Air Malta: Small Airline, Big Ambitions

Air Malta has built up an extensive network and provides a lifeline to the island nation. Despite a small fleet and a limited home market, the Maltese flag carrier was outlining ambitious plans just as it was facing new competition and now the impact of coronavirus, as Lee Cross explains.

Surviving 46 years in the traditionally cutthroat aviation industry is no mean feat, especially when you are based on a small Mediterranean island with a population of just over 460,000, flying a fleet of only ten aircraft. But Air Malta has done just that, carrying over 55m passengers since its inception.

On June 5, 2018 Air Malta received its first Airbus A320neo.

Capt Clifford Chetcuti, CEO of Air Malta, told Aviation News in January: “Air connectivity is vital for an island state like Malta, especially for the growth and sustainability of the country’s economy, assisting tourism and providing businesses with a wide distribution network. We off er much-needed connectivity for the Maltese people to mainland Europe and North Africa and through our 14 codeshare partners to the rest of the world. Air Malta is the backbone of the country.”

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