Boeing 737-59D G-THOD (c/n 24695/1872) is seen touching down at Amsterdam Int'l on 29Jan06
ThomsonFly changed its name to Thomson Airways on 01Nov08 and now includes the former First Choice Airways
Thomsonfly traces its roots to its parent airline, Britannia Airways, founded by Ted Langton. The airline began as Euravia in 1962. The name was changed to Britannia Airways and remained until December 2004. Britannia grew rapidly when it acquired Boeing 737-200 aircraft, and was the European launch customer for the Boeing 767 and then moved to an all-Boeing 767 and 757 fleet in the mid-1990s, with a total fleet of 45 aircraft by 2004.
Thomson Holidays subsequently embraced a web-oriented rebranding and used the Thomsonfly name to include all of the UK flying operations, with the larger Britannia Airways rebranded as Thomsonfly in 2005.
Scheduled operations began on 31 March 2004 with four Boeing 737-500 aircraft, from a new passenger terminal at Coventry Airport. The airline became involved in controversy when it took over ownership of the airport lease. A number of local residents and Warwick District Council mounted a campaign against regular passenger flights from the airport, which had previously been used for both passenger and freight aircraft. The planning case was contentious and lengthy, and Thomsonfly continued to operate from Coventry awaiting the outcome of the case. Planning permission was granted for a larger passenger terminal and the ownership of the lease has passed to CAFCO, an airport and property development company with no links to TUI.
On 28 April 2005, Thomsonfly became the first airline to fly from Robin Hood Airport Doncaster Sheffield. Thomsonfly was also the first airline to operate direct long haul services from the airport. The airline remains the dominant carrier at Robin Hood Airport Doncaster Sheffield, as well as Coventry Airport and Bournemouth Airport, where a base was also established.