The airline was formed in 1993 following a merger of Nürnberger Flugdienst (NFD) and Reise- und Industrieflug (RFG), two commuter airlines based in Nürnberg and Dortmund, respectively. Flight operations using an initial fleet of ATR 42 and 72 aircraft inherited from Eurowing's predecessors were launched on 1 January 1994. Subsequently, BAe 146 aircraft were added to the fleet, which were later followed by larger Airbus A320 family aircraft and even an Airbus A310. Independent flight operations came to end when Eurowings was acquired by Lufthansa.[when?]
Development since the 2000s
As at 31 December 2006, Lufthansa had a 49% shareholding in Eurowings with a call option for 50.91% of the remaining stakes, bringing the company into the Lufthansa Group fold. At that time, Eurowings was the owner of Germanwings, thus creating a low-cost branch within the Lufthansa trust. Plans to merge these two airlines with TUIfly (controlled by TUI Travel) into a joint and independent holding company, were brought forth during 2008, but did not materialize. Instead, Lufthansa announced in December 2008 to acquire Germanwings from Eurowings.
In September 2010 Eurowings closed its headquarters and technical infrastructure in Dortmund, Germany, and moved both to Düsseldorf, where Eurowings operated most of its flights since the airline was part of Lufthansa Regional. In March 2011, the maintenance division at Nürnberg Airport was also closed.
In late 2013 Eurowings started to operate flights for sister airline Germanwings as short haul flights, that are not operated from Frankfurt or Munich, are transferred from Lufthansa to Germanwings. All Eurowings flights operated on behalf of Lufthansa Regional ceased by autumn 2014 and were rebranded to Germanwings, the last ones to and from Düsseldorf.
In July 2014, Lufthansa announced that Eurowings would transfer from its CRJ fleet to an Airbus A320 fleet of up to 23 frames. Eurowings is to open its first base outside of Germany, in Basel, in spring 2015.