Wataniya Airways

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Wataniya Airways
Wataniya airways logo.gif
IATA ICAO Callsign
Founded 2005
Commenced operations January 2009
(January 2017 Second time)
Hubs Kuwait International Airport
Frequent-flyer program Wataniya Diwan
Fleet size 7
Destinations 7 (29 codeshare agreement)
Company slogan It's a Pleasure
Headquarters Kuwait International Airport
Al Farwaniyah Governorate, Kuwait
Key people Abdulsalam al-Bahar (Chairman)
George Cooper (CEO)
Website http://www.wataniyaairways.com/

Kuwait Wataniya Airways (K.S.C.) (Arabic: (شركة الخطوط الوطنية الكويتية (ش.م.ك‎‎), doing business as Wataniya Airways (Arabic: الخطوط الوطنية‎‎), is a publicly traded company on the Kuwait Stock Exchange. Wataniya Airways' hub is the exclusive Sheikh Saad Terminal in Kuwait while its corporate headquarters were on the property of Kuwait International Airport, Al Farwaniyah Governorate, Kuwait.[1] The airline was founded in 2006 and received an Air Operators Certificate in July 2008. It started services with an Airbus A320 in January 2009 from the Sheikh Saad General Aviation Terminal and provided flights from Kuwait to destinations across the Persian Gulf, wider Middle East and Europe. Wataniya Airways was the first and only commercial airline to operate its flights out of a private terminal in Kuwait. Wataniya Airways' A320 aircraft has a dual-cabin configuration composed of Business First and Premium Economy sections.[2]


Airbus A320-200 of Wataniya Airways at Istanbul Airport in January 2011.

Wataniya Airways was formed as part of the Kuwait Government’s liberalization of aviation services in 2005[3] and was founded by Kuwaiti corporations that include corporate giant Kipco which owns majority shares in the company. The airline launched a public offering of 350 million shares in January 2006, the equivalent of 70% of its capital of KWD50 million (USD 188 million), and listed its shares on the Kuwait Stock Exchange by the end of 2008.[4]

Wataniya Airways' visual identity was unveiled to the public in May 2008. The tail fin of Wataniya Airways' aircraft is purple, and features the internationally known symbol of Kuwait—the Kuwait Towers.[5]

Due to overcapacity on some flights, the airline decided in December 2010 to reduce operation, park three aircraft, and lay off some employees.[6]

On 16 March 2011, Wataniya Airways ceased all its operations because of financial difficulties, and began discussions with its shareholders to determine the future of the company.[7]

In August 2016 they announced there comeback and started operating again in January 2017.


Wataniya Airways served the following destinations as part of its scheduled services (as of 15 March 2011).[8]

* Base
[T] Terminated Destinations
City Country IATA ICAO Airport Notes Ref
Alexandria Egypt HBE HEBA Borg El Arab Airport [T]
Amman Jordan AMM OJAI Queen Alia International Airport [T]
Athens Greece ATH LGAV Athens International Airport [T]
Bahrain Bahrain BAH OBBI Bahrain International Airport [T]
Kuwait City Kuwait KWI OKBK Kuwait International Airport [Base] [8]
Beirut Lebanon BEY OLBA Beirut Rafic Hariri International Airport [8]
Cairo Egypt CAI HECA Cairo International Airport [8]
Damascus Syria DAM OSDI Damascus International Airport [T]
Dubai United Arab Emirates DXB OMDB Dubai International Airport [8]
Istanbul Turkey IST LTBA Istanbul Atatürk Airport [8]
Jeddah Saudi Arabia JED OEJN King Abdul Aziz International Airport [T]
Rome Italy FCO LIRF Leonardo da Vinci-Fiumicino Airport [T] [9]
Sharm el-Sheikh Egypt SSH HESH Sharm el-Sheikh International Airport [8]
Vienna Austria VIE LOWW Vienna International Airport [8]

Codeshare agreements[edit]

Wataniya Airways had a codeshare agreement with Austrian Airlines.


Wataniya Airways offered two classes of service: Business First Class and Premium Economy Class.[10]

  • Business First offered 26 seats in a configuration of 2×2, with a seat pitch of 44 inches.
  • Premium Economy offered 96 seats in a configuration of 3×3, with a seat pitch of 34 inches.


As of March 2011 the Wataniya Airways fleet consisted of the following aircraft:[11][12]

Wataniya Fleet
Aircraft In Service Orders Passengers
(Business, Economy)
Airbus A320-214 7 0 122 (26/96)
Total 7 0


  • January 2009: Start of commercial operations
  • April 2010: SKYTRAX Survey second place among Middle Eastern carriers in Staff Service Excellence[13]


  1. ^ "Wataniya Airlines Confirms New Jeddah Route During Opening of its New Branch at the Discovery Mall." Wataniya Airways. Retrieved on 22 June 2010. "Wataniya Airways' headquarters at Kuwait International Airport,"
  2. ^ Laessing, Ulf (2008-05-26). "Third Kuwaiti airline to take off in January". Thomson Reuters. India. Retrieved 2008-08-18. 
  3. ^ "About Wataniya Airways: our Story". Retrieved 2008-07-21.  |archive-url= is malformed: timestamp (help)
  4. ^ "Kuwait National Airways Announces KAMCO Will Manage Its Listing on Kuwait Stock Exchange" (Press release). Wataniya Airways. 2008-06-23. Retrieved 2008-06-25. 
  5. ^ "Wataniya Airways Is Born" (Press release). Wataniya Airways. 2008-05-26. Retrieved 2008-05-26. 
  6. ^ "Wataniya Airways drastically cuts its network". Air Transport World. 1 December 2010. Archived from the original on 22 February 2011. Retrieved 22 February 2011. 
  7. ^ Kuwait's Wataniya Airways ceases operations
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h Wataniya schedule
  9. ^ Wataniya flies to Rome
  10. ^ "Wataniya Airways to begin commercial flights". Kuwait Times. GulfBase. Retrieved 2008-08-28. 
  11. ^ "Third Kuwait airline to fly by early 2009". Kuwait Times. Retrieved 2008-05-21. 
  12. ^ "Wataniya Airways Announces Leasing Deal for another New A320 Aircraft". Zawya. Retrieved 2008-09-21. 
  13. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20101130164113/http://wataniyaairways.com/eng/aboutWataniyaAirways/newsroom/20100526WataniyaAirwaysStaffServiceRecognizedforExcellence.jsp. Archived from the original on November 30, 2010. Retrieved October 7, 2010.  Missing or empty |title= (help)

External links[edit]