Back in 1947, Air Algérie was founded as the Société Algérienne de Construction Aéronautique (SACA) – Air Algérie.
Six years later, that company merged with the Compagnie Air Transport to form the Compagnie Générale de Transports Aériens (CGTA) – Air Algérie.
In 1962, the company became Air Algérie (Entreprise Nationale d’exploitation des Services Aériens) and one year later, the Algerian government took over 51% of its assets.
In 1974, the company became completely owned by the Algerian government, after it acquired the remaining 17% stake held by Air France.
In 1983, the company split up into separate enterprises, one for the domestic air traffic (IAS), the other for international air traffic.
One year later, the two companies mentioned above merged again and took in charge terminals management.
In 1987, Air Algérie is relieved from terminals management.
Back in 2003, daily flights in peak periods went as high as 120.
In February 2009, Air Algérie opened the ALG – PEK – ALG services. Furthermore, the airline company developed a more consistent international flight network, the domestic flight network also being consolidated with more flight paths between Algiers and the big cities (Annaba, Constantine, Oran).
In 2010, there has been a reorganization of the company, partially due to the fact that the fleet has also been expanded. Four ATR and three Boeing aircraft joined the existing fleet.
Pursuing the same spirit of renewal, in 2011 another four Boeing 737-800 were bought.
November 2012 marks the beginning of a € 600 million investment, which goes as far as 2016. The company announced the acquisition of eight aircraft, two of them being freighters.
The carrier’s intention of expanding its fleet also seems visible in February 2013, since unofficial sources attest that the company ordered three additional Airbus A330-200s, five Boeing 737-800s and eight Boeing 787-8s. It was speculated that the newly acquired Airbus A330s will be deployed on some new routed involving cities such as New York, Shanghai, Johannesburg and São Paulo.
In January 2014, Air Algérie ordered three 68-seater ATR 72s, which made Air Algérie the largest operator of this type of aircraft within Africa. The first of the three aircraft was delivered in December.
In 2015, Air Algérie took delivery of the remaining two ATR 72s, as well as three Airbus A330-200s. The new A330-200 aircraft has a new and completely redesigned cabin with more spacious seats (18 passengers in Business class, 14 in Premium Economy and 219 in Economy class), as well as the latest generation of the in-flight entertainment system.
In September 2015, Air Algérie commenced twice-weekly flights between Algiers and Budapest, its 32nd European route from Algiers.
In May 2017, Air Algerie announced its plans to expand its network with new African and North American destinations. New routes to Cameroon and Gabon will soon be launched, and the airline intends to open other routes to the American continent, including Algiers-New York, but this process requires an audit and certification process.
During its past 20 years history, Air Algérie had four accidents with fatalities, two of them involving cargo planes (1994 – 5 dead, 2006 – 3 dead), and the third being the Air Algérie Flight 6289 crash from March 2003, when 97 passengers and 6 crew members died, only 1 passenger surviving. The last fatal accident occurred in July 2014, when Air Algérie Flight 5017, a McDonnell Douglas Boeing MD-83 leased from Swiftair, crashed in northern Mali, killing all people on board, 110 passengers and 6 crew members.