Tuesday, May 12, 2009

AirAsia wants to expand in Singapore

11 May 2009

AIRASIA is now the biggest low-cost carrier here operating 48 daily flights in and out of Singapore, says its group chief executive officer, Mr Tony Fernandes.

He wants to increase these to 60 by the end of this year when he expects to have more flights between Singapore and Penang.

New destinations in East Malaysia and the east coast of the Malaysian peninsula are also in the plan for AirAsia to continues its rapid growth in Singapore since last year, he says.

Mr Fernandes cites the integrated resorts in SIngapore as an example of the huge business potential for AirAsia and other budget airlines.

"But I think there must be more long-term planning for Changi Airport to cater to budget carriers," he says.

These carriers need more support from the airport to cut costs and solve other operational issues, he adds.

"There is no reason why we cannot do 100 flights per day. It is a volume game for us, but need low costs to offer low fares.

"We have a business model that is different from the model for full service airlines. You cannot treat all airlines the same way."

AirAsia recently won Skytrax's 2009 best low-cost airline award.

On May 7, it held the official launching ceremony for the Singapore-Langkawi daily flight from June 1, when it will also start a daily Singapore-Penang service and the daily eighth flight between Singapore and Kuala Lumpur.

To start the new service, it is offering a S$1 and a RM1 fare for flights from Singapore to Langkawi.

AirAsia's GoHoliday division is also offering its guests free rooms in its partner hotels in Langkawi. Go to goholiday.airasia.com to check out the special offer.

You can make bookings from May 7 till May 12.

The promotional first-come-first served airfare and free hotels rooms are subject to availability.

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