Monday, May 30, 2016

AirAsia perkenal laluan baharu Johor Bahru - Guangzhou

JOHOR BAHRU: AirAsia Bhd. (AirAsia) memperkenalkan perkhidmatan penerbangan antarabangsa terbaharu Guangzhou, China-Johor Bahru dan Johor Bahru-Guangzhou di Lapangan Terbang Antarabangsa Senai (LTAS) di sini mulai hari ini.

Penerbangan sulung dimulakan dari Guangzhou yang tiba di LTAS pada 6.50 pagi tadi disambut oleh Pengerusi Jawatankuasa Pelancongan, Perdagangan dan Kepenggunaan negeri, Datuk Tee Siew Kiong.

AirAsia menawarkan penerbangan harian Guangzhou - Johor Bahru dengan jadual penerbangan Johor Bahru - Guangzhou pukul 10 malam dan Guangzhou - Johor Bahru dari Lapangan Terbang Antarabangsa Baiyun pada 3 pagi.

Bagi meraikan pengenalan laluan baharu itu, AirAsia menawarkan promosi tambang dari serendah RM179 sehala mulai hari ini hingga 12 Jun untuk tempoh perjalanan dari 31 Mei hingga 24 November ini.

Ketua Pegawai Eksekutif AirAsia, Aireen Omar berkata, dengan pengenalan laluan itu, pihaknya komited untuk mengembangkan hab selatan mereka dan akan memperkukuhkan kerjasama dengan pihak LTAS.

"Kami juga komited meningkatkan lagi ketibaan pelancong domestik dan antarabangsa ke Johor Bahru sekali gus memperkukuhkan penguasaan pasaran di hab selatan kami," katanya dalam satu kenyataan.

Sumber: Utusan Online | 30 Mei 2016

Johor sasar sejuta pelancong China menerusi laluan Johor Bahru - Guangzhou

KULAI: Kerajaan Johor menyasarkan kedatangan sejuta pelancong China tahun ini dengan adanya laluan baharu yang diperkenalkan syarikat penerbangan AirAsia iaitu dari Guangzhou ke Johor Bahru.

Exco Pelancongan, Perdagangan dan Kepenggunaan Johor Datuk Tee Siew Kiong berkata beliau yakin statistik kemasukan pelancong dari China akan meningkat, sekali gus merancakkan pertumbuhan sektor pelancongan negeri ini.

"Kita yakin jumlah kemasukan warga China ke Johor akan meningkat sebanyak 30 peratus tahun ini seterusnya mampu merekodkan lebih sejuta orang," katanya kepada pemberita selepas menyambut penumpang penerbangan sulung dari Guangzhou ke Johor Bahru di Lapangan Terbang Antarabangsa Senai (LTAS), di sini Isnin.

Tee berkata AsiaAsia melakukan tindakan yang tepat dengan memperkenalkan laluan itu sejajar dengan peningkatan pelancong, peniaga dan pelabur dari China khususnya Guangzhou ke negeri ini.

Beliau berkata kemasukan pelancong dari China ke Johor menyaksikan peningkatan seramai 169,775 orang iaitu daripada 628,087 orang yang direkodkan pada 2014 kepada 797,862 orang, tahun lepas.

Katanya, penerbangan terus dari Guangzhou ke Johor Bahru yang tiba pada pukul 6.50 pagi ini, melibatkan 176 penumpang terdiri daripada majoriti warga China dari Guangzhou iaitu sebanyak 95 peratus manakala bakinya warga tempatan.

"Inisiatif ini dapat memendekkan jarak selama tiga jam dan memudahkan ketibaan rakyat kedua-dua bandar raya seterusnya membantu meningkatkan jalinan kerjasama dalam bidang pelancongan, perdagangan dan pelaburan," katanya.

Sementara itu, Ketua Pegawai Eksekutif Senai Airport Terminal Services Sdn Bhd, Md Derick Basir berkata pihaknya memperuntukan sebanyak RM7 juta untuk menaik taraf LTAS bermula Julai ini dan dijangka siap pada pertengahan Disember depan.

"Kerja naik taraf ini termasuk memisahkan bahagian domestik dan antarabangsa. Selepas pengubahsuaian, pintu satu dan dua akan dikhususkan untuk penerbangan antarabangsa manakala pintu tiga dan empat adalah untuk domestik," katanya.

Beliau berkata selain itu, sebanyak tujuh kaunter daftar masuk juga akan ditambah menjadikan jumlah keseluruhan 23 kaunter, penstrukturan semula kaunter Imigresen serta penambahan 16 premis perniagaan runcit serta makanan dan minuman.

"Kami turut memasang papan tanda pelbagai bahasa antaranya bahasa Malaysia, bahasa Inggeris dan bahasa asing lain bergantung kepada majoriti pengguna lapangan terbang ini, seiring dengan hasrat kerajaan menjadikan LTAS bertaraf global," katanya.

Sumber: Bernama | 30 Mei 2016

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Pemanjangan landasan LTSIP daripada 2,400 m kepada 3,500 m perlu diberi keutamaan

KUALA LUMPUR: Sudah tiba masanya Kerajaan Persekutuan memanjangkan landasan Lapangan Terbang Sultan Ismail Petra (LTSIP), Kota Bharu, Kelantan untuk kegunaan pesawat di bawah kod 4E seperti A330-300, B777-200ER, A350-900, dan B747-400. 

Persoalannya mengapakah susah sangat Kerajaan Persekutuan untuk meluluskan projek pemanjangan landasan LTSIP sedangkan projek pembesaran dan pemanjangan landasan di negeri-negeri lain terutamanya Sabah, Sarawak, Labuan, dan Terengganu mendapat perhatian sewajarnya. 

Di bawah Rancangan Malaysia Kelapan (RMK8) misalnya, landasan Lapangan Terbang Antarabangsa Kuching (KIA) telah dipanjangkan daripada 2,454 meter (m) kepada 3,780 m, manakala landasan Lapangan Terbang Antarabangsa Kota Kinabalu (KKIA) telah dipanjangkan daripada 2,987 m kepada 3,780 m di bawah Rancangan Malaysia Kesembilan (RMK9) dan projek ini telah disambung di bawah Rancangan Malaysia Kesepuluh (RMK10).

Di bawah RMK9 juga, landasan Lapangan Terbang Sultan Mahmud (LTSM), Kuala Terengganu telah dipanjangkan daripada 2,012 m kepada 3,480 m, manakala landasan Lapangan Terbang Labuan (LTL) dipanjangkan daripada 2,286 m kepada 2,745 m.

Oleh itu, sudah sampai masanya giliran landasan LTSIP dipanjangkan untuk menampung pengendalian pesawat berbadan lebar lebih-lebih lagi LTSIP terletak di lokasi yang amat strategik untuk menjadi sebuah lapangan terbang antarabangsa wilayah (regional international airport) bagi Wilayah Ekonomi Pantai Timur (ECER) dan juga wilayah Selatan Bawah Thailand (Thailand's Deep South).

Dalam perkara ini, Kerajaan Persekutuan di Putrajaya perlulah mengambil perhatian serius akan keperluan pemanjangan landasan LTSIP untuk pengendalian pesawat berbadan lebar kerana ia bukan sahaja dapat menjadi pemangkin kepada pertumbuhan industri pelancongan Kelantan dan ECER tetapi juga dapat menarik kemasukan lebih banyak pelaburan langsung asing (FDI) ke wilayah strategik ini.

Sumber: Kota Bharu Airport | www.kotabharuairport.blogspot.com

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Firefly gantung laluan Kota Bharu - Langkawi mulai 14 Jun ini

KUALA LUMPUR: Syarikat penerbangan Firefly akan menggantung laluan Kota Bharu - Langkawi (KBR-LGK) berkuat kuasa 14 Jun ini. 

Firefly menawarkan perkhidmatan penerbangan tiga kali seminggu bagi laluan ini, iaitu setiap hari Selasa, Khamis, dan Sabtu, manakala penerbangan terakhir bagi laluan ini adalah pada 11 Jun ini. 

Perkhidmatan penerbangan terus yang mula diperkenalkan sejak 27 Oktober tahun lepas ini hanya mampu bertahan kira-kira tujuh bulan sahaja. 

Walau bagaimanapun, Firefly akan terus beroperasi bagi tiga laluan lagi dari atau ke Kota Bharu, iaitu Kota Bharu - Subang (KBR-SZB), Kota Bharu - Pulau Pinang (KBR-PEN), dan Kota Bharu - Johor Bahru (KBR-JHB). 

Sumber: Kota Bharu Airport | www.kotabharuairport.blogspot.com

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

MAVCOM issues show cause letter with 14-day deadline to Rayani Air

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian Aviation Commission (MAVCOM) has issued a show cause letter with a 14-day deadline to Rayani Air, before the commission decides on the airline's fate.

In a statement today, MAVCOM said it would decide whether Rayani Air should be allowed to continue to hold the Air Service Licence (ASL) or have it revoked or suspended.

"Following the provisional suspension of Rayani Air's Air Operator Certificate (AOC) by the Department of Civil Aviation on April 11, 2016, MAVCOM has conducted an evaluation of Rayani Air's commercial standing and capabilities to determine its ability to continue as an ASL holder.

"Once the evaluation is completed, MAVCOM has issued a show cause letter to Rayani Air, which is required to submit its representation in writing in 14 days from today," it said.

A company requires both ASL and AOC to operate passenger and cargo airline business, and should MAVCOM revoke Rayani Air's ASL, the airline is no longer allowed to provide air transport services commercially in Malaysia.

In the meantime, it is advisable for consumers to refrain from making any flight arrangements with Rayani Air to ensure that they do not face any inconvenience in their travels.

In addition, MAVCOM would work with the relevant parties to assist affected consumers, it said.

MAVCOM, which was established on March 1, 2016, is responsible in matters relating to issuance, suspension and revocation of an ASL.

Source: Bernama | 25 May 2016

Malindo Air sambung semula laluan Kuala Lumpur - Kota Bharu mulai 1 Julai ini

KUALA LUMPUR: Syarikat penerbangan Malindo Air akan menyambung semula laluan Kuala Lumpur - Kota Bharu yang digantung sejak 23 November tahun lalu dengan kekerapan dua kali sehari bermula 1 Julai ini. 

Penerbangan OD2302 dan OD2304 dari Terminal KLIA 1, Lapangan Terbang Antarabangsa Kuala Lumpur (KLIA) masing-masing dijadualkan berlepas pada jam 06:45 dan 12:10, manakala penerbangan OD2303 dan OD2305 dari Kota Bharu ke Kuala Lumpur masing-masing dijadualkan berlepas pada jam 08:20 dan 13:55. 

Tambang promosi bermula daripada RM9.00 sehala untuk kelas ekonomi, manakala untuk kelas perniagaan tambang promosi bermula daripada RM159.00 sehala. Tambang promosi itu termasuk faedah seperti elaun bagasi percuma, hiburan dalam penerbangan dan hidangan ringan.

Untuk tempahan dan pertanyaan, orang ramai boleh layari laman sesawang www.malindoair.com, atau e-mel kepada customer_care@malindoair.com atau hubungi +603-7841 5388 mulai jam 7 pagi hingga 11 malam setiap hari.

Sumber: Kota Bharu Airport | www.kotabharuairport.blogspot.com 

Malindo Air wujudkan semula perkhidmatan harian laluan Kuala Lumpur - Kota Bharu dan Miri

KUALA LUMPUR: Malindo Air telah mewujudkan semula perkhidmatan untuk laluan di antara Lapangan Terbang Antarabangsa Kuala Lumpur (KLIA) - Kota Bharu dan Miri.

Tempahan dibuka untuk penerbangan dua kali sehari ke Kota Bharu dan penerbangan sekali sehari ke Miri yang akan bermula serentak pada 1 Julai, kata syarikat penerbangan itu dalam satu kenyataan di sini.

Tambang promosi untuk sektor Kuala Lumpur - Kota Bharu bermula daripada RM69 untuk kelas ekonomi dan RM409 untuk bisnes, sehala dan termasuk semua.

Untuk penerbangan Kuala Lumpur - Miri, tambangnya RM79 untuk kelas ekonomi dan RM669 untuk kelas bisnes, sehala dan termasuk semua.

Tambang promosi itu termasuk faedah seperti elaun bagasi percuma, hiburan dalam penerbangan dan hidangan ringan.

Untuk tempahan dan pertanyaan, orang ramai boleh layari www.malindoair.com, atau Pusat Khidmat Pelanggan di customer_care@malindoair.com atau hubungi +603-7841 5388 mulai jam 7 pagi hingga 11 malam setiap hari.

Sumber: Bernama | 25 Mei 2016

Malindo Air reinstates daily services on Kuala Lumpur - Kota Bharu and Miri routes

KUALA LUMPUR: Malindo Air has reinstated services, between the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) - Kota Bharu and Miri routes.

Bookings are now open for the twice daily flights to Kota Bharu and once a day flight to Miri which will commence simultaneously on July 1, the airline said in a statement here.

Promotional fares for the Kuala Lumpur - Kota Bharu sector starts from RM69 for economy class and RM409 for business, one-way and all inclusive.

For the Kuala Lumpur-Miri flight, it is RM79 for economy and RM669 for business class, one-way all inclusive.

The promotional fares include perks such as free baggage allowance, in-flight entertainment and light refreshments.

For bookings and enquiries, visit www.malindoair.com, or write in to Customer Care Centre at customer_care@malindoair.com or call +603-7841 5388 from 7am to 11pm daily.

Source: Bernama | 25 May 2016

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

KLIA Aeropolis a major boon

Greener pastures: Liow looking at a model of the Aeropolis during the launch of the project. Accompanying Liow at the event in Kuala Lumpur are Badlisham (right) and Malaysia Airports Chairman Tan Sri Dr Wan Abdul Aziz Wan Abdullah.
KUALA LUMPUR: The KLIA Aeropolis is expected to attract a gross domestic product (GDP) contribution of some RM30bil over a 15-year period and create 56,000 jobs. It will complement services offered in other regional airports.

“We are not competing with Changi Airport as we are synergistic. “We are the regional airport and we are working together with other countries.

“We are quite a big region so we will definitely do well in our air cargo area as we are creating more facilities, putting up more plans and support system for the air cargo site,” said Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai at a press conference after Malaysia Airports Holding Bhd’s (MAHB) launch of the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) Aeropolis yesterday.

Liow said with the KLIA Aeropolis project, Malaysia is focused on increa­sing its cargo and logistic traffic.

The country is targeting to increase its cargo volume bby between 2.5 million to 3 million tonnes by 2050 from 726,000 tonnes now and aims to catch up with Singapore’s 1.5 million tonnes of cargo annually, Liow added.

He said the Government has placed a greater concentration to ensure the successful development and completion of the KLIA Aeropolis.

With aviation being a key pillar of the logistics sector, Liow said the inter-ministerial National Logistics Taskforce (NLTF) was keen to see this come to fruition.

“The NLTF is being headed by me and my ministry, and we are equally committed to ensuring synergy between the nation’s logistic industry and the KLIA Aeropolis project.

“With this in mind, there have been close engagements between Malaysia Airports, NLTF, and the Malaysia Aerospace Council,” said Liow.

MAHB managing director Datuk Badlisham Ghazali said there was enough demand generated in terms of growth in air travel. More air passengers would require more planes, spare parts and maintenance.

Badlisham said the KLIA Aeropolis would serve as the core of Malaysia Airport’s air cargo and logistics ecosystem that extends to Penang and Sabah and Sarawak.

The KLIA Aeropolis development is centred around the key clusters of air cargo and logistics; aerospace and aviation parks; meetings, incentives, conferences and events (MICE), and leisure.

The project, on a total land area of 100 sq km, is one of the strategic pillars in Malaysia Airport’s five-year business plan, Runway to Success 2020.
 
Source: The Star | Nation | 24 May 2016

Monday, May 23, 2016

Malaysia Airlines to add two more Airbus A350s

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia Airlines Bhd is adding two new Airbus A350-900s with Air Lease Corporation (ALC) which will be delivered in 2018.

The national carrier said on Monday it had exercised the lease option for a 12-year lease agreement for the two new planes.

“The transaction is pursuant to the option provided under the existing Lease Agreement for the four (4) A350-900s signed by both parties in September last year,” it said.

The A350 aircraft are from ALC’s order book and they will be delivered in 2018. They will be powered by two Rolls Royce Trent XWB-84 engines. 

Malaysia Airlines’s CEO Christoph Mueller said the additional two Airbus A350-900s will complement the existing four (4) that is on order to reach a critical fleet size, allowing standby aircraft for any scheduled maintenance and enabling future network expansion. 

“Technological and innovative advancements make flying this aircraft a real pleasure and it will bring a whole new experience to our offerings, with the aircraft able to operate non-stop from Kuala Lumpur to London and throughout Asia.”

ALC chairman and CEO Steven F. Udvar-H├ízy said in addition to the four A350-900s placed by ALC last year, “we are confident that these two additional A350-900 aircraft will further maximize Malaysia Airlines’ business operations as well as global growth”.

Source: The Star Online | 23 May 2016

Two additional Airbus A350s by 2018 for Malaysia Airlines

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia Airlines Bhd (MAB) has exercised a 12-year lease agreement for an additional two new Airbus A350-900s with Air Lease Corporation (ALC), which will be delivered by 2018.

The transaction is pursuant to the option provided under the existing lease agreement for four A350-900s signed by both parties in September last year, it said in a statement Monday.

"The additional two Airbus A350-900s will complement the existing four that is on order to reach a critical fleet size, allowing standby aircraft for any scheduled maintenance and enabling future network expansion," said MAB Chief Executive Officer Christoph Mueller.

Powered by two Rolls Royce Trent XWB-84 engines, the A350 aircraft are from ALC's order book with Airbus.

"Technological and innovative advancements make flying this aircraft a real pleasure and it will bring a whole new experience to our offerings, with the aircraft able to operate non-stop from Kuala Lumpur to London and throughout Asia," he said.

Source: Bernama | 23 May 2016

Fate of Rayani Air to be decided soon - Liow

KUALA LUMPUR: The transport ministry will soon decide whether Rayani Air should continue operations after the syariah-compliant airline was suspended for three months following a string of controversies.

Minister, Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said he had received the final report on Rayani Air and was waiting for a date to decide on the (outcome) of the hearing.

"Final report given to me. I will make a final decision on Rayani Air very soon. The report is ready. I am waiting for a date to decide on the decision of the inquiry," he told reporters after launching the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) Aeropolis here today.

The final report was prepared by the Department of Civil Aviation (DCA) after an inquiry session with Rayani Air founder, Datuk G. Karthiyani at the DCA headquarters in Putrajaya on May 12.

Previously, the DCA suspended Rayani Air for three months, beginning April 11, following which the DCA undertook full administrative and safety audit of the airline's operations to assess its compliance with the Air Operator Certificate.

Meanwhile, Liow said the ministry would call Tourism Malaysia chairman Wee Choo Keong for a detailed explanation on his alleged action during the recently concluded 4th China (Beijing) International Tourism Expo 2016.

"I think, as a nation, we should promote tourism and we should promote airlines flying in Malaysia when we are abroad. I would like an explanation from him over his action," he said.

Liow was commenting on Wee's alleged tantrums at the expo in which he had lashed out at his staff after seeing that an AirAsia bunting was put up alongside other promotional materials at Tourism Malaysia's booth.

On the vanished Malaysia Airlines MH370 jetliner, the minister said the search operation continued in the southern Indian Ocean and as of today, more than 105,000 sq km had been covered.

"As I said earlier, two pieces of debris discovered in South Africa and the Mauritius Island of Rodrigues are almost certain to have come from the missing aircraft, based on the serial number.

"Let us complete the search operation up to 120,000 sq km area and not make any assumption," he said.

Flight MH370, carrying 227 passengers and 12 crew, disappeared from the radar during a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing on March 8, 2014.

The KLIA Aeropolis by Malaysia Airports is an ecosystem development that is synergistic with the airport business, and one of the strategic pillars in Malaysia Airports' five-year business plan, Runway to Success 2020.

Source: Bernama | 23 May 2016

Friday, May 20, 2016

Malaysia Aviation Group will improve transparency, operational efficiency

KUALA LUMPUR: The newly established Malaysia Aviation Group Bhd (MAG), an entity under Khazanah Nasional Bhd, will drive better transparency and focused management across its subsidiaries and improve operational efficiency.

MAG is a global aviation group with subsidiaries and equity investments, organised into four distinct business segments, namely air transportation services, ground services, aircraft leasing and talent development.

The air transportation services division, which houses Malaysia Airlines Bhd, Firefly Sdn Bhd, MASwings Sdn Bhd and MAB Kargo Sdn Bhd will be the largest contributing business segment.

In a statement today, Malaysia Airlines said also under the umbrella is the division MAB Kargo, providing standard, express and special cargo, which would apply for its own Airline Operating Certificate and would operate as a separate company as of 2017.

The ground services and engineering division comprises AeroDarat Services Sdn Bhd and MAB Engineering, while MAB Leasing and MAB Pesawat are under the aircraft leasing division and MAB Academy is under the talent development division.

MAG Chief Executive Officer, Christoph Mueller, said the new group would align structures and processes more consistently to the needs of its customers and raise overall efficiency.

"Going forward, the new structure will support every business unit's capability to access the capital market with its own value proposition," he added.

The team of board members of Malaysia Airlines, who remain unchanged, will also sit on the board of MAG.

Source: Bernama | 19 May 2016

Firefly tawar penerbangan tambahan sempena Aidilfitri dari KL dan JB ke KB

KUALA LUMPUR: Syarikat penerbangan Firefly mula membuka tempahan tiket bagi penerbangan tambahan sempena sambutan Hari Raya Aidilfitri yang dijangka jatuh pada 6 Julai ini.  

Setakat ini, penerbangan tambahan tersebut melibatkan laluan Subang (Kuala Lumpur) - Kota Bharu dan Kota Bharu - Johor Bahru pada 5 Julai ini masing-masing dengan dua dan satu penerbangan. 

Penerbangan FY6002 dan FY6004 masing-masing dijadualkan berlepas dari Lapangan Terbang Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah (LTSAAS), Subang, Selangor ke Kota Bharu pada jam 06:20 dan 09:25, manakala penerbangan FY6003 dan FY6005 dari Kota Bharu ke Subang masing-masing dijadualkan berlepas pada jam 07:55 dan 10:50.

Penerbangan FY6085 dari Kota Bharu ke Johor Bahru pula dijadualkan berlepas pada jam 06:10 dan dijadualkan tiba di Lapangan Terbang Antarabangsa Senai (SIA) pada jam 07:55, manakala penerbangan FY6086 dari Johor Bahru ke Kota Bharu dijadualkan berlepas pada jam 08:20 dan dijadualkan tiba di Lapangan Terbang Sultan Ismail Petra (LTSIP), Kota Bharu, Kelantan pada jam 10:00.

Tiket penerbangan tambahan ini boleh didapati di semua kaunter tiket Firefly, manakala untuk pembelian secara dalam talian, sila layari laman sesawang www.fireflyz.com.my.

Sumber: Kota Bharu Airport | www.kotabharuairport.blogspot.com

Monday, May 16, 2016

MAS appoints new as MASwings CEO

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia Airlines (MAS) has appointed Captain Izham Ismail as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of its sister airline, MASwings, effective July 1.

He takes over from the current CEO, Captain Ritzerwan Rashid, who will retire at end-August.

Izham will focus on developing a comprehensive and sustainable plan to improve MASwings' operations, financial performance and customer service experience," Malaysia Airlines' CEO, Christoph Mueller said in a statement today.

Izham has close to 36 years of experience in the aviation industry and thus, combines a valuable breadth of understanding in airline operations and business management.

"I am proud that he is our own internal home grown talent and confident that he will be able to lead MASwings to new levels of excellence," Mueller said.

Izham is currently Head of the Operations Programme Management Office overseeing more than 100 projects, key to the turnaround of Malaysia Airlines.

He is also a Board of Director for various companies such as MASkargo and began his career with Malaysia Airlines as a trained pilot from the Philippines Airline Aviation School.

As a pilot he achieved world aviation records when he flew Malaysia Airlines' first B777-200 eastward from Seattle to Kuala Lumpur and back, setting a new world longest flight and speed record for the fastest round-the-world flight by a commercial airliner with total flight time of 41 hours 59 minutes over a distance of 23, 310 miles.

Mueller also thanked Ritzerwan for his contributions to MASwings as well as Malaysia Airlines.

Under his tenure, the airline significantly expanded to become a recognised and designated "The East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA) airline".

Source: Bernama | 16 May 2016

Brighter days ahead for Senai Airport


There is plan to upgrade the Senai Airport in anticipation of higher traffic volume.
JOHOR BAHRU: Things are looking up for Senai Airport. Passenger growth, both domestic and international, is on the increase and an expansion plan for the airport is in place.

It may not be the country’s busiest nor the largest, but Senai Airport is fast catching up. What was once described as a sleepy little airport is now awakening to the fact that it has a major role in civil aviation.

On May 29, an inaugural flight to the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou will take off, making it the first time Senai Airport will host a direct flight to China. The Philippines is on the horizon and Shanghai and Beijing could be next. Hat Yai and Bangkok are already on the list.

Ho Chih Minh, Vietnam’s bustling southern city, has a passenger load which would keep airlines smiling and we can also expect to see a steady stream of passengers from the Indonesian cities of Bandung, Surabaya and Jogjakarta.

The domestic routes include Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Ipoh, Kota Bharu, Kuching, Kota Kinabalu and other East Malaysian towns.

Senai Airport served 2.58 million domestic and international passengers last year. This figure represents a 100 per cent increase from the total volume five years ago, making it the sixth busiest airport in the country behind Kuala Lumpur International Airport (almost 49 million passengers), Kota Kinabalu (6.5 million), Penang International Airport (6.2 million), Kuching (4.7 million) and Subang Airport (3 million).

Passenger growth at the airport has been steady over the past 10 years and the authorities are in talks with more airlines to make Senai their hub.

They include MojoAir, a privately-funded airline with the Malaysian government as the major partner. Malindo Air will also start flying to Sepang from Senai beginning Monday. Talks are also ongoing to lure a China-based airline.

“The aim is to bring more international flights to Senai Airport and at the same time to serve the country’s main domestic routes,” said the aiport’s chief executive officer Md Derick Basir.

To ensure Senai Aiport stays on track with its projection to surpass the three million passenger mark by the end of the year, expansion and upgrading works will start soon.

Seven more check-in counters will be added to the existing 16. Sixteen more retail and food and beverage outlets will be created. The duty free outlets, which Md Derick described, as the “soul of an airport” will also be expanded.

“We have room to expand and live up to the expectations and demands of an international airport. We have to think long term. Retail and F&B outlets and duty free shopping are avenues for us to explore,” said Md Derick.

It’s obvious he has the Chinese passengers in mind. They are known for their shopping, with liquor, watches and branded handbags as their choice items.

“With no direct flights from the Chinese cities currently, they tend to come to Johor Bahru via KL International Airport or Changi Airport in Singapore. AirAsia’s JB-Guangzhou flight at the end of the month will change things. With the Chinese now ready to invest in the Iskandar Region, the market for more direct flights from major cities will increase” he added.

Attracting Singaporeans to use the Senai Airport as their gateway to popular holiday destinations in Malaysia and other Southeast Asian countries is also on the cards. The cheaper ringgit vis-a-vis the Singapore dollar is a factor.

An estimated 50,000 Singaporeans came through Senai Airport last year to make their way to other destinations in the country or Thailand.

The strength of their dollar is an obvious reason and the notorious traffic situation at the Causeway especially during weekends does not deter them.

I believe Singaporeans will still go to where they will find value for money. People will argue that we lose out in terms of connectivity and frequency of flight to Changi Airport. But that’s obvious. It is the world’s No 1 airport.

“But Senai can capitalise on its proximity to Singapore and the much cheaper cost to lure Singaporeans here,” said Md Derick.

Senai saw 300,745 passengers on its international route last year and 2.28 million on its domestic route. Kuala Lumpur remains the No 1 domestic destination, with almost a million passengers flying out to KLIA and Subang Airport.

Senai Airport, as my travel agent friend once told me, will always have to live in the shadow of Changi Airport.

“But that’s inevitable, given the reputation they have built over the years and the investment the Singapore government has poured in. But as long as Senai can serve a niche market, like serving shorter flights to Southeast Asian cities, it can survive. Once the railway link between Johor Baru and Singapore’s Mass Rapid Transport (MRT) system happens, Singaporeans might come to Senai in droves to fly to their preferred destinations.

“Malaysians also dread crossing over to Singapore to catch a flight, especially during peak hours. But because of the connectivity and the variety of flights available from Changi, what choice have we got,” said a travel agent.

Senai Airport has great potential. Let’s hope those in authority are given the mandate to take it to greater heights.

Source: Malay Mail | 14 May 2016

Sunday, May 15, 2016

AirAsia X to fly direct to Tehran from KL and Bangkok

KUALA LUMPUR: AirAsia X Bhd and Thai AirAsia X on Saturday announced Tehran as their latest destination in the group's route network, connecting both Kuala Lumpur and Bangkok directly to the Iranian capital.

Direct flights to Tehran from Kuala Lumpur (KLIA 2) and Bangkok (Don Mueang International Airport) will be operated three times weekly, with the commencement date set for June 21, 2016 and June 22, 2016 respectively.

Chief Executive Officer of AirAsia X, Benyamin Ismail, said Iran is a large and growing economy and Tehran is a brilliant business city, with the recent lifting of sanctions opening up exciting new prospects for Iran as a tourist destination.

"We believe that the revival of direct flights to Tehran from Kuala Lumpur is timely and we foresee that our direct flights from both ASEAN cities of Kuala Lumpur and Bangkok can improve bilateral relations while encouraging trade and tourism activities between the cities," he said in a statement.

To commemorate the launch of this brand-new route, AirAsia X is offering promotional all-in-fares from as low as RM299 one-way on economy seats and from as low as RM999 one-way on the award-winning Premium Flatbeds departing from Kuala Lumpur.

These promotional fares are available for booking online at airasia.com from now until May 29, 2016 for the travel period from June 21, 2016 departing from Kuala Lumpur.

Source: Bernama | Business | 14 May 2016

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Wings of change

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia Airlines Bhd (MAS) seems to be refreshing itself just as it announced a modest profit of RM14mil for the first quarter of 2016 after a slew of internal restructuring initiatives that have streamlined the airline.

Next on its plate is the need to refresh its uniforms that stewardesses wear, which is part of the plan to improve customer service, fine-tune its processes and improve productivity.

But there is an uproar among people who disagree with the uniform change move, as for them removing the iconic kebaya will hurt the airline’s legacy and identity.

However, MAS’ outgoing chief executive officer Christoph Mueller, in a phone interview with StarBizWeek, says the signature kebaya of the airline will stay.

One thing the uniform change will not see is the kebaya, which is our signature uniform element.’’

He says the idea of the uniform change came from within the employees who want a new look and feel to be in sync with the other changes at the airline. As it is, MAS has too many uniform combinations that not just confuse the customer, but it is no longer cost effective to maintain so many designs. Streamlining the design will help in passenger orientation.

Constant changes to offer the best-in-class is what global airlines are doing to lure customers to fly with them and MAS want to emulate that, so that it can regain its share of the market. But this will cost money. MAS product offerings have for years been said to be stale and a fresher and breezier look is preferred.

But the question is of timing, as many feel it is not right to spend money on uniforms when there are so many other things that need to be taken stock of at the airline, says an airline industry executive.

“Do they really need to spend so much money? Why don’t they use that money to reward their employees who could do with that motivation,’’ the executive adds.

MAS’ iconic kebaya is said to be designed by ITM students but the design of the new uniform will be done by fashion designer Farah Khan.

Meuller declined to say how much it would cost the airline to change the uniforms. All the changes MAS have embarked on are part and parcel of the airline trying to re-brand itself and bring it back to profitability.

There are over 220 initiatives in place to turn the once ailing airline around, and they are at various stages of implementation. The progress may be there but the job is far from over and MAS will not be able to report profit for full year even though it had a modest profit for its first quarter this year.

This is also despite the fact that passenger loads are improving and forward bookings from July onwards to the end of the year are looking positive.

“We will not make a profit for full year 2016, that will be two years ahead of our projections. It was a good first quarter, but we do expect a weak second quarter, though the third and fourth quarters might be a bit stronger. Fortunately the loss for full year might be slightly lower than what we had budgeted,’’ Mueller said, but declined to elaborate.

MAS reported a RM450mil loss in January to March last year. It also slashed 6,000 jobs to bring its workforce to 14,000 people and renegotiated most of its contracts with over 20,000 vendors to bring down the cost of procurement.

“On the cost side, I believe the painful things are already behind us,’’ Mueller says. Cost is down by 32% and MAS’ payroll, often said to be inflated in the past, is lower, but Mueller does not want to share details.

“We made real good inroads in payroll cost and were lucky on the fuel cost as it has been very low in the first quarter. But the most pressing issue on the cost side is really our vendor cost.

“We have not been smart buyers in the past and I have identified many goods and services that we purchased was 20% to 25% above market rates and that is basically where our attention should be, to bring down all this cost,’’ he adds.

Apart from bringing cost down, he wants “every stone unturned and every touch point reviewed” to improve customer services so that MAS is able to regain its glory of the past. He also expects fares to drop further but it will be based on sectors, seasons, demand and competition.

Asked who will be the best candidate to take over from him since he is leaving the airline in September, Mueller says “I am not involved in the discussions, it’s a matter for the board and shareholders to decide.’’

Names such as MAS executive director Peter Bellew and Datuk Seri Shahril Mokhtar, the CEO of Mass Rapid Transit Corp, have been bandied about as possible replacement. Asked if there was an internal candidate, Mueller said it would certainly be good for continuity of the turnaround plan.

Source: The Star Online | Business | 14 May 2016

Landasan LTSIP dipanjangkan 100 meter sahaja?

KUALA LUMPUR: Kerajaan Persekutuan menerusi Kementerian Pengangkutan Malaysia (MOT) diminta menimbangkan semula cadangan projek pemanjangan landasan Lapangan Terbang Sultan Ismail Petra (LTSIP), Kota Bharu, Kelantan yang hanya melibatkan pemanjangan 100 meter (m) sahaja daripada 2,400 m kepada 2,500 m. 

Menurut MOT, pemanjangan landasan kepada 2,500 m tersebut adalah untuk menampung semua jenis pesawat kod 4C tanpa sebarang had muatan. Antara jenis-jenis pesawat yang dikategorikan di bawah kod 4C ialah A320-200, B737-400, B737-800, dan yang terbesar sekali B737-900ER. 

Syarikat penerbangan AirAsia yang beroperasi di LTSIP menggunakan pesawat jenis A320-200 dengan 180 tempat duduk, manakala Malaysia Airlines (MAS) beroperasi dengan pesawat jenis B737-800 dengan 166 tempat duduk. Sementara itu, Malindo Air yang pernah beroperasi bagi laluan Kota Bharu - Kuala Lumpur menggunakan pesawat jenis B737-800 dan B737-900ER. 

Projek pembesaran dan naik taraf LTSIP di bawah Rancangan Malaysia Kesebelas (RMK11: 2016 - 2020) yang dijangka bermula pada separuh kedua tahun 2016 ini sepatutnya turut mengambil kira keperluan untuk mengendalikan pesawat berbadan lebar di bawah kod 4E seperti A330-300, B777-200ER, A350-900, dan B747-400 yang memerlukan landasan yang lebih panjang. 

Hal ini kerana terdapat keperluan untuk menerbangkan jemaah haji dari Kelantan terus ke Jeddah dan Madinah tanpa transit melalui Lapangan Terbang Antarabangsa Kuala Lumpur (KLIA) lebih-lebih lagi setiap tahun jemaah haji dari Kelantanlah yang paling ramai berbanding dua lagi negeri di Pantai Timur.

Usaha untuk mengadakan penerbangan haji terus dari LTSIP ke Jeddah dan Madinah perlu menjadi agenda Kerajaan Persekutuan dan juga Kerajaan Negeri Kelantan demi kepentingan umat Islam negeri ini. 

Dalam pada itu, pada musim-musim perayaan terutamanya Hari Raya Aidilfitri dan Hari Raya Aidiladha, MAS boleh menimbang untuk menggunakan pesawat berbadan lebar terutamanya A330-300 bagi laluan Kuala lumpur - Kota Bharu sebagai penerbangan tambahan.

Untuk tujuan tersebut, sebuah laman kempen sokongan telah dilancarkan untuk menggesa Kerajaan Persekutuan supaya dapat memanjangkan landasan LTSIP kepada 3,500 m melalui laman sesawang www.facebook.com/landasan3500m

Oleh itu, Kerajaan Persekutuan diharap dapat memanjangkan landasan LTSIP daripada 2,400 m kepada 3,500 m untuk membolehkan LTSIP mengendalikan pesawat berbadan lebar tanpa had muatan. 

Sumber: Kota Bharu Airport | www.kotabharuairport.blogspot.com

KLIA masih tawar penerbangan terus ke Eropah

Terminal KLIA 1, Lapangan terbang Antarabangsa Kuala Lumpur (KLIA). 
KUALA LUMPUR: Setelah Malaysia Airlines menggantung beberapa laluan ke Eropah, iaitu Frankfurt (sejak 1 Jul. 2015), Istanbul-Ataturk (26 Ogos 2015), Amsterdam (25 Jan. 2016), dan Paris-Charles-de-Gaulle (25 Jan. 2016), kini hanya terdapat tiga laluan penerbangan terus ke Eropah dari Lapangan Terbang Antarabangsa Kuala Lumpur (KLIA).

Tiga laluan tersebut ialah Kuala Lumpur - London-Heathrow (KUL-LHR), Kuala Lumpur - Amsterdam (KUL-AMS), dan Kuala Lumpur  - Istanbul-Ataturk (KUL-IST).

Sebelum itu, syarikat penerbangan Lufthansa dari Jerman telah menamatkan perkhidmatan bagi laluan Kuala Lumpur - Frankfurt berkuat kuasa 28 Februari 2016.

Malaysia Airlines (MAS) dan British Airways (BA) masing-masing menawarkan perkhidmatan penerbangan terus ke London dengan menggunakan pesawat jenis A380-800 dan B787, manakala KLM Royal Dutch Airlines dan Turkish Airlines masing-masing mengadakan penerbangan terus ke Amsterdam dan Istanbul. 

Dalam pada itu, menerusi kerjasama perkongsian kod di antara MAS dengan Emirates, penumpang dari Kuala Lumpur mempunyai akses ke destinasi lain di Eropah melalui Dubai, iaitu ke Frankfurt, Rome, Madrid, Barcelona, dan banyak lagi.

Setakat ini, hanya tinggal dua benua benua yang tidak ada penerbangan terus dari Kuala Lumpur, iaitu Amerika Utara dan Amerika Selatan (Amerika Latin). 

Sumber: Kota Bharu Airport | www.kotabharuairport.blogspot.com

Balik Kampung Bersama Enrich from only 4,500 Enrich miles

KUALA LUMPUR: For the first time, Enrich members can fly home this Ramadan from only 4,500 Enrich miles without the worry of traffic jams.

With Ramadan just around the corner, Enrich -- Malaysia Airlines' frequent flyer programme is promoting Balik Kampung campaign where members are able to enjoy a redemption offer of up to 30 per cent off for their flight tickets.

Members can start to redeem from May 14 - 20, 2016 whereas the travel period will start from June 6 - 29, 2016.

Malaysia Airlines' Enrich & Loyalty Head, Khairul Nisa Ismail said in conjunction with the celebration, Enrich's main priority is to reconnect its members with their loved ones and to cherish the spirit of togetherness.

"Now, members can redeem flights from as low as 4,500 Enrich Miles to get home faster.

"Don't worry if you are short on Enrich Miles because with Cash + Miles and with a minimum balance of 1,000 Enrich Miles, you can still redeem flights by topping up the difference with cash," said Khairul Nisa in a statement.

This redemption offer is valid for one-way and return flights on Malaysia Airlines only.

Redemption starts from only 4,500 Enrich Miles one-way and 9,000 Enrich Miles for return flights.

Source: Bernama | 13 May 2016