Malaysia Airlines has launched direct flights from Kota Kinabalu to Singapore.

The three-times-weekly service takes place on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays, operated by B737-800 aircraft with 160 seats (16 in business and 144 in economy). Flight times are as follows:

MH647 departs Kota Kinabalu International airport (BKI) at 0700, lands at Changi International airport (SIN) at 0915.

MH658 departs SIN at 1000, lands at BKI at 1225.

The inaugural flight took place on August 27, with passengers welcomed at Kota Kinabalu with a water cannon salute and a bag of souvenirs.

Group CEO of Malaysia Aviation Group, Captain Izham Ismail said:

“We are delighted to expand our connectivity to Singapore as many of our passengers opt for this route for business and leisure travel. This will further boost connectivity and flexibility for passengers bound to Singapore, as the airline also offers direct flights to the country via our main hub of Kuala Lumpur, Penang, and Kuching.

“With this new service, passengers from Singapore can seamlessly connect to the Land Below the Wind to discover the scenic attractions of Sabah and even Fly Malaysia to surrounding states from BKI via sister airlines Firefly and MASwings.”

The airline added that it aims to achieve more than 70 per cent of its pre-Covid-19 capacity by the end of the year.

Puan Noredah Othman, CEO of Sabah Tourism Board, said:

“Sabah Tourism Board will continue to promote Sabah as a preferred holiday destination to Singaporeans and also to use the popular Singapore hub as a transit point for long haul market travellers to reach Sabah. Since the reopening of the SIN-BKI route in April, we have recorded an upward trend with 1,248 arrivals in May and 3,051 arrivals in June. With the inclusion of Malaysia Airlines, we are confident that this trend will continue.”