Discover the Remarkable History of Air Vanuatu: From the Early Days of Independence to Present Day Challenges

The history of Air Vanuatu dates back to 1970, when the island nation of Vanuatu declared its independence from both France and the United Kingdom. The newly established government decided that a national airline should be created in order to better connect the islands and people of Vanuatu with the rest of the world. This idea was realized in 1981 when Air Vanuatu was established.

Since its inception, Air Vanuatu has been connecting the people of Vanuatu to the rest of the world. The airline’s original fleet consisted of just two aircraft, a de Havilland Heron and a Piper Chieftain. Over the years, the airline has expanded and modernized its fleet, which now consists of eleven aircraft, including Airbus A320, Boeing 737-800, and ATR 42-500 aircraft.

The airline has come a long way since its humble beginnings. Air Vanuatu has achieved several milestones over the years, including its first international flight in 1982 and its first intercontinental flight in 1993. In 1995, Air Vanuatu launched its first frequent flyer program, Air Vanuatu Rewards, which allowed passengers to earn points when they fly with the airline. In 2000, the airline launched its website and began offering online flight bookings.

In 2010, Air Vanuatu made headlines when it became the first airline to offer direct flights from Australia to Vanuatu. This move was significant, as it opened up the possibility for increased tourism to the islands, which has been a boon for the local economy. In 2013, Air Vanuatu began offering direct flights to New Zealand, further increasing the airline’s presence in the region.

Sadly, Air Vanuatu has also been involved in a few incidents over the years. In 1992, an Air Vanuatu flight traveling from Port Vila to Tanna was forced to make an emergency landing due to a fuel leak. In 2003, another Air Vanuatu flight was involved in an accident on the runway, resulting in the deaths of two passengers. In 2017, the airline was the subject of a federal investigation after a flight from Port Vila to Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, was diverted due to a bomb threat.

The history of Air Vanuatu is an interesting one, and the airline has come a long way since its inception in 1981. From its original two-aircraft fleet to its current 11-aircraft fleet, Air Vanuatu has grown significantly over the years and has become an important part of the airline industry in the region. The airline has achieved several important milestones, and it has also been involved in a few incidents over the years. But despite these challenges, Air Vanuatu continues to serve the people of Vanuatu and provide them with reliable and safe air travel.