boeing 737-800 1 2003 2004 Leased from Pegasus Airlines
Boeing 757-200 1 1999 1999 Leased from Royal Brunei Airlines
Fokker 100 1 2008 2009 Leased from Air Bagan
McDonnell Douglas MD-82 3 2003 2008 Leased from Lion Air

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Offices Address Archived 2009-09-06 at the Wayback Machine." Myanmar Airways International. Retrieved on 10 October 2019.
  2. ^ "Directory: World Airlines". Flight International. 2007-04-10. p. 53.
  3. ^ "Airline Review - Myanmar Airways International". 9 April 2018.
  4. ^ "Myanmar Airways International Adds Mandalay – Bangkok from Sep 2016". Routes Online. 11 July 2016.
  5. ^ "Myanmar Airways International adds Hangzhou service in 3Q19". routesonline. Retrieved 11 July 2019.
  6. ^ a b
  7. ^ "Myanmar Airways International adds Kolkata service from Dec 2016". routesonline. Retrieved 21 October 2016.
  8. ^ "미얀마국제항공, 12월부터 인천∼양곤 직항 운항".
  9. ^ "Profile on Myanmar Airways International". CAPA. Centre for Aviation. Archived from the original on 2016-11-02. Retrieved 2016-11-02.
  10. ^ "Royal Brunei Airlines and Myanmar Airways International ink codeshare agreement". Retrieved 21 December 2017.
  11. ^ "SriLankan expands network to Myanmar in partnership with Myanmar Airways International". Retrieved 2018-09-21.
  12. ^ "Myanmar Airways International Fleet Details and History". Retrieved 25 September 2020.
  13. ^

External links[edit]

Media related to Myanmar Airways International at Wikimedia Commons