Kish Airlines is an airline based in Tehran, Iran. It operates international, domestic and charter services as a scheduled carrier. Its main base is Mehrabad International Airport, Tehran.
The airline was established on December 16, 1989 and started operations in 1989. It is owned by Kish Free Zone Organisation, Kish Investment and Development and Kish Development and Servicing.
To start its passenger operations, after receiving temporary operations permission, the airline leased 2 aircraft (three Tupolev Tu-154 and four McDonnell Douglas MD-82/MD-83) from Bulgaria Airlines on a wet lease basis. Kish Air received its air operator certificate (AOC) in 1990 after demonstrating its competence to the Civil Aviation authorities, during its first year of operations, thus becoming the first private company to receive its AOC from Civil Aviation of Iran. At this time the company began wet leasing three Tupolev Tu-154Ms from Russian leasing companies, returning the previously leased Bulgarian aircraft. The company also wet leased two Yakovlev Yak-42D aircraft from Russia.
Towards the end of 1992 the company was at the verge of bankruptcy, and most of the key managers were replaced by a new team, most of whom are still running the company successfully today. In 1999 Kish Air having enough financial strength, decided to replace its wet leased fleet with dry leased and purchased aircraft, and within a year was able to operate 2 dry leased and two purchased Tupolev Tu-154 aircraft, and hire and train the required air crew and maintenance personnel. At present Kish Air is also operating a fleet of medium range MD-80 series aircraft and short range Fokker 100 on its domestic and international routes.
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