The company was established in 1995 as Deer Jet Airlines. In 1998, it began offering international services under the Deer Air branding. In October 2007, it received its first Airbus A319 and began returning the formerly operated Boeing 737s. Deer Jet began providing charter services in December 2008 using a fleet of A319s and corporate jets. The airline was authorized by the Civil Aviation Administration of China to operate scheduled air services in 2009.
On 2 April 2010, Beijing Capital Airlines CO., LTD. launched its first service, based in Beijing Capital International Airport. Deer Jet Airlines was divided into two companies on May 4, 2010. While the charter operation has kept the Deer Jet branding, scheduled operations using Airbus aircraft were renamed Capital Airlines. Capital Airlines operates mainly in China (including Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan), focusing on international air passenger service and cargo transport operations.