Corsair International

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Corsair International
Corsair International logo.png
IATA ICAO Callsign
Founded17 May 1981;40 years ago (1981-05-17) (as Corse Air International)
Operating bases Paris-Orly
Frequent-flyer program Club Corsair
Fleet size8
Destinations 12
Parent company Consortium of West Indian Investors
Headquarters Rungis, France
Key peoplePascal de Izaguirre
Revenue Increase2.svg €470,582,300 (2018) [1]

Corsair International, legally Corsair S.A., and previously Corsairfly, is a French charter 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 leisure destinations in the French overseas territories, Africa, and North America, as well as charter flights to other destinations. [5]



Early years

A former Corsair Boeing 747-300 landing at Princess Juliana International Airport in 2007 Corsair Boeing 747-300 at SXM Bidini.jpg
A former Corsair Boeing 747-300 landing at Princess Juliana International Airport in 2007
A former Boeing 747-400 wearing the old Corsairfly livery on approach to Suvarnabhumi Airport in 2008 Corsairfly Boeing 747-400 Prasertwit-1.jpg
A former Boeing 747-400 wearing the old Corsairfly livery on approach to Suvarnabhumi Airport in 2008

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". In 1991, the airline obtained worldwide traffic rights. 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

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 year to 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 A330-900s 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 October 2019, Corsair ended its codeshare agreement with Air Caraïbes. [17] [18]

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. [19] The then mixed fleet would have been transitioned to an all-A330 fleet, expected to comprise 13 aircraft by 2023. [20]


• Montréal [YUL] • Pointe à Pitre [PTP] • Fort de France [FDF] • Abidjan [ABJ] • Dzaoudzi [DZA] • St-Denis de la Réunion [RUN] • Ile Maurice [MRU]


Current fleet

A Corsair International Airbus A330-200 at Paris-Orly Airport in 2012 F-HCAT A330 Corse Air new cs (8009757005).jpg
A Corsair International Airbus A330-200 at Paris-Orly Airport in 2012
A Corsair International Airbus A330-300 at Paris-Orly Airport in 2018 F-HSKY - Airbus A330-343 - Corsair (44204799361).jpg
A Corsair International Airbus A330-300 at Paris-Orly Airport in 2018

As of May 2021, Corsair International operates an all-Airbus A330 fleet: [21] [22]

Corsair International fleet
Airbus A330-200 1121254224302
Airbus A330-300 4181236232298
Airbus A330-900 32 [20] [23] 202133278352 [24] Deliveries between 2021 and 2022.

Former fleet

While the company started in business as an operator of short- and medium range aircraft such as the Sud Aviation Caravelle and various versions of the Boeing 737, beginning in the 1990s, it progressively shifted its operations to long-range only. As a long-range airline, Corsair has operated the following jet aircraft types, with short-term leases being excluded: [25]

Corsair International former fleet
Airbus A300B4 119951995Leased from Premiair
Airbus A310-300 120042005Leased from Islandsflug
Airbus A340-300 120182018Leased from Hi Fly Malta
Boeing 737-200 219952000
Boeing 737-300 319922004
Boeing 737-400 319922006
Boeing 747-100 519921998
Boeing 747-200B 519922005
Boeing 747-300 619972007
Boeing 747-400 620052020
Boeing 747SP 119962002
McDonnell Douglas DC-10-30 219961997Leased from ChallengAir

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  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. 1 2 "Directory: World Airlines". Flight International . 2007-04-03. p. 69.
  5. "Contenu de la balise "Title"" . Retrieved 10 July 2015.
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  9. "" . 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]. 18 October 2018.
  14. "Corsair International - Book Flights and Save". Retrieved 15 April 2019.
  15. Clark, Oliver (19 March 2019). "Corsair to lease A330neos and go all-Airbus under new owner Intro". Retrieved 15 April 2019.
  16. Clark, Oliver (18 March 2019). "TUI confirms sale of majority stake in Corsair to Intro". Retrieved 15 April 2019.
  17. "Partenariat aérien" [Airline partnership]. Air Caraïbes (in French). Archived from the original on 14 September 2020. Retrieved 14 September 2020.
  18. Fabi, Serge (27 July 2019). "Air Caraïbes et Corsair arrêtent leur partage de codes sur les Antilles" [Air Caraïbes and Corsair end their codesharing to the Antilles] (in French). Retrieved 14 September 2020.
  20. 1 2 Clark, Oliver (19 March 2019). "Corsair to lease A330neos and go all-Airbus under new owner Intro".
  21. "Fleet". Corsair. Retrieved 19 April 2021.
  22. "Corsair Fleet Details and History". Retrieved May 12, 2021.
  23. "France's Corsair International accelerates fleet renewal". ch-aviation . 23 September 2019.
  24. Bodell, Luke (31 March 2021). "Corsair Takes Delivery Of Its First Airbus A330neo". Simple Flying.
  25., photos of Corsair aircraft

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