Air Mauritius was incorporated in June 1967 as a handling agent and started operations in August 1972 with a Piper Navajo leased from Air Madagascar on a flight between Mauritius and Rodrigues Island.
Five years later, Air Mauritius used a wet leased Boeing 707 to start international operations.
During the 1970s and 1980s, Air Mauritius operated Boeing 707s and Boeing 747s, the last ones being replaced by Airbus A340s from 1994.
Boeing 767s were introduced in 1988, while ATR 42 aircraft had started its service with Air Mauritius one year earlier.
In 1988, one Air Mauritius Boeing 767-200ER set a new distance record for commercial twin jets with a flight from Halifax, Nova Scotia, to Mauritius. The duration of the flight was 16 hours and 27 minutes, during which the plane covered no less than 8,727 statute miles (14,042 km)!
In December, 2006, Air Mauritius received the last Airbus A340-300 ever built and launched its regular service to London Heathrow and Hong Kong.
Air Mauritius is one of the few airlines offering combined airplane and helicopter services.
In late 2007, the Boeing 767-200ER planes were replaced by two Airbus A330-200s.
In October 2009, Air Mauritius took delivery of a new Airbus 330-200, which together with the first A330-200, are being mainly deployed on medium haul routes such as India, Asia, and Australia.
In November 2009, for the third year running, Air Mauritius won the 16th World Travel Awards (WTA) in the category Indian Ocean’s Leading Airline. The other airlines nominated in this category were Air Austral, Air France, Air Madagascar, Air Seychelles and South African Airways.
In July 2010, Air Mauritius reintroduced online operations to Sydney, the 24th point in the Air Mauritius online network.
In December 2010, Air Mauritius replaced an 11-year old ATR 72–500 aircraft with a new one equipped with enhanced engines with improved take-off performance on short runways and particularly under adverse conditions. This aircraft has been welcomed by customers traveling on the Reunion and Rodrigues routes.
In July 2011, paving the way for closer ties between China and Mauritius, Air Mauritius announced a new route to Shanghai, the 25th destination in the airline’s network and the 4th in East Asia. The flight operates via Kuala Lumpur and offers connections to/from Antananarivo, Reunion, and South Africa.
In 2011, Air Mauritius won, for the 7th year in a row, the “2011 Indian Ocean Leading Airline Prize”.
In February 2012, after Air Mauritius reported losses of EUR 29.2 million for the financial year 2011/2012, a 7 Step plan was approved and implemented. Seeks to return to profitability by the 2013/2014 financial year, the first step concerned the concentration of the network. Thus, Air Mauritius suspended services to Milan, Sydney, and Melbourne at the end of May, Frankfurt and Geneva at the end of August, and Durban at the end of October. These markets continued to be served via hubs in Paris, Perth and Johannesburg.
In January 2013, Air Mauritius started to operate two direct weekly flights to Shanghai operated by the Airbus A340 aircraft. Both flights offer connections to and from Madagascar, Reunion, and South Africa.
On July 9, 2014, Air Mauritius was officially awarded the coveted 4-Star status by Skytrax. There are only a small number of airlines in the 4-Star category, among which Air France, British Airways, Emirates, and Etihad. This was a big achievement for Air Mauritius considering that no more than two years before the national airline of Mauritius was struggling with financial losses and poor customer service ratings.
In July 2014, Air Mauritius placed an order for six A350-900. Air Mauritius has selected the long-range, wide-body planes to replace its aging fleet of six A340-300s used on long-haul flights to Europe and Asia. The first 2 A350-900 planes will be delivered in 2017 through operating leases from AerCap Holdings and the remaining four will be purchased from Airbus, with 2 aircraft to be delivered in 2019 and the remaining 2 in 2020.
In the beginning of 2015, Air Mauritius operated 5 charter flights to Chengdu, capital of Southwest China’s Sichuan province, thus confirming the airline’s strategy to further develop the Chinese market which is considered as the fastest growing in the world. Chengdu is the fourth Chinese city to have a direct flight to Mauritius, after Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong. As the first air route from Western China, the direct flight saves at least 6 hours compared to before when passengers traveling to Mauritius from western China had to transfer in Hong Kong or Abu Dhabi.
In March 2016, Air Mauritius inaugurated the ‘Air Corridor’ with the launch of its first direct flight to Singapore, previously served via Kuala Lumpur. The ‘Air Corridor’, an initiative of the Mauritian Government, aims at improving air connectivity between Mauritius and Singapore in order to stimulate the growth of passenger and cargo traffic between Africa and Asia through these two hubs.
In October-November 2017, Air Mauritius took delivery of two A350 900 XWB aircraft, becoming the first A350 operator based in the Indian Ocean. The A350 900 XWB has a very comfortable two-class configuration with a total of 326 seats, 298 in Economy Class and 28 in Business Class, and will connect Mauritius with Europe, Africa, and Asia.
In March 2018, Air Mauritius started twice-weekly operations to Amsterdam, as part of its plan to develop a second hub in Europe. The flights are operated in collaboration with KLM and Air France.
For 2018, Mauritius Airlines’ plans include the revamp of the cabin interiors, leading to alignment across the fleet, and the lease of two Airbus A330-900neo aircraft to replace two Airbus A340-300E aircraft from September-October 2018.
No fatal incidents involving Air Mauritius aircraft have been recorded so far.