As Turkish Airlines, we continue to enhance our value and be the most dependable company for our customers in the skies. The journey that we began in 1933, with just five aircraft, is still moving forward, but now with 371 aircraft and over 320 destinations.
Starting on May 20, 1933 with five planes and fewer than 30 employees, our journey continues today as the airline flying to the most countries in the world – celebrating our 87th year.
Our 87-year success story is marked by the strength we have gained through challenges and difficult times.
- Back in 1933, the Turkish Airlines adventure began; an endeavor to unite people, cultures, continents, countries and cities whilst providing new, inspiring travel experiences for all. On the 20th of May 1933, we took to the skies as State Airlines Administration. Leading the way, Turkey’s first aviator and chief executive, Fesan Evrensev, set out with a mere 30 employees and 5 aircraft.
- In 1947, proudly flying the Turkish national flag, we conducted our first overseas flight, from Istanbul to Athens. Making headway in 1951, our fleet increased to 33 aircraft and we began to fly to new destinations: Nicosia, Beirut and Cairo.
- In 1955, taking the name of Turkish Airlines, we signed a document listing our extraordinary achievements. Furthermore, our name gained its ranks alongside the members of IATA, International Air Transport Association.
The construction of Istanbul Yeşilköy Airport wrapped up in 1953 and opened to international air traffic. In 1985, it became Atatürk Airport, a global meeting point; a hub to thousands of memorable moments.
- In 1958, 5 Viscount 794 aircraft joined our fleet; After switching from piston engines to jet-powered aircraft, a new era dawned in our aviation history.
- In 1959, Mesut Manioğlu designed our signature emblem, the wild goose, a fitting image as geese are known to fly up to an altitude of 9,000.
In 1961, pilot captains Zihni Barın and Nurettin made another first in Turkish Airlines history by crossing the Atlantic Ocean on a F-27 aircraft on a 30-hour flight from the USA to Istanbul.
Due to the devoted efforts and the dedication of our workers, our capital increased from 200 million in 1972 to 400 million, an astounding 100% increase.
- In 1973, the first McDonnell Douglas DC-10 European aircraft was added to our fleet. A journey that began 40 years ago with 24 personnel experienced an employee network growth of 4,437.
The firm’s belief in broadening our horizons ensured achievements that gave way to a thriving progression of our success story in the 80’s. Since 1983, a fruitful 50 years, we have been bridging continents across the globe, delivering 2,5 million passengers. From Europe, the Middle East and the Far East, we finally launched flights to America, with more than 5,000 employees on 4 continents serving our world-leading brand.
- In 1998, the Turkish Airlines website was launched. In 2001, we put our call center into service. Purchasing tickets became a lot easier in 2003 with the application of e-tickets and check-in. Turkish Airlines corporate website launched with a new interface on turkishairlines.com.