Air Malta


Has Operated from Apr 1974 to Present

Country of Origin – Malta

Founders/Directors – The Maltese Government

Air Malta initially started services as far back as 1947, although this particular airline came about as the result of a merger of three smaller airlines which were at the time privately owned businesses. However in 1973, the Maltese Government looked into setting up an airline for this tiny island nation and as such, the privately owned Air Malta Ltd was bought out with the owners all receiving shares in the new entity. For the first year, British European Airways were tasked with operating services on behalf of this company, this continuing until April 1974 when the airline finally procured its first equipment in the form of Boeing 720-040 AP-AMG which was leased from Pakistan International Airways, a partner company that had been brought in to help Air Malta get itself off of the ground.

Over the next few years yet more B720s and some B707s would join the fleet and in the early ’80s, the first of Air Malta’s B737s was delivered. It was these latter aircraft that would soon become a regular sight at Southend with Burstin Holidays offering trips to the Maltese island from May 16th 1983 onwards. Flights departed SEN on Monday and would fly direct if loads were reasonably light, otherwise the aircraft would make a stop over at either Gatwick or Ostend or in a number of rare instances, in Italy for fuel. These operations would continue through to 1991 and were only discontinued when Burstin itself collapsed. Otherwise, a small number of other Air Malta aircraft later visited SEN with the odd B707, B727 and further B737 types passing through for painting or maintenance. However as of May 2018, Air Malta has once again started operating to and from Southend.


Air Malta fleet from 1983 to 1991

(Only those aircraft that were likely to have been seen at SEN are listed)

Boeing 737-200

PH-TVP – 3/81 to 1/84

Leased from Transavia

9H-ABA* – 11/83 to 9/84

Sold to Air New Zealand as ZK-NAF

9H-ABB* – 3/83 to 11/94

Sold to Air New Zealand as ZK-NAH

9H-ABC – 3/83 to 12/94

Sold to Air New Zealand as ZK-NAD

9H-ABE* – 9/87 to 2/99

Sold to Celsius Amtec as N341CA

9H-ABF – 7/87 to 2/99

Sold to Celsius Amtec as N342CA

9H-ABG* – 3/88 to 3/95

Sold to Aloha Airlines as N810AL

Boeing 727-200

G-BPNS* – 3/90 to 10/90

Leased from Dan-Air


Do you have any other, interesting snippets of information about this airline’s SEN history or indeed, any pictures or paraphernalia that you would like to share? If so, then please contact us on

Many thanks from the SAAD Admin Team.