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RB Today & Our History

Royal Brunei Airlines today and our History

Royal Brunei Airlines, the country’s flag carrier, was established on 18 November 1974 as an independent corporation wholly owned by the government of Brunei Darussalam. The maiden flight took off from Bandar Seri Begawan to Singapore on 14th May, 1975. The Company has grown in leaps and bounds since then, winning awards and accolades and achieved a four star airline ranking in 2018.

We connect Brunei Darussalam to the world from our hub in Bandar Seri Begawan and have been serving the Nation for over 44 years. We are a full service carrier offering year around low fares with free meals, baggage and entertainment as part of our offer.

Safety is our first priority and never compromised. Our people, our community and our planet matters to us.

Royal Brunei Airlines is constantly transforming to make sure we are well positioned for the future. The growth in middle class population and rising disposable incomes has opened up new opportunities for us and our tourism industry. Our route network has grown from three routes to twenty routes (December 2018) and the plan is to grow this to twenty five during calendar year 2019.

Growth Through the Decades

2018 was a year of significant transformations and achievements as we embarked on the development of our products, services, network and infrastructure and equally importantly, our people.

As part of our five year business plan, we have achieved a complete turnover of our fleet to new aircraft comprised of B787 Dreamliner and A320neo/ceo. The average aircraft age is two years, one of youngest fleet in the world and testament of our commitment to our guests of the latest cabin product, comfort and operational reliability. The new fleet burns less fuel, has smaller carbon footprint and is environmentally friendlier.

Royal Brunei currently operates a fleet of fourteen aircraft comprising of five Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner aircraft together with seven Airbus A320neo aircraft and two Airbus A320ceo. We have the ability to scale up as required and have developed a more extensive network through codeshare and interline arrangements with our Partner Airlines.

In 2018, RB received the APEX Official Airline Ratings™ Four-Star Award and as winners of TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice Economy Class – Asia and Travellers’ Choice Regional Airlines – Asia. In the recent Skytrax airline rating RB moved up fourteen places to be at number 78 (from 92) in the top 100 airlines in the world. Our goal is to be a four star, top 50 airline in the world.

2019

2019

24 July 2019

  • RB received 4-Star Airline quality rating certification from SKYTRAX, the international airport transport rating organization.

10 July 2019

  • RB celebrated the return to the Australian city of Brisbane to our route network
  • RB introduced RB Link to connect neighbouring cities in the Borneo Island, with flights operated by Malindo Air

18 June 2019

  • RB is announced at number 66 in the Skytrax’s esteemed annual ranking of Top 100 Airlines in the World, advancing 12 positions from the previous year

16 April 2019

  • Launch of scheduled charter services to Changsha, China

2 April 2019

  • TripAdvisor announced that RB was recognized as a winner in the 2019 TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice™ awards for Travellers’ Choice Regional Airlines- Asia for the second consecutive year

1 April 2019

  • RB expands its route network to Osaka and Nagoya with codeshare partner, China Airlines

15 March 2019

  • RB celebrates the first inaugural flight to Tokyo Narita, Japan

14 March 2019

  • RB inked a Special Prorate Agreement deal with British Airways, which extends Royal Brunei’s network from 11 to 23 airports in the region

10 January 2019

  • RB embarked on another significant milestone with the launching of its new corporate Head Office at the expanded and newly refurbished RB Campus in conjunction with the opening of RB’s Sky Café

2018

28 December 2018

  • RB reconnects with Kuching, Malaysia

3 December 2018

  • RB launched direct flights to Taipei

22 November 2018

  • First flight to Haikou, China

15 November 2018

  • RB and Sarawak Tourism Board signed a Memorandum of Agreement to collaborate and stimulate the inflow of visitors to Brunei and Kuching

31 October 2018

  • The upgraded website with better user experience and richer content is launched

28 October 2018

  • First nonstop flight between Brunei and London Heathrow, first time the two nations are connected by a direct air link.

9 October 2018

  • RB honoured with a 4-star official airline ratings from APEX

24 September 2018

  • New destination marketing campaign launched in key international markets

22 September 2018

  • The official launch of the A320neo fleet, including a special livery aircraft to showcase Brunei to the world
  • Destination (Brunei) Marketing Campaign is launched by the Minister of Primary Resources and Tourism, developed and funded by RB
  • RB announced that it will commence direct flights to Tokyo from 15 March 2019

25 May 2018

  • RB welcomes the airlines’ 1st Delivery of A320neo registered as V8-RBA from Toulouse, France

19 April 2018

  • RB introduces the Royal Brunei Mobile App

12 April 2018

  • 12 April: TripAdvisor announced that RB was recognized as a winner in the 2018 TripAdvisor Travellers’ Choice™ awards for Travellers’ Choice Economy Class – Asia and Travellers’ Choice Regional Airlines- Asia

22 March 2018

  • International Forest of Friendship (IFF) honored RB’s Female Captain Sharifah Czarena Suriany Syed Hasmim as a 2018 inductee for IFF

6 February 2018

  • RB announced that LEAP-1A engines by CFM International’s will power RB’s A320neos

2 January 2018

  • Launch of scheduled services to Nanning, China
  • The new Corporate Head Office at Simpur Building, RB Campus was opened and corporate staff relocated to this new custom designed facility.

2017

21 December 2017

  • RB inks codeshare agreement with Myanmar Airways International to provide a better holiday options for both guests

6 December 2017

  • A Refreshed and upgraded Sky lounge was launched and the introduction of the new Business Class Lounge

26 November 2017

  • Launch of scheduled services to Seoul, South Korea

20 October 2017

  • RB completed the upgrade of RB Plaza, Bandar Seri Begawan with a refresh design that incorporates traditional heritage element into the building exterior

5 October 2017

  • The nation celebrated His Majesty 50 year’s accession to the throne. RB made a special aircraft livery on its A320 CEO to commemorate this occasion and more than 200 staff was involved in the procession.

3 October 2017

  • Launch of charter services to Hangzhou, China

27 September 2017

  • RB introduces Royal Brunei Holidays site a 24/7 online dynamic planning and bundling of holiday products

16 August 2017

  • RB signed codeshare agreements with Philippine Airlines

9 August 2017

  • RB signs contract to deploy OpenAirlines’ fuel efficiency solution – Sky Breathe

5 & 12 July 2017

  • RB enhanced codeshare agreements with Malaysia Airlines and Turkish Airlines for a better holiday options for RB’s guests

8 April 2017

  • RB introduced Mobile boarding pass

13 February 2017

  • RB introduced Fly-Rail-Coach product allowing guests to book UK ground travel and international travel with RB in one seamless booking

2016

15 December 2016

  • RB Upgrades was introduced to level up our guests travel experience to experience our Business Class hospitality

14 December 2016

  • Daily codeshare flight to Tokyo via Hong Kong with Hong Kong Airlines was launched

28 October 2016

  • RB introduces direct charter flights to South Korea

3 October 2016

  • RB signs 10-year component support contract with Lufthansa Technik

26 August 2016

  • Hong Kong Airlines signed codeshare agreements with RB

10 August 2016

  • RB was announced top 10 in Skytrax’s Most Loved Airlines

12 July 2016

  • RB signed codeshare with China Eastern Airlines

20 June 2016

  • RB introduces App-iness as a new in-flight option for passengers on its Airbus A320 CEO aircraft

17 June 2016

  • Royal Skies introduces Awards Shopper

5 April 2016

  • 5 April: RB Miri Sarawak Office rebranded office and uniform

1 April 2016

  • RB rebranded its fare types and introduced betterfly fares

17 March 2016

  • Mr Karam Chand was appointed to be the Chief Executive Officer for Royal Brunei Airlines after Mr Dermot Mannion ended his 5 year term in the executive office

23 February 2016

  • Royal Brunei Airlines made headlines internationally with our first female pilot trio in the flight deck flying from Bandar Seri Begawan to Jeddah. The flight was led by Captain Czarena along with SFOs Sariana and Dk Nadiah

19 February 2016

  • RB and Turkish Airlines sign codeshare agreement

2010s

9 November 2015

  • RB was declared winner of the Travel Media Innovative Campaign and Content of the Year Award at the inaugural Travel Media Awards held at the St Pancras Renaissance Hotel, London

15 June 2015

  • RB announced major enhancements to the airline’s online booking experience, being the first airline in Asia Pacific to implement the new version of Amadeus e-Retail platform

30 April 2015

  • RB launched rebranded Customer Service Centre and Elite lounge, as well as heritage inspired uniforms for Customer Service Centre and Airport Ground Services staff in RB Plaza, Bandar Seri Begawan

19 May 2015

  • RB has launched its newly refurbished and rebranded office in Dubai at Centurian Star

15 May 2015

  • RB celebrates a significant milestone this month with the 40th anniversary of the airline’s first commercial flight

8 August 2014

  • Bruneian born international star, Wu Chun, named as RB’s first International Brand Ambassador

5 May 2014

  • RB signed with Airbus for seven Airbus A320neo aircraft

3 April 2014

  • Launch of RB’s first Dreamliner flight from Melbourne making RB the first airline in the world to offer a seamless Dreamliner long-haul flight from Melbourne to London via Brunei and Dubai.

21 February 2014

  • RB unveiled new heritage inspired uniforms for cabin crew

2 December 2013

  • First RB flight operated by an all-femalecrew at the flight deck; Captain Sharifah Czarena Suriany Syed Hashim (First RB Female Captain) and SFO Dk Haryati Pg Hj Abd Rais (Brunei’s first female pilot)

1 December 2013

  • First Dreamliner flight to Long Haul flight to Dubai and London

23 October 2013

  • First B787 aircraft to land in Ninoy Aquino International Airport, Manila, Philippines (also RB’s first commercial flight to Manila using the Dreamliner)

19 October 2013

  • First B787 aircraft to land in Kuala Lumpur International Airport, KLIA, Malaysia (also RB’s first commercial flight to Kuala Lumpur on the Dreamliner) flying from Bandar Seri Begawan to Jeddah on Brunei National Day

18 October 2013

  • First Commercial flight of RR’s 787 to Singapore

12 October 2013

  • Launching of a Betterfly; RB’s B787 Dreamliner. The first airline in Southeast Asia to operate the B787 Dreamliner

July 2013:

  • RB launches iPad mini business class service – the first airline in the world to introduce iPad mini as inflight entertainment enhancement. The service is available for Business Class passengers flying on RB’s Bangkok, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Shanghai and Singapore routes

May 2013:

  • RB launches Double Daily flights to Kuala Lumpur

January 2013:

  • RB’s website starts its revamp with a new address: www.flyroyalbrunei.com (previously www.bruneiair.com)

18 November 2012:

  • RB’s 38th Anniversary of Incorporation

6 November 2012:

  • RB becomes the first National flag carrier in Southeast Asia to appoint a female airline captain; Captain Sharifah Czarena Suriany Syed Hashim

October 2012:

  • RB’s Rebranding Journey began with its first phase: reveal of new logo and aircraft livery

March 2012:

  • RB officially launched its daily service to Melbourne in commemoration of its 1 year anniversary

November 2011:

  • RB officially launched its’ newly enhanced Internet Booking Engine on www.bruneair.com

June 2010:

  • RB’s newly-leased 777-200ER took off on its first commercial flight from Bandar Seri Begawan to London via Dubai.

January 2010:

  • RB introduced Royal Brunei Holidays, a revamp of its Golden Touch Holidays, offering guests value-for money packages for their holidays locally and abroad. 

2000s

16 May 2004

  • RB flies daily to London via Dubai

December 2003 and January 2004

  • Two more Airbus A320s were delivered. RB operates a fleet of six Boeing B767-300s, two Airbus A320s and two Airbus A319s.

August and September 2003

  • RB took delivery of two new Airbus A319 aircraft.

1990s

14 May 1991

  • RB flew twice weekly to London Heathrow
  • Employed the use of Fokker 50 to service Miri and Labuan, two destinations important to the growth of Brunei’s oil and gas industry.

21 November 1990

  • RB’s inaugural flight to London Gatwick

June 1990

  • RB took delivery of the first of three B767-200ER aircraft.
  • 1980s

    12 December 1981

    • RB added a third B737-200QC Combi to its fleet, expanding its network to Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta

    Late 80s

    • Late 80s saw the acquisition of three B757-200 aircraft, with routes to Taipei and Dubai introduced

1970s

14 May 1975:

  • The maiden Royal Brunei Airlines flight to Singapore left Bandar Seri Begawan on a Boeing 737-200QC.
  • Flight to Kota Kinabalu also began the same day, whilst Hong Kong flew the next day.

Awards

WINNER
REGIONAL AIRLINES – ASIA