Our History

Over 50 Years of Aviation Excellence

The history of ASL Airlines Ireland dates back to 1972 when Air Bridge Carriers was formed at East Midlands Airport in the United Kingdom.

1972
Air Bridge Carrier (ABC) is formed
ASL Airlines Ireland’s history dates back to 1972 when Air Bridge Carriers was formed at East Midlands Airport in the United Kingdom.
1972
1972
1972
The Hunting Group acquires ABC
Our fleet was enhanced further with the introduction of several Boeing 727 and Lockheed Electra aircraft, the majority of which were placed on the Irish register.
1972
1972
1976
ABC welcomes its first Vickers Merchantman aircraft
This heralded an introduction to new markets, such as fresh fruit flights through the Gulf and the Middle East, as well as overnight newspaper flights.
1976
1976
1990
Formation of Elan Air with DHL using Merchantman aircraft
1990
1990
1992
Air Bridge Carriers becomes Hunting Cargo Airlines
The Hunting Group rebranded all its subsidiaries, and Air Bridge changed overnight to Hunting Cargo Airlines with a bold new corporate image.
1992
1992
1997
Irish Hub Established
All the airline’s operations are transferred to Ireland and the airline introduced its first Airbus A300-B4 to the fleet.
1997
1997
1998
Hunting Cargo Airlines is re-named Air Contractors
1998
1998
1998
Hunting Group sells its aviation-related companies
The airline was sold to a consortium comprising Compagnie Maritime Belge NV from Belgium (CMB) and Safair (Pty) Ltd based in South Africa, part of the Imperial Group.
1998
1998
2002
ATR Operations for FedEx in Europe Begins
2002
2002
2008
ASL Aviation Group is formed
All operators are coordinated under a single identity.
2008
2008
2009
Re-introduction of the A300B4 fleet for DHL operating 13 aircraft in the EMEA region
2009
2009
2010
Air Contractors Enters a New Era with Passenger Operations
Air Contractors begins passenger flights on a Boeing 737-700 aircraft in conjunction with group partner Europe Airpost.
2010
2010
2012
Air Contractors Operates for DHL
Air Contractors begins flying Boeing 737 freighter aircraft for DHL in Europe and Airbus A300-600 freight operations on behalf of Air Hong Kong with bases in Hong Kong and Penang.
2012
2012
2013
Air Contractors operates three Aer Lingus Boeing 757 aircraft
Air Contractors signed a contract with Aer Lingus to operate three Boeing 757 aircraft on transatlantic routes between Ireland and New York, Boston and Toronto.
2013
2013
2015
Air Contractors becomes ASL Airlines Ireland
ASL Aviation Group’s European airlines are rebranded as ASL Airlines, with Air Contractors becoming ASL Airlines Ireland, Europe Airpost becoming ASL Airlines France and Farnair Switzerland, and Farnair Hungary becoming ASL Airlines Switzerland and ASL Airlines Hungary, respectively.
2015
2015
2017
ASL Aviation Group renamed ASL Aviation Holdings
2017
2017
2017
ASL Aviation Holdings reached a revenue milestone of $1 billion for the first time
2017
2017
2017
A330-300F Operations Begin
A330-300F operations began in late 2017 with the start of our wet lease contract with Air Hong Kong based in Hong Kong
2017
2017
2019
ASL Aviation Holdings Acquired By Star Capital Partnership LLC
2019
2019
2021
ASL’s newest cargo airline, ASL Airlines United Kingdom, was launched.
ASL UK will be closely aligned with ASL Airlines Ireland with common SOPs and shared support services.
2021
2021
2023
ASLI subsidiary ASL Future Flight receives its commercial drone licence
ASL Airlines Ireland subsidiary, ASL Future Flight, has been awarded a Light UAS Aircraft Systems Operator Certificate (LUC) by the Irish Aviation Authority.
2023
2023