Air Arabia
IATA ICAO Callsign
Founded3 February 2003; 20 years ago (2003-02-03)
Commenced operations28 October 2003 (2003-10-28)
Frequent-flyer programAirRewards
AllianceArab Air Carriers Organization
Fleet size64
Parent companyAir Arabia PJSC
Key people
  • Abdullah bin Mohammed Al Thani
  • Adel Ali
    (Group CEO)
RevenueDecrease AED 1.9 billion(FY 2020)[2]
ProfitDecrease AED -0.2 billion(FY 2020)[3]
Total assetsIncrease AED 10.574 million (FY 2014)[4]
Total equityDecrease AED 5.054 million (FY 2014)[4]
Employees1,353 (Dec 2020)

Air Arabia (Arabic: العربية للطيران al-ʿArabiyya Lit-Ṭayarān) is an Emirati low-cost airline with its head office in the A1 Building Sharjah Freight Center, Sharjah International Airport, UAE. The airline operates scheduled services to 170 destinations in the Middle East, North Africa, the Indian subcontinent, Central Asia and Europe to 22 countries from Sharjah, 28 destinations in 9 countries from Casablanca, Fez, Nador and Tangier, 11 destinations in 8 countries from Ras Al Khaimah, and 6 destinations in 4 countries from Alexandria. Air Arabia's main base is Sharjah International Airport. There are also hubs in Ras Al Khaimah and Abu Dhabi and focus cities in Alexandria and Casablanca.[5]


Air Arabia
Air Arabia‘s old logo used till 2016

Air Arabia (العربية للطيران) was established on 3 February 2003 by an Amiri decree issued by Sultan bin Muhammad Al-Qasimi, the Ruler of Sharjah and member of the Supreme Council of the United Arab Emirates, becoming the first low-fare airline in the Middle East.[6] The airline started operations on 28 October 2003.[7] The airline broke even during first year of being in business.[8] It launched an initial public offering for 55% of its stock early in 2007.[9]

In March 2014, Airbus delivered its 6000th A320 family aircraft to Air Arabia.[10]

Corporate affairs

Management and ownership

Air Arabia launched in October 2003 and was the first low-cost carrier in the Middle East.[7] The company reported more than AED 19 billion in Q4 2019.[11] The airline broke even in its first year of operation.[8] Air Arabia consists of a group of airlines and companies offering travel and tourism services across the Middle East and North Africa.[6]

As of the March 2014, Annual General Meeting, the board members consisted of the following members:[12]

During 2019, Air Arabia filed a misdemeanour case against Arif Naqvi, the Pakistani founder and CEO of private equity firm Abraaj Capital following arbitration measures taken by it during 2018. Naqvi was also a Director of Air Arabia until 2018, and the airline was one of Abraaj’s unsecured creditors with a loan of $75 million in default.[13]

Board Member Title
Sheik Abdullah bin Mohammed Al Thani Chairman of the Board
Adel Abdulla Ali Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director
Sheikh Mohammed Bin Abdullah Al Thani Independent Director
Samer A. Katerji Independent Member
Sheikh Khalid Bin Issam Al Qassimi Independent Member
Waleed Al Sayegh Independent Member
Matar Al Blooshi Independent Member


The headquarters is in the Sharjah airport Freight Center,[14] on the property of Sharjah International Airport. The airport is 15 kilometres (9.3 mi) away from central Dubai.

Joint ventures

Air Arabia has created joint ventures at four international bases. The following countries have or did have JV airlines based there:

Abu Dhabi

Air Arabia Abu Dhabi (2020–present). The airline was launched on July 14, 2020 after the signing of an agreement between Etihad Airways and Air Arabia.[15] Air Arabia Abu Dhabi will support the network of destinations and services provided by Etihad Airways, and in turn will meet the needs of the low-cost and growing travel sector in the region.[16]


Fly Arna (2021–present). In September 2021, Air Arabia announced a joint venture with the Armenian National Interests Fund (ANIF) to launch a new national airline called Fly Arna. Fly Arna will operate as a low-cost passenger airline with Yerevan’s Zvartnots International Airport (EVN) as its base.[17]


Air Arabia Egypt (2010–present). On 9 September 2009, Air Arabia announced Air Arabia Egypt as a joint venture with Egyptian travel and tourism company Travco Group to be based in Alexandria, Egypt.[18] The airline received its operating license on 22 May 2010, with commercial flights beginning 1 June 2010.[citation needed] The fleet in Egypt operates scheduled service and charter traffic from Europe to the Red Sea.[citation needed]


Air Arabia Jordan (2015–2018). In January 2015 Air Arabia announced the acquisition of a 49% stake in Petra Airlines.[19] The principal shareholder of Petra Airlines, the RUM Group, retain a 51% stake in the airline, which will be rebranded as Air Arabia Jordan in early 2015.[19] The first flights of the new airline took place during the week commencing 18 May 2015, with launch destinations being Kuwait, Sharm El Sheikh, Erbil, and Jeddah.[20] Air Arabia Jordan ended operations in 2018.[21]


Air Arabia Maroc (2009–present). Air Arabia, in a joint venture with Moroccan investors established Air Arabia Maroc and set up a secondary base in Morocco's largest city, Casablanca.[22] It began operations in May 2009, allowing Air Arabia to expand into Europe and Africa.[22][23]

The Maroc fleet serves mainly European destinations.[citation needed]


Fly Yeti (2007–2008). In 2007, Air Arabia opened a base in Nepal's capital Kathmandu to serve Asia and the Middle East, after signing a joint venture agreement with Yeti Airlines.[24] It established a low-cost carrier, Fly Yeti that provided service to international destinations.[24] Due to the uncertain political and economic situation prevailing in Nepal and lack of local government support, FlyYeti operations were suspended in 2008.[citation needed]


Fly Jinnah (2021–present). In September 2021, Air Arabia announced a joint venture with Pakistani conglomerate Lakson Group to launch a low cost airline called Fly Jinnah. This will be a budget carrier serving domestic and international routes from Pakistan.[25]

Business trends

The key trends for Air Arabia over recent years are shown below (as at year ending 31 December):[26][27]

2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020
Turnover (AED m) 181 411 749 1,283 2,066 1,972 2,080 1,796 2,832 3,183 3,729 3,825 3,778 3,739 4,122 4,758 1,851
Profits (AED m) N/A 31 101 369 510 452 310 195 424 435 566 530 481 365 -579 1008 -192
Number of passengers (m) 0.5 1.1 1.8 2.7 3.6 4.1 4.5 4.7 5.3 6.1 6.8 7.64 8.0 8.5 8.72 9.43 2.91
Passenger load factor (%) 68 79 80 86 85 80 83 82 82 80 81 79 82 79 81 83 79
Number of aircraft (at year end) 3 5 8 11 16 21 25 29 33 34 39 41 46 50 53 55 57
Number of Destinations 15 23 32 37 44 45 65 69 82 90 100 170 184
Notes/sources [26] [26] [26] [28] [29] [30] [31] [32] [33] [34] [26] [35] [27] [27] [35] [35] [36]

As the pandemic hit airline services, Air Arabia reported a net loss of AED192 million ($56.2 million) in 2020. Also, the turnover for Q4 of 2020 was 53% below Q4 of 2019.[37] The airline’s net profits in Q1 of 2021 fell by 52% to AED 33.844 million. Also, revenue generated in Q1 of 2021 was AED 572.145 after witnessing major drop from AED 901.374 million in Q1 of 2020.[38]


Main article: List of Air Arabia destinations

As of July 2021, Air Arabia serves up to 120 airports across the Middle East, North Africa, Asia and Europe.[39][40]


The Air Arabia group fleet consists of the following aircraft as of December 2022:[41]

An AirArabia Airbus A321LR
An AirArabia Airbus A321LR
Aircraft In Service Orders Operator Passengers Notes
Airbus A320-200 55 33[41] Air Arabia 168 The New Livery is now applied to the whole Air Arabia Fleet[42]
9[41] Air Arabia Maroc
8[41] Air Arabia Abu Dhabi
4[41] Air Arabia Egypt
1[41] Air Arabia Jordan
Airbus A320neo 73[41] TBA Order announced in the 2019 Dubai Air Show [43]
Airbus A321-200 3[41] Air Arabia TBA
Airbus A321neo 27[41][43] TBA Order announced in the 2019 Dubai Air Show [43]
Airbus A321LR 6[41][44] Air Arabia 215[45]
Airbus A321XLR 20[41][43] TBA Order announced in the 2019 Dubai Air Show[43]
Total 64 120


An Air Arabia Airbus A320 in the former livery

Air Arabia has a livery with the aircraft body being painted in three different colors red, grey and white.[citation needed] The tail and each aircraft engine bear the company logo of Sharjah in the form of a bird.[citation needed]

Celebrating 15 years of service in October 2018, a new livery was introduced and was applied to the whole fleet.[42] The updated logo features a large red bird logo coming down from tail to rear fuselage with grey accents behind its wings and billboard style AirArabia title in English on the front of aircraft with small Arabic title placed next to it above the windows, bird logo also adorns the engines while title in applied on red winglets.[42]


Air Arabia provides passengers free food and drinks on neither domestic nor international flights. Passengers can purchase catering onboard. [46]

Air Arabia does not serve alcoholic beverages on its flights.[47]

Incidents and accidents

See also


  1. ^ "Contractions" (PDF). Retrieved 22 December 2020.
  2. ^ "Results presentation Q4/20" (PDF). Air Arabia.((cite web)): CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  3. ^ "Results Presentation Q4/20" (PDF). Air Arabia. Retrieved 5 February 2022.((cite web)): CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  4. ^ a b "Air Arabia Balance Sheet". GulfBase. Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  5. ^ "Directory: World Airlines". Flight International. 27 March 2007. p. 52.
  6. ^ a b "Middle East and Africa LCCs: huge growth opportunities, but challenges". CAPA - Centre for Aviation. Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  7. ^ a b "Air Arabia marks 15th anniversary with new brand identity". Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  8. ^ a b "Air Arabia achieves breakeven in its first year". Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  9. ^ "Directory: World Airlines". Flight International. 27 March 2007. p. 52.
  10. ^ "The A320 Family: 6,000 deliveries and counting". Airbus Industrie. 10 March 2014. Archived from the original on 10 June 2015. Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  11. ^ Arabian Business (10 February 2020). "Air Arabia reports record profit on new routes, improved efficiencies". Arabian Business. Retrieved 24 November 2020. ((cite web)): |last= has generic name (help)
  12. ^ "Air Arabia PSJC Bloomberg Profile". Bloomberg News. Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  13. ^ Kerr, Simeon (17 January 2019). "Air Arabia files legal case against Abraaj founder". The Financial Times. Retrieved 5 February 2022.
  14. ^ "Contact Info Archived 20 October 2012 at the Wayback Machine." Air Arabia. Retrieved on 21 June 2010. "Air Arabia (UAE) Air Arabia Head Quarters Sharjah Freight Center (Cargo),at Sharjah International Airport P.O. Box 132 Sharjah, United Arab Emirates" - Arabic Archived 18 September 2013 at the Wayback Machine: "العربية للطيران الامارات مركز الشارقة لنقل البضائع (الشحن) ،بالقرب من مطار الشارقة الدولي ص. ب. 132 الشارقة، الإمارات العربية المتحدة"
  15. ^ BEN (6 July 2020). "Air Arabia Abu Dhabi Launching Flights Next Week". One Mile at a Time. Retrieved 14 December 2020.
  16. ^ "Etihad Airways announces a new codeshare agreement with Air Arabia Abu Dhabi".
  17. ^ "Armenia's new national airline, formed in a joint venture with UAE's Air Arabia, named Fly Arna". Gulf Business. 2 September 2021.
  18. ^ "Air Arabia announced new Egyptian airline". Archived from the original on 27 September 2011. Retrieved 8 October 2011.[dead link]
  19. ^ a b "Air Arabia buys 49% stake in Jordan's Petra Airlines". Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  20. ^ "Jordan's aviation market is set for a major shake-up as Air Arabia Jordan enters". CAPA - Centre for Aviation. Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  21. ^ "20 airlines that have folded this year". The National. 7 April 2019. Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  22. ^ a b "Air Arabia Maroc is Morocco's third largest carrier with 6.7% of seat capacity; Casablanca remains #1; four new airports join network". 25 January 2017. Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  23. ^ "Air Arabia's Morocco base to open in 2009". CAPA - Centre for Aviation. Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  24. ^ a b "Yeti Airlines goes international, Orient Thai comes to Nepal". The Himalayan Times. 21 January 2008. Retrieved 24 November 2020.
  25. ^ "Air Arabia and Pakistani group to launch budget airline 'Fly Jinnah' - News _ Khaleej Times".
  26. ^ a b c d e "Air Arabia Investor Presentation" (PDF). Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  27. ^ a b c "FINANCIAL RESULTS Q4/FULL YEAR 2017" (PDF). Retrieved 2 November 2018.
  28. ^ "Air Arabia Investor Presentation 2007" (PDF). Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  29. ^ "Air Arabia Investor Presentation 2008" (PDF). Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  30. ^ "Air Arabia Investor Presentation 2009" (PDF). Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  31. ^ "Air Arabia Investor Presentation 2010" (PDF). Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  32. ^ "Air Arabia Investor Presentation 2011" (PDF). Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  33. ^ "Air Arabia Investor Presentation 2012" (PDF). Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  34. ^ "Air Arabia Investor Presentation 2013" (PDF). Retrieved 12 September 2020.
  35. ^ a b c "Results presentation FY 2019" (PDF). Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  36. ^ "Results Presentation Q4/FY 2020" (PDF). Retrieved 5 February 2022.
  37. ^ "Air Arabia posts $56m losses after virus impact despite Q4 uptick". Arabian Business. Retrieved 10 February 2021.
  38. ^ "Air Arabia sees 52% lower profits in Q1". Zawya. Retrieved 10 May 2021.
  39. ^ "Destinations - Air Arabia". Air Arabia. Retrieved 19 December 2013.
  40. ^ "Air Arabia adds Cairo as its 90th Worldwide Destination". IANS. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
  41. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Airbus Orders and Deliveries (XLS), monthly updated, accessed via "Orders & deliveries". Airbus. Airbus SAS. Retrieved 25 December 2022.
  42. ^ a b c "Air Arabia introduces new livery". Retrieved 2 November 2018.
  43. ^ a b c d e André Orban (18 November 2019). "Air Arabia orders 120 Airbus A320neo Family aircraft, including 20 A321XLRs". Retrieved 18 November 2019.
  44. ^ "Air Arabia Fleet". Air Arabia. Air Arabia. Retrieved 25 December 2022.
  45. ^ "Air Arabia leases six new Airbus A321neo LR aircraft to serve longer range routes". 14 November 2017. Retrieved 29 March 2018.
  46. ^ "Air Arabia Menu" (PDF). Retrieved 7 July 2021.
  47. ^ "Frequently asked Questions: Smoking and drinking". Retrieved 15 December 2020.
  48. ^ Benny, John (11 January 2022). "Final report on plane taking off from wrong runway in Sharjah released". The Gulf News. Retrieved 5 February 2022.

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