Dato' Sri Tony Fernandes, Group CEO of AirAsia Berhad lighting-up the oil lamp witnessed by Honorable Hussein A.Bhaila, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Sri Lanka (in white)
Skytrax ‘World’s Best Low-Cost Airline’, AirAsia officially celebrated its daily direct flights between the two capital cities of Colombo – Kuala Lumpur today. The joyous and colorful event was kicked-off with a cultural Malaysian dance at the Hilton Colombo.
The momentous event was witnessed by Dato’ Sri Tony Fernandes, Group CEO of AirAsia Berhad, High Commissioner of Malaysia to Sri Lanka H.E. Rosli Ismail, Honorable Hussein A.Bhaila, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Sri Lanka, Chairman of Sri Lanka Tourism, Bernard Goonetilleke joined by the Senior Management from AirAsia Berhad.
Colombo which is AirAsia’s third destination in South Asia will complement AirAsia’s aggressive growth in that market besides feeding more traffic to both countries. AirAsia currently flies from Kuala Lumpur to two destinations in South Asia – Dhaka, Bangladesh which started in March 2009 followed-by Tiruchirappalli (Trichy) in South India that commenced in December 2008.
With excellent air connectivity between Colombo and Kuala Lumpur, mutual economic benefits can be expected as AirAsia’s low fares and innovative services will definitely stimulate more travel both inbound and outbound from these two destinations. The Sri Lankan people could also take advantage of Kuala Lumpur as the connecting gateway to over 130 routes in Asia and beyond.
Dato’ Sri Tony Fernandes, Group Chief Executive Officer of AirAsia, said, “Colombo has long been on our network radar and we are very proud to liberalize the market to the world. We have sold approximately 30,000 seats since we opened for sale about two months ago. This is indeed a clear testament that AirAsia’s low fares have empowered people to fly. We are excited play a key role in promoting Colombo’s beautiful city and people to the rest of the world,”
“We have been promoting Colombo aggressively to Malaysians, across Asean region and even beyond to destinations such as Australia and United Kingdom, in fact we have also included Colombo in our recent ‘Big Sale’ campaign and cross sell it to other destinations. We are also promoting Colombo on our website, AirAsia.com. We are certain that Colombo will definitely leverage from the huge exposure gained from these initiatives. Our current network already covers Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Singapore, China, India, Australia and United Kingdom.” concluded Tony
Mr. Bernard Goonetilleke, Chairman of Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau said, “Today’s launch signifies an important milestone in the field of aviation and tourism to Malaysia as well as Sri Lanka. The launch of daily flights to Colombo from Kuala Lumpur will be mutually beneficial to both Air Asia and Sri Lanka Tourism, as we can expect a considerable increase in both inbound and outbound travel to both destinations, which bodes well for tourism in both Malaysia and Sri Lanka.”
AirAsia has begun the daily direct flights departing from LCC Terminal from August 15, 2009 with the new 180-seater Airbus A320 which are well-known for its comfortable leather seats and wide aisles. AirAsia guests may enjoy easy payment and booking channels: online at www.airasia.com, via mobile phone at mobile.airasia.com, at sales counters in all airports the airline flies to, sales offices in major cities, and through sales agents.AirAsia through its holiday division GoHoliday, goholiday.airasia.com is also offering some great online hotel deals where they may choose their holiday lodgings from over 50,000 hotels to suit their budget.