Hungarian Air Force

Operator Profile

Key Facts

Current Title:
Magyar Honvédség Repülö Csapatai
English Title:
Hungarian Air Force
First Established:
ICAO Code:


Narrative Summary

Following Hungarian independence in November 1918, a small air arm was established operating surviving aircraft from Hungarian factories and training schools. This air arm became the Hungarian Red Air Force under the short lived Hungarian Soviet Republic, but was disbanded upon its downfall.
Under the Versailles Treaty, Hungary was forbidden from owning military aircraft. However, a secret air arm was gradually established under the cover of civilian flying clubs. During 1938 the existence of the air force was made known. The air arm was reorganised and expanded. On 1st January 1939 it became independent of the army. It subsequently participated in clashes with the newly established Slovak Republic and in the border confrontation with Romania. On 1st March 1942 the air force was returned to army control. In April 1941, operations were conducted in support of the German invasion of Yugoslavia and on 27 June 1941 Hungary declared war on the Soviet Union. In the summer of 1942 and air brigade was attached to the Luftwaffe’s VIII Fliegerkorps on the Eastern Front. From March 1944 Allied bomber raids began on Hungary and progressively increased in intensity. Late in 1944 all efforts were redirected towards countering the advancing Soviet Army, but to no avail. All fighting in Hungary ended on 16th April 1945.
A small air arm was organised along Soviet lines during 1947. Following the communist takeover, Russian military aid was stepped-up and a major expansion programme initiated. When Soviet forces invaded in November 1956, to suppress the national uprising, sections of the Hungarian Air Force attacked Soviet forces and resisted Russian attempts to occupy their bases. The resistance was shortlived and the air force was demobilised soon after. A reconstituted air arm was reformed in the following year, but initially only as an internal security force. Gradually, the air force was expanded again, but it remained an integral part of the army and was essentially a defensive force. During the 1990’s all combat aircraft were fitted with new IFF (Identification Friend or Foe) systems to enable operations in western airspace. In April 2002 Hungary joined the NFTC pilot training programme in Canada.

Key Dates:
1947    Hungarian Air Force re-established
1952    First jet aircraft delivered – Yak-23
1956    Air Force disbanded following Hungarian Uprising
1957    New Hungarian Air Force formed as part of the Army
1960    First helicopters received – Mi-1

Current Status

To be added

Future Plans

None known at present.


National Insignia

National Insignia

Aircraft Serial Numbers

The Hungarian military serial numbering system consists of a two, three or four figure number taken from part of the aircraft’s individual construction number, e.g. MiG-17PF 403.


Aircraft Designations

None – Manufacturers designations used.

Current Aircraft Inventory

Table of Current Service Aircraft

All-Time Aircraft Used List

All-Time Table of Aircraft Used

Aircraft NOT Used

False reports of aircraft on order or in service


Main Headquarters

Ministry of Defence, Batalon U.7/11,1055 Budapest, V.

Organisational Structure

The flying units of the air force are organised into a single command, Air Command. The main unit is the Ezred (Regiment) or Osztaly (Wing) with between two and five Szàzad (Squadron) each.

Current Order of Battle

Table of Current Order of Battle

Historical Orders of Battle

List of Historical Orders of Battle – to be added.

All-Time Flying Units List

To be added.

Air Bases

Current Air Bases

The main air bases currently used are Kecskemét, Szolnok and Pápa.

All-Time Air Bases Used List

In addition to the main bases, there are also a number of smaller airports and airfields around the country which are sometimes used by the Air Force.
Military Air Bases Listing – to be added.

More Information


Hungarian Military Aviation Bibliography – to be added.


World Air Power Journal No.3 p.150
World Air Power Journal No.14 p.148
Air Forces Monthly June 1997


Hungarian Defence Forces Official Website

wikipedia: Hungarian Air Force

Scramble: Hungarian Air Force

Air-Britain Photos: Hungarian Air Force

Hungarian Air Force

Hungarian Air Force Aircraft in 1956

National Insignia Changes

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