SriLankan Airlines

SriLankan Airlines

airline=SriLankan Airlines

callsign=SRI LANKAN
founded=July 1979| hubs=Bandaranaike International Airport
lounge=Serendib Lounge
company_slogan=You're Our World
headquarters= Level 22, East Tower,
World Trade Centre,
Echelon Square,
Colombo 1,
Sri Lanka
key_people= Manoj Gunawardena (CEO)

SriLankan Airlines Limited (previously known as Air Lanka) is the national airline of Sri Lanka. It operates an Airbus fleet of 14 aircraft to destinations in Asia, Europe and the Middle East. SriLankan's hub is located at the Bandaranaike International Airport (CMB) in Colombo. The airlines trademark phrase is 'You're Our World', and the company's logo features a stylized peacock.

SriLankan is not part of an airline alliance. It had a partnership that expired on 31 March 2008 [ Management contract terminated] January 2008, OAG, News briefing] with Emirates Airline (which has a stake of 43.6% in SriLankan), a codeshare agreement with other airlinesFact|date=January 2008


Air Lanka was set up by the Sri Lankan Government in July 1979 following the closure of Air Ceylon in 1978. It initially operated two Boeing 707s which were leased from Singapore Airlines. During the 1980s, the airline increased the number of destinations it serviced and made additions to its fleet. In 1990 Air Lanka served 26 destinations. In December 1992 the airline purchased its first Airbus A320.

Air Lanka, which was state owned, was part-privatized to the Dubai based Emirates Group in 1998 when Emirates and the Sri Lankan Government signed an agreement for a ten year strategic partnership. This agreement would include exclusive rights for all ground handling and airline catering at Bandaranaike International Airport for a ten year period. Emirates bought a 40% stake worth US$70 million (which it later increased to 43.6%) in Air Lanka, and sought to refurbish the airline's image and fleet. The Government retained the majority of the stake in the airline but gave full control to Emirates for investments and management decisions. In 1998, the Air Lanka brand was retired and SriLankan airlines was born.

SriLankan acquired six Airbus A330-200s to complement its fleet of A340-300 and A320-200 aircraft. The A330-200s joined the airline between October 1999 and July 2000. The company’s fourth A340-300 arrived at Colombo painted in the airline’s new corporate livery. SriLankan also upgraded its existing A340 fleet into a two-class configuration (business and economy) whilst overhauling the interior to reflect the new corporate image.

SriLankan has suffered from environmental problems and acts of terrorism. These have included the SARS outbreak, the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake, a civil war within Sri Lanka and a terrorist attack which destroyed four aircraft and damaged two, writing off half of its fleet. SriLankan then took the decision to recreate Colombo as a new hub for flights to Asia. An example of this is the expansion into regional markets such as India. It is now the largest foreign carrier into India with 100 flights a week to 11 destinations.

Whilst continuing expansion in the region, SriLankan also conducts flights to Jeddah, its third destination in Saudi Arabia after Riyadh and Dammam. Jeddah was the airline's 51st destination in 28 countries and increased to nine the number of destinations in the Middle East.

As part of its strategy it has also developed nonstop flights from Malé (the Maldives) to London, Paris and Tokyo.

In 2008 Sri Lanka government had notified the Emirates that they will not renew the management contract [ [ Emirates walking away from SriLankan] Nicholas Ionides, 2008-01-22, Flight International] which then expired on March 31, 2008.

The flight attendant's uniform has remained unchanged since its inauguration with Air Lanka. The stewardesses' uniform is a Kandyan-style sari in green with a peacock feather print, while the stewards' uniform is a red/maroon jacket, white shirt and black trousers.

Sri Lankan 'Monara'

SriLankan Airlines corporate logo features the peacock bird ('Monara' in Sinhala) from the mythical Dandumonara Yanthra (flying machine similar to a peacock) built according to Sinhalese folklore by the mythical king Ravana.

There was much animosity to the name change and new logo, in Sri Lanka and from Sri Lankan expatriates. 'Air Lanka' had proved to be a loved name amongst a large community who did not want it to change. Due to folklore and superstition, some Sri Lankan's believe that the new Sri Lankan logo, which shows the peacock flying "away" from the aircraft, would bring misfortune to the airline, as opposed to the old logo, which showed the peacock facing the direction of the aircraft in flight.


SriLankan currently serves to 28 destinations (51 thorough codeshare) to 15 countries (28 countries through codeshare). ["Sri Lankan Airlines", [ Route Map] ]



As of June 2007 SriLankan Airlines has an all Airbus fleet. Emirates Airline had stated that it planned to double SriLankan's fleet in the proceeding five years if the management contract was extended: [ [ SriLankan Airlines Fleet Information] ]


The SriLankan Cargo Fleet consists of the following aircraft as of November 2006: [ [ SriLankan Cargo Fleet Information] ]

* 2 Antonov An-12

The SriLankan cargo fleet consists of two all cargo Antonov An-12s. In addition SriLankan carries cargo in the belly hold of its passenger fleet. [ [ SriLankan Cargo] ]

SriLankan's average fleet age is 12.1 years as of April 2008. [ [ Airline fleet age at] ]


On board, SriLankan provides an individual video player that includes 18 movies and 22 radio channels (economy class) and over 30 movie titles in different languages (business class). Both classes are given the option of a "Satcom" satellite phone. Satcom also gives the option of calling anyone in another seat free of charge. SriLankan also gives their passengers the opportunity to reserve their meals for travelers who have particular dietary requirements due to medical or religious reasons. Business Class passengers have the option of pre-ordering any of the special meals available.


SriLankan Catering, although a 100% owned subsidiary of SriLankan Airlines, is a standalone operation responsible for its own economic infrastructure, management and profitability. Under the guidance of its chief executive officer, the company’s prime responsibility is the preparation of in-flight meals for SriLankan Airlines. It also caters for a number of foreign airlines, among which are Gulf Air, Cathay Pacific, Singapore Airlines and Emirates. SriLankan Catering can produce 15,000 meals each day. [ [ SriLankan Food and Beverage] ]


New movies from Hollywood, old classics and some films from India are available on SriLankan Airlines. There are also comedies, dramas, arts, sports and children's TV. The drama and arts section contain stories of current interest, including features on celebrities. There are channels for sport that include highlights of tournaments and that discuss sporting moments. The "Quest" channel provides exploration of the world and documentaries about space and the sea.

CTV is SriLankan's channel for children. It contains programmes such as comedies and cartoons. SriLankan also has 22 radio channels to provide music from around the world. SriLankan's radio channels cover the European charts, Golden Era, Classical and Jazz and popular music selections from Sri Lanka, Arabia, India and Japan. 16 new games have been added, including puzzles, playing cards and classic board games. [ [ SriLankan Entertainment] ]


FlySmiLes is the new frequent flyer programme of SriLankan Airlines. It ceased to be a part of Emirates' Skywards frequent flyer programme when the partnership between the two airlines was terminated on 31 March 2008. [ [ FlySmiLes] ]

Incidents & Accidents

On 3 May 1986, a bomb planted by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam exploded on board Flight UL512 prior to takeoff at Colombo's Bandaranaike International Airport. The bomb, which had been timed to explode inflight, went off while the aircraft, a Lockheed L-1011 Tristar (London Gatwick - Zurich - Dubai - Colombo - Maldives), was on the ground killing 14 of 128 passengers. Officials believe the bomb may have been concealed in crates of meat and vegetables being freighted to the Republic of Maldives. Other reports believe that the bomb was hidden in the aircraft's 'Fly Away Kit'.

On 24 July 2001, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam launched a suicide attack at Bandaranaike International Airport damaging or destroying 26 aircraft. Four aircraft were written off which included an Airbus A340-300 destroyed by an explosive charge and an Airbus A330-200 destroyed by a rocket fired from the control tower. In addition, an A320-200 and an A340-300 were damaged in the assault. In total six Sri Lanka Air Force people, one commando and eight members of the LTTE were killed. [cite web| year = 2001| url =| title = Intelligence failures exposed by Tamil Tiger airport attack| publisher = Jane's Intelligence Review| accessdate = 2008-04-09]


In March 2003 the Skytrax Research Agency’s worldwide passenger survey voted SriLankan, for the third consecutive year, Best Airline of the Year for Central Asia. In that same year Travel Trade Gazette (Asia) voted SriLankan Best Airline in South Asia. In 2001 the UK’s Wanderlust magazine placed SriLankan eighth in its Top Major Airlines travel award category.


*Sri Lankan Cargo
*Sri Lankan Catering
*Sri Lankan Engineering
*Sri Lankan Holidays [ [ SriLankan Holidays] ]
*Sri Lankan Ground Handling [ [ SriLankan Ground Handling] ]


External links

* [ Official website]

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