AirAsia X to boost core market services

6 Nov 2012

AirAsia X, the long-haul arm of Asia’s biggest low-cost carrier, is planning to increase frequencies on a number of routes in the Asia-Pacific region from July next year as part of its ongoing network realignment to focus on its core markets. 

The carrier’s services between Kuala Lumpur and the Australian cities of Melbourne and Sydney will both be increased from daily to 11 times weekly, as will its service to Seoul. Meanwhile, flights between Kuala Lumpur and Taipei will be increased from once to twice daily. This year the airline increased its frequency on this route to 11 weekly in the summer months.

A spokesperson for the airline said that the frequency increases were part of the ongoing adjustments to AirAsia X’s network. “There is always a huge demand for travel in Asia-Pacific, and with the recent re-alignment of its network earlier in the year, AirAsia X is concentrating its capacity in its core markets in Korea, Japan, Taiwan, Nepal, Australia and China,” they said. 

In January this year, the airline announced that it planned to re-align its network. This would involve cutting long-haul routes to Europe, which high fuel prices and emissions tariffs had made unprofitable, to focus instead on core markets in Asia-Pacific (see here). 

“Our vision is to further solidify our position as the global leader in low-cost, long-haul aviation and create the first global, multi-hub low-cost carrier network along with other carriers of the AirAsia Group,” the spokesperson said. 

They explained that the AirAsia group considered any destinations over four hours from Kuala Lumpur as long haul, and that these would be operated by AirAsia X using A330-300 aircraft with 377 seats, including some premium flat beds. Regional flights of under four hours, such as those to Asean countries, would be operated by Air Asia’s other affiliates, using smaller A320 aircraft with 180 seats. 

The spokesperson said that AirAsia X plans to further expand its services to core markets in the future. “AirAsia X will be opening new routes across our core markets,” they said. “We will see an addition of 24 A330-300 aircraft between 2013 and 2017 where we will increase frequencies in existing markets and deploy aircrafts by opening up new routes within these markets including Asia Pacific.”

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Nicholas Olczak

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