world’s first humanitarian travel organization
Our story - Raptim's history

Becoming the World’s First Humanitarian Travel Organization

Over 65 years ago, Raptim pioneered the world of humanitarian travel by air. At a time when ships were the only means of traveling to developing countries, our founders chartered a Dakota to fly missionaries from Amsterdam to Entebbe. Thanks to Raptim’s vision, humanitarian travel would change forever.

On 8 October 1947, that famous first plane departed from Amsterdam. On board were fifteen missionaries headed for Uganda. It soon turned out that air travel was far faster and cheaper than ships. And perhaps most importantly, the time and money the missionaries saved could be reinvested in their work in Africa. More flights soon followed. 

“On 8 October 1947, that famous first Dakota departed from Amsterdam.”

Two years later, Raptim was founded. Monthly charter flights to Africa were quickly established – followed by regular charter flights to Asia in 1966. A network of specialized travel agents was set up to handle global operations.

In the meantime, we started offering our services to an expanding group of travelers, always keeping in mind the social and humanitarian objectives that had inspired our founders.

From the 1970s onwards, our passengers started coming to us with more specific needs. They needed more services than our pre-scheduled charter flights could offer. So we turned to the leading airlines for greater variety and flexibility.

After negotiating special agreements, Raptim became the only organization to offer humanitarian rates for scheduled flights. That way, we could continue guaranteeing our humanitarian travelers lower fares, so more of their funds could go towards helping others.

With our exclusive negotiated flexible fares and dedication to serving those who serve the world, Raptim grew into a leader in the field of humanitarian travel. However, our independent offices around the globe worked under a variety of names – Raptim Travel, MTS, Multatuli Travel, Menno Travel, McTavish and Jet Travel.

As we celebrated our 65th anniversary, we made the decision to unite – as one organization under one name.

Today, we are Raptim Humanitarian Travel. Together, we have renewed our dedication and focus on the complex – and at times, very urgent – travel needs of humanitarian travelers. Including NGOs, charitable and faith-based organizations, aid workers and volunteers.

Because we believe that our world is a better place when caring and compassionate people can travel where they are needed most. Once we were the pioneers of humanitarian travel. Now, with all our offices working together as one, Raptim looks forward to continuing to help the people who help our world.