Malaysia Airlines considers flexible product offering

9 Jun 2015 by Clement Huang

Following the news that Malaysia Airlines (MAS) is set to undergo some major changes (see here), it was revealed that the airline is considering implementing a "modular product model" to offer better value to its customers and ultimately drive up sales.

Speaking to Aviation Weekly at the IATA AGM in Miami, the airline’s chief executive-designate Christoph Mueller said he foresees MAS becoming a “value” airline offering basic products with optional premium perks for those willing to fork out the extra cash.

“Customers might book a business-class seat, but opt out of the miles or lounge access. Or they could take a day flight in economy to Australia and return in business overnight,” said Mueller.

MAS does not have a premium economy product, which means that there is currently a big cost difference between its lowest travel class and its premium offering. 

By offering customers the option of flying on business class without the added “frills” such as extra checked baggage, lounge access or mileage accrual, it would allow the carrier to reduce the cost of business class, while simultaneously opening up the premium cabin to those that were previously priced out of it.

The model bares similarities to that used by low-cost carriers offering premium products, such as Air Asia X and Scoot. 

The first step, according to Mueller would be to introduce a brand new IT infrastructure that brings with it an improved booking engine. The improved platform would enable “people [to] build their own product – [something] our current systems cannot deliver.”

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Clement Huang

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