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Airbus A330-200 Gulf Air

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Airbus A330-200 - Gulf Air

Gulf Air is the flag carrier of the Kingdom of Bahrain. The airline started in the 1940s as an air taxi service from Bahrein to Doha and Dhahran and in 1950 it was named 'Gulf Aviation'. In these days the fleet comprised Avro Ansons and De Havilland DH.86B biplanes. BOAC (British Overseas Airways Corporation) became a major shareholder in 1951 with a 22 percent stake. In 1973 the governments of the four Gulfstates - Bahrain, Qatar, Abu Dhabi and Oman - purchased BOAC's shares and each government acquired a 25 percent in the company, which was renamed 'Gulf Air'. The airline then became the flag carrier for the four states.

The airline's first widebody aircraft type was the Lockheed L-1011 Tristar, of which the first entered service in early 1976 and of which thirteen were operated. The airline also flew two Boeing 747's for a short time and in 1988 the Boeing 767 began replacing the TriStars. Today Gulf Air flies Airbus A330-200 and A340-300 widebody aircraft. The first of six A330-200 was delivered in 1999. Gulf Air has ordered the A330-300 and Boeing 787-8.

In 2002 Qatar withdrew from Gulf Air in favour of its own airline Qatar Airways, followed in 2006 by Abu Dhabi, which started Etihad Airways. In 2007 Oman also withdrew, so that Gulf Air is now the flag carrier of Bahrain only.

The large photograph shows a Gulf Air Airbus A330-200 at Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport. Gulf Air planes are painted in a striking 'Golden Falcon' colour scheme. The picture below shows the old livery, which also was very attractive.

Airbus A330-200 Gulf Air

© All text and pictures: © copyright © The Widebody Aircraft Parade ©