Malaysia Airlines eyes flexible product

9 Jun 2015 by GrahamSmith

Malaysia Airlines is considering a "modular product model" to offer better value to passengers and drive up sales, the carrier's new CEO has said.

Christoph Mueller told Aviation Week that he foresees MAS becoming a "value" airline offering basic products with optional premium perks for those willing to fork out the extra cash.

The airline does not have a premium economy product, which means there is a large price difference between its lowest travel class and its premium offering.

Mueller said: "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."

By offering customers the option of flying in business without added "frills" such as extra checked baggage, lounge access or mileage accrual, it would allow MAS 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 bears 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 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".

Last week, it was announced that MAS has been placed in administration and will emerge in September as Malaysia Airlines Berhad (see news, June 1). It will continue to operate a double-daily A380 service on its London Heathrow to Kuala Lumpur route.

Clement Huang

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