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Yesterday and today - our success story

Right from the start, we have been developing and fine-tuning travel cost management, even revolutionizing areas of it.

Our company continues the tradition of UATP, the first payment system worldwide for business travel. Already in 1936, airline pilots and personnel were using UATP for accounting. The logo of this UATP card still appears on AirPlus cards today. In 1986, eleven airline companies formed the AirPlus Limited Card to continue the tradition of this brand. From this collaboration, Lufthansa AirPlus Service Card Ltd. was born in 1989.

Important facts at a glance


1990 The first AirPlus UATP cards are issued for invoicing airline tickets.

1992 With the AirPlus Eurocard, the company creates a payment capability for all business trip expenses. In the same year, AirPlus launched the world’s first credit card with a chip.

1993 Introducing the AirPlus VISA card, AirPlus becomes the first to issue a double card for frequent travelers.

1995 AirPlus, a pioneer in Business Travel Management, introduces the analysis tool which today still defines the standard for evaluation of flight costs.

1996 AirPlus breaks into European markets.

1997 AirPlus is the first provider to offer business clients the possibility of consolidating various credit card providers together and evaluating them.

1999 Together with the Bavarian State Bank as issuance partner, AirPlus issues a new corporate card duo, thereby confirming its clear concentration on business-to-business transactions.

2000 A new brand, AirPlus International, is founded under which AirPlus products and solutions are distributed.

2001 AirPlus starts the customer driven Business Travel Portal, providing Travel Managers and business travelers with a single Internet address for all information and services.



2002 AirPlus International Inc., New York and AirPlus International Ltd., London are formed. AirPlus enters a strategic cooperation with British Airways.

2003 The AirPlus Information Manager - the new torchbearer of Europe’s number 1 provider in management systems for travel costs. Companies now have at their fingertips a unique online solution for the analysis and control of their travel budgets. With this new tool, all global travel costs from plane tickets to taxis can be evaluated in detail with a single Management Information System.

AirPlus forms a subsidiary in Switzerland. The AirPlus International AG with headquarters in Zurich is responsible for business in Switzerland and Liechtenstein. At year’s end, a new regional headquarters opens in Hong Kong, representing an important step into the Asian growth markets. AirPlus gains a new cooperation partner in Continental Airlines.

2004 The AirPlusCorporate Card is launched in Germany with a new design and an expanded service package. AirPlus sets new standards in the German company credit card market and is the only provider worldwide of a company credit card with a collecting function with Miles & More. The international partner network is expanded. Postbank, Carlson Wagonlit Travel, TAP Portugal as well as JCB are new partners.

AirPlus celebrates its 15-year anniversary. Once a small, highly specialized company is now Germany’s leading provider of solutions for Travel Management.

2005 AirPlus offers its products in 28 countries. The specialists in Business Travel Management bring the two leading car rental agencies Europcar and AVIS on board as new cooperation partners.

2006 A milestone for AirPlus Corporate Card in Germany. AirPlus is now an independent provider of credit cards for on the road. Plus, the AirPlus Business Travel Index provides market indicators for Travel Managers. The data is based on compiled international business travel transactions that German AirPlus business customers complete annually.

A partnership with the China Merchants Bank enables companies in China to easily pay for business travel costs and provide efficient travel management.

2007 AirPlus successfully sustains its expansion course in international markets and pursues its goal of being the preferred global payment and reporting provider in Business Travel Management by 2012.

Thanks to its high quality of service AirPlus is named one of the top 10 customer-oriented providers in Germany in 2007.

Starting in September 2007, for the first time companies can automatically invoice and exactly evaluate climate protection premiums - an innovation in Business Travel Management. With the “Industry First Solution” from AirPlus, companies live up to their ecological responsibility and are trendsetters in terms of Corporate Social Responsibility. AirPlus was awarded the Business Travel Show Innovation Award in 2007 for these services.

2008 AirPlus continues its successful international growth and strengthens presence in Asia.

AirPlus International, a leading global travel payment provider and Air China, the leading national flag carrier, have announced their strategic partnership in the field of business travel: Both parties today unveiled a unique air travel payment and reporting system - the Air China AirPlus Company Account. The solution provides the airline’s corporate customers with a new option to pay for travel on all national and international Air China flights and tariffs. The move shows the commitment from both parties to make the settlement of business travel expenses as convenient as possible for leading Chinese companies, multinational companies, as well as official institutions.

Furthermore, AirPlus has founded a subsidiary company in China - the AirPlus Payment Management Co. Ltd. based in Shanghai. The new subsidiary will intensify the customer liaison and support the local rollout of the joint payment solution.



Today over 41,900 company clients count on the products and solutions from AirPlus and manage their business travel with greater ease, while cutting costs more effectively.

From an effective payment solution for airline tickets arose a multifaceted spectrum of products for the professional optimization of Travel Management in companies. But that’s not all – we are constantly developing our product offerings and guarantee new, innovative solutions to come.


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